Thursday, 19 February 2015

London Fashion Week: Stay ahead of the trends at Alfies

Unless you've been hibernating for the past fortnight you'll know that London Fashion Week is upon us for another season, showcasing over 250 designers to a global audience of influential media and retailers. Most of the fashion squad will be congregating at Somerset House as usual, and key trends for the season seem to be the 1970s, texture and fringing, monochrome and floral. Ahead of the action - which runs from tomorrow Friday, 20 February until Tuesday, 24 February 2015 - we look at the trends for SS15 and some #LFW inspired pieces available here at Alfies.


Pair of Black & White 1950s Table Lamps. From The Moderns.

1930s Cream Vellum Suitcase. From Tin Tin Collectables.

1970s/1980s German Phillips Wall Clock. From Eclectic Antiques & Contemporary.


1970s Dress by Lee Bender at BUS STOP. From Tin Tin Collectables.

Decorative pansy design brooch 1930s to 1940s. From Moe Heidarieh.

Floral Design Brooch from the 1930s/1940s. From Moe Heidarieh.

Best of the 1970s

1978 Ant chairs designed by Arne Jacobsen. From Francesca Martire.

1970s glass bead necklace. From Velvet Atelier.

1970s helmet color television. From Thirteen Interiors.

18c Gold and Pearl earrings and ring set. From Gareth Brooks.

1970s David Rowland 40/4 Stackable Chairs. From Eclectic Antiques & Contemporary.

1970s Dress by Sharons Shoppe. From Tin Tin Collectables.

Friday, 13 February 2015

A Vintage Valentine's at Alfies

Saint Valentine's Day, also known as Valentine's Day or the Feast of Saint Valentine sees card shop sales booming and men all over the world rushing out to late night garages for a bunch of less-than-fresh roses. 
14th February first became a celebration during the Roman Empire and was started by one of the earlier Christian saints named Valentinus. Popular legend says that Saint Valentine of Rome was imprisoned for performing weddings for soldiers who were forbidden to marry and for ministering to Christians, who were persecuted under the Roman Empire. According to legend, during his imprisonment, he healed the daughter of his jailer, Asterius. An embellishment to this story states that before his execution he wrote her a letter signed "Your Valentine" as a farewell. Today, Saint Valentine's Day is an official feast day in the Anglican Communion, as well as in the Lutheran Church.
Geoffrey Chaucer first linked the date with romantic love in the Middle Ages, when the tradition of courtly love flourished. Then, during 18th-century England, the day evolved into an occasion when lovers expressed their love for each other by presenting flowers, confectionery, and sending greeting cards (known as "valentines"). 
Nowadays Valentine's Day symbols are hearts, doves, and the figure of the winged Cupid. Since the 19th century, handwritten valentines have given way to mass-produced greeting cards.
It's certainly a time of year where everyone gets soppy again. Still, your Valentine's gift needn't be a cliché! Alfies offers a variety of weird and wonderful items that would make the perfect gift this St Valentine's Day. Here's a selection of the staff at Alfies' favourites:

Welsh Love spoon - these spoons used to be carved in one piece by the boys for their sweetheart, offered by Paola & Iaia - The Originals

Pair of 1950s earrings. Offered by Paola & Iaia - The Originals

Early Victorian or late Georgian cut steel hair comb set on a tortoiseshell comb. Offered by Gareth Brooks

1940s Italian micro-mosaic pendant with tiny pieces of glass intricately arranged into mosaics. Offered by Paola & Iaia - The Originals

1960s Disney Valentine's cards, from Eclectic Antiques & Contemporary

9ct Gold Victorian Cufflinks. Offered by Gareth Brooks

Metal & celluloid ornament - usually called No Trump and used by Bridge players
in the 1930s - offered by 
Paola & Iaia - The Originals

A selection of Limoges heart boxes, offered by Hayman & Hayman.

Finish off your gift shopping with a heart shaped scone in Alfies' Roof Top Kitchen. Aww!

