Flanders is the perfect tour for an antique dealer seeking to stock his store. Flanders offers many off the beaten path sources for antique shopping and a slew of trade-only warehouses and private sellers. Our local expert Antiques Diva Guide picks you up at your hotel and takes you antiquing in Flanders to our favorite vendors, exposing you to bargains on Napoleon III pieces as well as special finds from the 18th to 20th centuries. Flanders is one of our go-to destinations for antique dealers on the antiques trail. Booked in conjunction with several days on a South of France or England, this tour is ideal for antique dealers. One of my personal favorite antiquing destinations, Antiques Diva Flanders antique buying tours are sure to please!
Antiquing in Flanders
Flanders s the Dutch-speaking, northern portion of Belgium – where the local language is called Flemish. (The French-speaking part of Belgium is called Wallonia.) Antwerp, Bruges, Ghent and Tongeren are some of the best-known cities in Flanders. Today’s Flanders has been a part of Spain, France, Holland and Austria, and with its varied past was influenced by the whole of Europe in its furniture design. The region had a reputation for tolerance so refugees fleeing religious persecution settled here, bringing with them their own crafts and customs. For example, 17th C Flemish antiques have a Spanish influence as many of the craftsmen making furniture in Belgium at that time were Spanish refugees.
Flemish furniture was popular in and exported to England, where you still see it in many country homes – oak, heavy and with elaborate carving and the distinctive Flemish S scrolling. Over the centuries so many different people found refuge in Flanders, and today you can find many different styles including Louis XV, Louis XVI, Empire, Napoleon III, Spanish Colonial, Henri II, Willem III, Gustavian, Louis Philippe, Chippendale, Rustique, Baroque, Neo-Baroque, Lodewijk, Queen Anne, Bretonne… and more!
In Flanders you will find pieces from many periods and designs to meet any need – and our Diva Guides will who the best dealers, wholesalers and private sellers are:
- architectural salvage
- garden pieces and statuary
- art and objets d’art
- religious artifacts
- art deco
If you need to shop for antiques but don’t have time to travel to Europe, Antiques Diva Buying Services will work with you to source, purchase and ship pieces that meet your exact requirements.
Bruges Zandfeesten is one of the largest flea markets in Belgium, held three times per year: the 1st Sunday in July and August and the last Sunday in September – and its crowded with locals and tourists. Tongeren’s Sunday morning flea market has been booming for over 30 years, with bric-a-brac and curiosities as well as serious antiques. Many antique lovers are familiar with Brussel’s Sablon district with its amazing antique shops and galleries, but there is also a Brussel’s weekend antique market and a daily flea market on the Place de Jeu de Balle in the Marolles district. Your Antiques Diva Guide will create a custom itinerary based on your antique shopping requirements, budget and schedule that takes you to flea markets, small shops and dealers, antiques warehouses and private homes where the owner’s collection are available for sale.
Our Antiques Diva Guides are local experts – they know the dealers personally, have long-standing relationships with them and have sourced antiques at their shops for many years. Shopping with The Antiques Diva gives you insider access to the best antiques at the best prices. You have the shopping power of all our clients behind you – when antiques dealers see The Antiques Diva, they know we mean business! Our guides will translate, negotiate and help you find exactly what you are looking for, at a price you can afford. Then, we will help you ship it home either through our Antiques Diva shipping services partner or with your preferred shipper.
We’d love to see you in Flanders, where we’ll open our little black book full of restaurants, hotels, fashion, home decor and bien sur, antiques!
Flanders is a full day antiques tour and is available Tuesday – Sunday – and schedules perfectly with a France or Sweden tour!
Toma – The Antiques Diva
BELGIUM ANTIQUES and FLEA MARKET TOURS
It’s no secret that when I’m not at home in Berlin or traveling on Diva business, I can frequently be found in Belgium. Serious shoppers in-the-know go to Belgium to buy antiques, vintage and decorator pieces at positively brilliant prices. On a Diva Buying Tour, our local Belgium Antiques Tours Guides take you to our favorite sources including European antique warehouses and by-appointment-only secret antique shops off the beaten path, all the while translating and negotiating on your behalf. From classic French furniture to tabletop items and smalls, Belgium offers a variety of French flea market pieces for the antiques lover.
