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Why Now is the Best Time to Buy Antiques in England - Bath Decorative Antiques Fair | Tom Clark Haines | The Antiques Diva

Why Now is the Best Time to Buy Antiques in England: Bath Decorative Antiques Fair

Early in February, I spoke at New York City’s D&D Building and I was asked by a room full of interior design professionals, “Where is the trend heading for European now?” My response: If you’re only going to shop one place, for one-stop shopping the best place to buy antiques is England! In January I was in London twice – first for the London Art, Antiques and Interiors Fair, and then again later in the month for meetings to plan upcoming special events. 

England has become a far more affordable travel destination for Americans in recent years due to some negative news: Brexit led to an economic downturn. Here’s another tip: According to USAToday, ‘Airbnb is thriving in London with an average rental rate of $115 per night, and sister-site TripAdvisor Vacation Rentals are in no short supply.’ 

One of the best examples of “one-stop shopping in England” is the 29th Bath Decorative Antiques Fair in March. 

Today is the Best Time to Buy Antiques in the UK

I was on a panel with interior designers Robert Passal and Garrow Kedigian on How to Source Antiques like the Pros at the D&D Building and hosted by Duralee: the event was streamed on Facebook LIVE by Aspire magazine, watch here

WATCH: Toma Clark Haines: How to Source Antiques Like the Pros 

Brexit has had an impact on buying antiques in the UK. In short, England has gone on sale for American buyers! Now is the best time to buy antiques in England.

If you’re only going to shop one place, I would say shop in England. England is one-stop shopping. The best of France is already there. For hundreds of years, the Brits have been scouring the world collecting antiques

Antiques Diva buying agent Gail McLeodGail McLeod is our English Antiques Diva Buying Agent and she might just be the most connected woman in the world of antiques. She also is owner of Google’s top-ranked antiques fair website Antiques News & Fairs and is Editor in Chief of the Antiques are Green website and vice chair of the new Antiques are Green Trade Association. She is co-founder of Antiques Young Guns. Her career in the antiques trade began as manager of Pennard House Antiques in Bath – the UK’s largest export trade collective for decorative antiques in the fabled days of frantic business.

Here in England we are blessed with a complete melting pot of inventory which has arrived on our shores from the Colonies and there has never been an occasion when I have been stumped by a request from a Diva client! Spanish Colonial period pieces for a Hollywood mansion? Step this way! A collection of gravestones and a church spire for a luxury theme park? No problem! 

The Bath Decorative Antiques Fair is still the leading regional event to beat, where rustic to refined ultra-relevant stylish English Country House style, Mid Century design, industrial chic, Swedish period painted furniture, period portraits and perennially fashionable crusty iron garden furniture will rub shoulders with decorative staples of the 80s and 90s. 

Now is the Best Time to Buy Antiques in England | Not Wanted on Voyage - quartet of industrial lanterns

Not Wanted on Voyage – quartet of industrial lanterns 

Now back in demand by a new and younger audience – French marble top chocolatiers’ tables, elaborate brass and steel bakers’ racks, buffets and armoires in fruitwood, huge pine refectory tables and Windsor chairs, rows of yellow confit pots, pub signs, marine and advertising ephemera, homely Staffordshire dogs, samplers and quilts and yes, large-scale oak, mahogany and walnut brown furniture re-imagined by a new generation of decorators and collectors.

Now is the Best Time to Buy Antiques in England | Vagabond Antiques – a Parliament of stone owls

Vagabond Antiques – a Parliament of stone owls 

The event has remained at the same wonky Bath Pavilion since the launch back in 1989 and quickly fills up with eager exhibitors each year, keen to secure a place at what is reliably expected to be a busy event teeming with buyers from the UK, EU and USA happy to queue up for hours in all weathers before the doors open at 12 midday.

Now is the Best Time to Buy Antiques in England | Country Oak Furniture – group of primitive chairs

Country Oak Furniture – group of primitive chairs

The 29th Bath Decorative Antiques Fair 

  • www.bathdecorativeantiquesfair.co.uk
  • Date:
    9-11 March 2018
    TRADE ONLY 8 March
  • Venue:
    The Pavilion, North Parade Road, Bath, BA2 4EU
  • Opening Times:
    TRADE PREVIEW Thursday 8 March: 12noon – 5pm
    Admission with Trade Invite or Trade Business Card. Otherwise £10.00.
    PUBLIC: Friday 9 March 10am – 5pm
    Saturday 10 March 10am – 5pm
    Sunday 11 March 10am – 4pm
  • Admission:
    £5.00
    Free Tickets

Cheers! 