Friday, 6 February 2015

Royal Doulton, A Fine Figure

At Alfies we have a beautiful collection of Royal Doulton figures offered by our dealer Chris of Janes Antiques. 

Royal Doulton started in 1815 producing tableware and collectables. Operating originally in London, its reputation grew in the pottery industry, where it was a latecomer compared to Royal Crown Derby, Minton and Wedgwood. There are some little known facts about The Royal Doulton Company, below are some of our favourites.

During the 1840s the company saw considerable success and was said to have made a small fortune by manufacturing and supplying products that are vastly different to those which they're known for today: sewage pipes!

The 'HN' on the serial number represents the initials of one of the figurines' painters, Harry Nixon, which started to be used as part of the labeling system way back in 1913.

Although Royal Doulton figurines look rather fragile they are actually quite strong as they are made from cornish stone, china clay and calcined bone ash.

Here is just a small selection of what there is on offer from Janes Antiques:

'Autumn Breeze' HN 194.

'The Laird' 1970, with 'Hunting Dog With Pheasant', HN 1029

'Rowena' 1950, HN 2077

'The Parsons Daughter' HN 564

'Fleur' 1967 HN 2368

'Thank You' 1982, HN 2732

'Good King Wenceslas' 1952, HN 2118

'The Wardrobe Mistress' 1953, HN 2145

Friday, 30 January 2015

Knot Just A Scarf

With winter well upon us it's time to wrap up and keep warm. But why just keep warm with a plain coat or hat when you can add a touch of style and class with a fabulous neckerchief. Here at Alfies you can find a beautiful array of silk, designer and illustrated vintage scarves available from Tin Tin Collectables

Here are just a few Alfies have to offer;

A 1950s scarf by Jacqmar (artist unknown) of the R.M.S. Queen Mary. Heavily detailed with great costume references.

“Jacqmar Presenting”  has sketched images representing various BBC Home Service programmes. The message on this scarf was to encourage people to listen only to the BBC. 1940s rayon scarf by Arnold Lever for Jacqmar.

Founded by Joseph “Jack” Lyons and his wife Mary in 1932. The couple felt that J H Lyons did not sound classy enough so they combined their first names and Jacqmar was born. Based in a very elegant house on 16 Grosvenor Street in Mayfair, the company was originally a supplier of fine silks to the London and Paris couture houses but discovered that being left with fabric remnants was not cost effect, together they worked on the idea of producing scarves made from the left over fabric and today are one of the most famous producers of silk scarves.

A 1950s scarf ‘Pennies from Heaven’ by Marcel Vertes.
A 1942 scarf ‘Combined Operations’ was formed by Churchill to bring together the best of British Military. 

The 8th Army Air Force scarf by Arnold Lever. This scarf contains the names of bombers and fighter planes of the US 8th Army Air Force.

The WW2 propaganda Jacqmar scarves designed by Arnold Lever are some of the most rare and sought after scarves to be produced. So much so that some of his designs are now collected as museum pieces. His amazing designs show an insight into life during the war. Although silk could not be used during WW2 it wasn't long until the scarves came back into production and ladies were able to purchase again from 1945.

A 1943 propaganda scarf depicts Winston Churchill with his iconic cigar and extracts from his most famous speeches.
A 1950s scarf depicting the interior of the Royal Opera House Covent Gardens. Printed by Jacqmar - artist possibly Arnold Lever.
The Lullington Silk Scarf

This signed Arnold Lever scarf depicts the Lullington Silk mills. The background is mulberry leaves with a silk loom in the foreground, the whole machine being operated by a ‘crowned’ silk worm. Lulington silk famously produced silk for Queen Elizabeth's wedding dress.

'All around the underground’ a 1950s humorous scarf by Arnold Lever depicting images of the underground seen from different stations.

The company carried on throughout the 1950s, 60s and 70s with continued designs of scenic renderings, bold colours, and geometric shapes. Today Jacqmar remains one of the most sought after designers leading the way in designing and producing silk scarves.