Antwerp and the surrounding area is one of the best areas for sourcing antiques. On our Antwerp tour, our Guide picks you up at your hotel and takes you to a plethora of antiques, vintage and home décor stores both in town and the surrounding countryside. Here you’ll find that classic Belgian style of bleached oak furniture and painted pieces as well as gorgeous linens, crystal, paintings and decorative pieces. Plus Mid-Century Modern and fabulous Retro pieces are incredibly hot in Belgium at the moment and the vintage art scene is definitely cool. Belgium sets the trends for design so be prepared to find pieces that may grace the cover of next season’s shelter magazines. On tour our Guide translates and negotiates on your behalf and we also liaise you with a shipper to get your purchases home.
Antwerp may be Europe’s best-kept secret when it comes to antique sourcing. On our Antwerp tour our Guide picks you up at your hotel and takes you to a plethora of antiques, vintage and home décor stores both in town and the surrounding countryside. Here you’ll find that classic Belgian style of bleached oak furniture and painted pieces as well as gorgeous linens, crystal, paintings and decorative pieces. Belgium sets the trends for design so be prepared to find pieces that may grace the cover of next season’s shelter magazines. On tour, our Guide translates and negotiates on your behalf and we also liaise you with a shipper to get your purchases home.
Antique Warehouses, By-Appointment-Only Antique Stores, Private Residences
Our Guide picks you up at your hotel and takes you to our secret sources including European antique warehouses, by-appointment-only antique stores – including private residences where virtually everything in the vendors home is for sale. Everything from decorative antique accessories to fine French or country furniture can be found on this tour. Tell us what you’re looking for and we custom plan a route to take you to the perfect places to find what you want. As always, our Antiques Guide translates and negotiates on your behalf, bringing the buying power of all our clients to the table when we walk in the door.
Use our AD&CO LOGISTICS antique storing and shipping service to get your treasures home, or we will also liaise you with your preferred shipper.
Meet Our Antwerp Antiques Guides
Antiques Diva Guide Philip Ver Hoeye
Philip Ver Hoeye is a native Belgian and is our Divo Guide in Belgium and the north of France. Born in Antwerp, his interest in antiques began in his teenage years when he started collecting small antique objects and furniture. His lifelong passion for antiques and fine living has culminated in opening a boutique hotel called JVR 108 in Antwerp. His favorite part of being an Antiques Diva Guide is taking clients to hidden secret sources and helping them choose antiques whether they are looking for fine 17th century pieces or mid-century modern. Aside from collecting antiques, Philip also enjoys cars, particularly British ones and interior decoration which is evident in his perfectly appointed guesthouse in Antwerp!
Antiques Diva Guide Frederik Aers
Frederik Aers is a native Belgian hailing from Brussels. He’s also lived in the Flemish part of Brabant and now resides in Antwerp. He is one of our Divo Guides in Belgium, North of France, and The Netherlands. He’s always had a passion for antiques and design. In fact, when he was just a small boy he would constantly be drawing houses, building villas with blocks and collecting articles on interior design, antiques, and gardens. Today, along with our other Divo Guide Phillip, he operates a boutique hotel in Antwerp called JVR108. Frederik enjoys taking clients to see beautiful places where they can find special antiques and objects d’art. When not on tour with The Antiques Diva & Co, he loves to travel and experience different cultures which gives him inspiration. Touring interiors which reflect the personality and tell the story of the people who inhabit them is a favorite activity for him. Frederik believes that a well-combined collection of objects and furniture tells a story and this is part of why he loves taking people on Antiques Buying Tours!
Philip and Frederik are also the AD&CO international shipping and storage concierges, and are experts in exporting antiques to other countries.
