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The Time Is Now

Posted on April 8, 2011

Listen to certain commentators in the realm of antiques and sooner or later they will refer to 'brown' furniture. While crudely descriptive of some pieces it is an essentially unhelpful term, implying a degree of dull uniformity coupled with unfashionable impracticality. Nothing could be further from the truth. Explore the market for yourself and you will find a spectrum of shades from pale and understated limed oak to flaming auburn mahogany; from pine the colour of sun-dappled wheat to earthly elm.

Whatever hue you choose it is likely to embody an ageless design classic eminently suited to modern living. Take the smoker's bow or captain's chair. you don't need an addiction to nicotine or sea legs to appreciate it compact usefulness in a study or kitchen. Few chairs mould themselves so readily to those seated upon them, and the purity of their form chimes with both older and newer styles of decor. They serve well as singletons and look smart as matched sets arranged around a kitchen or dining table.

When it comes to maintaining domestic order the humble chest of drawers has yet to be bettered. A slender Wellington will outshine more utilitarian filing systems in a home office setting, and a traditional arrangement of short and long drawers in the bedroom represents your best choice of keeping socks paired-up in their appointed place. The multiplicity of sizes available means that many will slide-in as a made-to-measure fitted equivalent and by opting for solid, jointed antique timber it is possible to avoid those current construction techniques based upon stapled or badly screwed fibreboard.

Pick and choose, according to your own tastes, and you will find an almost endless diversity in antique furniture: plain or profusely decorated, imposing or bijou, clean and simple or flamboyantly ornate. Embrace these nuances and you will discover that 'brown' is most definitely back, and this time it's here to stay.

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