Toma, The Antiques Diva 

 

Christmas Gift Guide

All I want for Christmas …. Alfies and Grays

Alfies London Christmas Shopping PartyJingle Bells, Jingle Bells! Santa’s on his way!! He’s making a list of those who have been naughty and nice… and I’ve got to tell you… I have been very very good this year. And thus… my wish list is super long! With a world of antiques available at my every whim… where do I go to shop for antiques? London of course! Two of my favorite antiquing sources for the holidays – or any time of year – are Alfies and Grays Antiques. You’re invited to shop with them too at their special after-hours Christmas Shopping Party at Alfies Antique Market on Thursday, December 1 from 5pm-9pm.

But don’t worry if you’re not in London this holiday… their gift guides are jammed packed with presents fit for a diva. Uhm… I’m just saying… Here’s my Wish List in case anyone of you wants to start their Christmas shopping with me in mind (wink, wink)!

From Alfies

Louis Vuitton Trunks

Louis Vuitton trunks at Tin Tin Collectables Alfies London

Louis Vuitton is timeless chic when it comes to fashion and handbags… but with travel accessories!? Get out of here. I’m ready to hop a steamer for my next holiday. Who wouldn’t love these fabulous vintage Louis Vuitton Trunks? And if you’re not planning un grand voyage they can be used for stylish storage or simply as a decorative accessory in your home

Haori Kimono C 1920s

Haori Kimono-c1920s-240 at Alfies London

I’ve got “Asia on the mind” with the launch of our new Asia Antique Tours in Thailand, Laos, Myanmar, Cambodia, Vietnam and Indonesia so this kimono had to be on my list!

1920’s Diamond and Ruby Ring

1920’s diamond and ruby ring from Gareth Brooks at Alfies London

Everyone who knows me knows that I’m a jewelry fanatic. This ring is just glamorous and stylish all at once! A bit over the top? Yes. But who said that was a bad thing?

From Grays

Gold Tone Snake Necklace

Gillian Horsup snake necklace Grays London

I’m in love with this exotic snake necklace. Paired with a simple dress, this baby has chic written all over it!

Red Chanel Bag circa 1980s

Linda Bee Red Chanel Bag Vintage 1980s Grays London

Vintage Chanel. Need I say any more?

Tiffany & Co 18 C Gold Earrings

Horton London a pair of Tiffany Co 18ct gold earclips set with carved black onyx designed by Angela Cummings c1975 3500 at Grays London

Classic, timeless, chic. These earrings would go with just about anything or for that matter… nothing at all!

Happy Holidays,

Toma Clark Haines, The Antiques Diva®

Antique Young Guns in Love

Dear Diva Readers,

Love is in the air in Britain… just in time for Valentines!  My favorite group of young antique dealers are setting shopper’s hearts atwitter with their #AYGINLOVEPOP UP SHOP in LILLIE ROAD, LONDON 11-14 FEBRUARY 2015 to celebrate Valentine’s Day weekend.

AYGINLOVE, Antiques Young Guns, Pop Up Stores, London Antiques, Lillie Road, George Johnson

Curated by AYG co-founder George Johnson and AYG of the Year finalist Lily Trunfull, these darlings will present a gorgeously choreographed collection of seriously sexy stock in which to fall in love!  Find a rare c1865 bentwood Thonet rocking chair or an early C19th Scandinavian settee, a vintage lead cherub sculpture for the garden or a late Victorian burr walnut boxed decanter set for the dining room.  And have no fear… should LONDON not be on your travel list this Valentines….  The Antique Young Guns website will also run a virtual Pop Up #AYGINLOVE gallery for one month from 11 February 2015.

AYGINLOVE, Antiques Young Guns, Pop Up Stores, London Antiques, Lillie Road, George Johnson

Lillie Road #AYGINLOVE POP UP SHOP
315 Lillie Road, London, SW6 7LL
11-14 February 2015

The shop will be open:
Wednesday 11 February – 12pm – 6pm
Thursday 12 February – 10am – 6pm
Friday 13 February – 10 am – 6 pm
Saturday 14 February -10am – 7.30 pm

Late night opening and drinks party:
Friday 13 February from 7pm till late

Happy Valentines!
The Antiques Diva®

Colefax & Fowler

Dear Diva Readers,

While in London on an Antiques Diva & Co tour with a journalist recently, we stopped into Colefax & Fowler for a private tour of the showroom and a look at some of the archives from this prestigious decorating firm. While it was a treat to see some of the original design boards used by the firm for high-end international clients, it was also interesting to meander through the rooms of the shop, which once had a life as a town house.