When I visit Antwerp, I stay at Philip and Frederik’s luxury guest house, JVR108: The hotel is actually a historic mansion that happens to be right near the heart of Antwerp. The location is convenient to the historic city center where you can find shops, restaurants and museums, not to mention the city’s famed cathedral. Public transportation is close by and there are also bicycles available to guests free of charge. Learn more about JVR108 here.
We’d love to see you in Antwerp, where we’ll open our little black book full of restaurants, hotels, fashion, home decor and bien sur, antiques!
Until next time,
Toma Clark Haines, The Antiques Diva
Dear Diva Readers,
JVR108, contacted me and told me they were opening an antiques showroom adjacent to their boutique hotel in Antwerp, and that the inaugural inventory includes the very console table which graces the front cover of “Houses of Veranda!” I felt like I had died and gone to… Diva Heaven!t my home in Berlin, I have a stack of coffee table books in my living room which I love to peruse when I have down time. At the top of the stack is a favorite, “Houses of Veranda”, which always gives me drool-worthy inspiration. Imagine my excitement when one of our Antiques Diva sources, owners of
Philip and Frederick have purchased several pieces from the renowned Chateau Rozenhout which was decorated by Axel Vervoordt and Brigitte Garner. The inventory is so top secret that it hasn’t even been announced yet! In fact, the guys are in the process of designing their showroom so the furniture is in a storage unit at the moment. But that doesn’t stop The Antiques Diva! While recently touring with trade clients, we had the opportunity to shop the storage unit, filled with exquisite pieces in this private warehouse. It’s so thrilling when we’re able to find pieces with perfect pedigree like this and make them accessible at amazing trade prices to our clients.
Of course, after shopping the storage unit, we went back to the hotel and the boys of JVR108 had a private chef prepare a 5 course dinner for us—A Diva’s work is never done! If you’d like information on these pieces, contact us at email@example.com. And don’t forget, when you’re in the Antwerp area, stay at JVR108 for an top-notch experience. And tell them The Antiques Diva sent you to make sure you get SPECIAL BEHIND THE SCENES ACCESS not available otherwise!!
The Antiques Diva®
House Beautiful July/August 2010
Photograph by Roger Davies
Dear Diva Readers,
In the July/August 2010 House Beautiful I was absolutely smitten with the Baroque Cartouche Repurposed Head Board used by interior designers Marshall Watson & Jeffrey Kilmer in their client’s Salt Lake City guest house. Smitten with the idea of repurposing items for headboards, I had two items found recently on Antiques Diva Tours in Amsterdam and Antwerp spring to mind.
In Amsterdam’s Spiegelkwartier, this wooden embellishment from a ship in Holland would be positively dreamy. My husband and I have this metaphor for our marriage saying he is the captain of our ship – getting us where we want to go – but I’m the cruise director – ensuring that we stop and take plenty of excursions so it seems the ideal headboard for our master bedroom! When I first saw this piece I thought it was the back of a carriage like the piece we found in Antwerp on a Diva Tour.
I’ve had my eye on this piece in the International Antiques Centre in Antwerp for months… This shop ran by an American living abroad is positively palatial, containing over 4000 square feet of international antiques in a 16th C converted warehouse.
For years I’ve been smitten by the idea of repurposing headboards, and have often thought a garden gate would be ideal. In this Chicago Home and Garden magazines spread, the interior designer Kramer Design used a 75 year old balcony railing to accomplish the desired mood.
In my own bedroom, I’ve recovered a folding screen and antiqued the paper using a paint-technique and use it as my make-shift headboard. With all this bedroom talk, I’m feeling a little sleepy. So for now, it’s off to bed!
hat do Paris, Provence, London, Bath and The Cotswold’s have in common with Amsterdam, Brussels, Antwerp, Tongeren and Ghent?
They are all featured as having fabulous antique shopping in the new series The Antiques Diva™ is writing for EscapeArtist.com.
In case you’re not yet readers of this online magazine, click here to join me as I take you on a whirlwind antique shopping tour of Europe! But I warn you, you’d best bookmark this article as you won’t want to take a trip without consulting this series before hand!
Happy Reading and, as always, Happy Travels,
The Antiques Diva ™