Colefax & Fowler, London Antiques, Nancy Lancaster, Using Antiques in Modern Ways, Antiques Diva, English Designers,

Colefax & Fowler, London Antiques, Nancy Lancaster, Using Antiques in Modern Ways, Antiques Diva, English Designers,

Colefax & Fowler, London Antiques, Nancy Lancaster, Using Antiques in Modern Ways, Antiques Diva, English Designers,

Each room of the rambling building is decorated with the company’s highly sought after wallpapers. But a pleasant surprise is that the rooms are also sprinkled with some of the firm’s bespoke pieces and antiques they offer for sale. From antique chest of drawers and sofas to mirrors and engravings, the hand-selected pieces are displayed in thoughtful groupings as if Sibyl Colefax or John Fowler had arranged them.

Colefax & Fowler, London Antiques, Nancy Lancaster, Using Antiques in Modern Ways, Antiques Diva, English Designers,

Colefax & Fowler, London Antiques, Nancy Lancaster, Using Antiques in Modern Ways, Antiques Diva, English Designers,

Colefax & Fowler, London Antiques, Nancy Lancaster, Using Antiques in Modern Ways, Antiques Diva, English Designers,

Yet the rooms are not exactly 1940’s English Country style— as one thinks of Nancy Lancaster’s interiors. Instead they are decorated in what you might call “updated traditional”, with perhaps a bit less decorative items. In other words, every surface on every table isn’t filled with objects! Nevertheless, these rooms exude comfortable, relaxed elegance just as they once did when John and Nancy worked in them.

Colefax & Fowler, London Antiques, Nancy Lancaster, Using Antiques in Modern Ways, Antiques Diva, English Designers,

Colefax & Fowler, London Antiques, Nancy Lancaster, Using Antiques in Modern Ways, Antiques Diva, English Designers,

Colefax & Fowler, London Antiques, Nancy Lancaster, Using Antiques in Modern Ways, Antiques Diva, English Designers,

Colefax & Fowler, London Antiques, Nancy Lancaster, Using Antiques in Modern Ways, Antiques Diva, English Designers,

What I love about the Colefax & Fowler showroom is that it proves that antiques CAN be used in a modern way. You don’t have to choose just one end of the spectrum—chintz and tchotchkes or sleek and minimal. You can decorate a space with traditional principles but in an updated fresh way, still using classic antiques of course! And for me, that’s the way of the future.

Toma Clark Haines, Colefax & Fowler, London Antiques, Nancy Lancaster, Using Antiques in Modern Ways, Antiques Diva, English Designers,

Happy decorating,

The Antiques Diva®

Battersea – Roderic Haugh

Dear Diva Readers,

A few days ago I mentioned that Becca Gauldie was going to be at the Decorative Antiques & Textile Fair in London’s Battersea Park and today I want to introduce you to another sensational dealer – Roderic Haugh who trades regularly at Core One Antiques. In addition to selling in this Fulham antiques collective, Roderic also takes clients by appointment in London or Norwich where he has his workshops. In addition to selling art and antiques, he offers a restoration service for all types of antique furniture.

Today I want to share with you a few fun finds on the Roderic Haugh Antiques website (his site is chocked full of interesting finds) to whet your appetite before you attend next week’s London Fair!  Get ready to shop til you drop because I promise you Battersea is going to be good this Fall!

September 27 – October 2nd – Decorative Antiques & Textile Fair – Battersea Park

This 1920’s Still Life is a Bargain at £590 – I’m utterly smitten by the colors and composition!

Anything Chinoserie is swoon-worthy in my mind and this George I Chinoserie Chest on a Stand for £3,600 is no exception.   Propping this in your living room says DIVA! 

This French Country Refectory Table (circa 1870) £2,600 is exceptionally wide and would make a great dining table for a casual country kitchen.  I’ve been looking for something similar for years… and the price on this one is just right.

Rats!  I was too slow in pulling my buying trigger – this Pair of Italian Giltwood Consol Tables is SOLD!  Tant pis pour moi!

What a gorgeous collection for great decorative appeal – 4 Bottles for £690

This collection of vintage Horticultural trays, priced each at £18, could be positively darling decorating a a sunroom or enclosed back porch

These are just a few of Roderic Haugh Antiques fun finds!   A decorative dealer since 1963 dealing in 18th, 19th and 20th Century furniture and objects with a difference, Roderic Haugh is one of the dazzling dealers at London’s famous Core One  (one of my favorite stops in London).  This antiques collective has 9 dealers, each with their own unique style, selling beautiful furniture and objects available to both private clients and trade!  This year at Battersea Core One Antiques will have a good showing of dealers exhibiting at Battersea! In addition to Roderic Haugh, you’ll find  Annabella Rothery and Christophe Edwards.

Don’t forget to visit Roderic Haugh at The Decorative Antiques & Textiles Fair, Battersea this September 27 to October 2, 2011.

Happy Shopping,
The Antiques Diva®

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