For more information and to view the full range available pop in for a visit and speak to Tin Tin Collectables on our ground floor.

Friday, 23 January 2015

Furniture & Design at Alfies

The annual Decorative Antiques & Textiles Fair, from 20 to 25 January, unites the antiques and interior design trades. The fair brings together a wide range of decorative antiques, 20th century design, collectors’ items, art and accessories.

Alfies is the perfect destination for those who like to furnish their home with aesthetically pleasing objects, each item is carefully sourced by our dealers and of the utmost quality. On each floor you will find an outstanding selection of furniture, homeware, art and lighting. You will also find a lot of highly acclaimed designer pieces such as the Result Chair by Friso Kramer (offered by Design SECT), the 1970s Artona Dining Set by Afra & Tobia Scarpa (offered by The Moderns), or the black leather Charles Eames soft pad office chair, offered by Francesca Martire.

If you appreciate good design, feast your eyes on the following items, all available at Alfies:

Italian 1950s Chandelier with Decorated Glass Shades, offered by The Moderns

Mid-Century oak writing desk, offered by Design SECT
Sculptural chest of drawers by Christian Maas with original certificate, offered by Sambataro Decorative Arts
1930s green Keith Murray vase, offered by Beth
Mid century globes, offered by Travers Antiques
Wooden chests of drawers, lined on the outside with zinc. Industrial look. Art Deco, French. Offered by Nadine Okker

Assorted mid century pineapples, offered by Louise Verber Antiques
Large French abstract rug c1960, offered by Martin Rooney 
1970s Murano glass vase, offered by Eclectic Antiques & Contemporary

And with Burns Night fast approaching, why not celebrate in style with vintage whisky glasses from Robinson Antiques or W & L Antiques, and the Edwardian Whisky Dispenser (below) from Tin Tin Collectables Luggage.

Edwardian etched glass whisky dispenser, offered by Tin Tin Collectables Luggage
Robinson Antiques stock a fine selection of antique glassware including cocktail glasses, champagne coupes, decanters, wine and whisky glasses.

Thursday, 15 January 2015

NEW! in at Alfies

January blues? Bored of the sales? Brighten up your week by checking out some new pieces here at Alfies.

Pelham marionette puppets from the 1950s and 1960s, offered by Eclectic Antiques & Contemporary.
Thunder Birds pelham puppets boxed and unused, vintage 1960s. Offered by Eclectic Antiques & Contemporary.
Pair of 1960s lamps with a wood and iron base and stand. Offered by Good Time Antiques.

Polka dice bottle opener from the 1950s. Offered by Robinson Antiques.

The London Art Fair

The London Art Fair starts next week. In its 27th edition; this year it will take place at The Business Design Centre from 21-25 January 2015Highly renowned Modern British art is presented alongside contemporary work from today's leading, and unknown, artists. The fair covers the period from the early 20th century to present day. There are also two curated sections focusing on younger galleries, new work and contemporary photography.

Alfies has a long history of supporting contemporary art and design and many Alfies dealers specialise in prints, paintings and sculpture. Here is a selection of our favourite pieces.

Cubist Man With Guitar, oil on board painting. Offered by Robert McKoy Fine Arts.

Pair of stylised owl, bronze, radiator ornaments, c1925. Mounted as book ends. Signed Ed. M. Sandoz and Susse Frères. Offered by Angry Agent.

Oil portrait in the style of Hollands famous 17th century painter Frans Hals by Henri Wouter, 1866-1936. Offered by The Moderns.

A pair of very attractive abstract form swan sculptures in cast bronze from France C 1970. Offered by Travers Antiques.

Poppy Field by the Sea, by Pascal Bueno. b.1930. Offered by Diplomat Treasures International.

Geometric abstract Op Art style painting, acrylic on board. Painter: Roel Rolleman, Holland, 1983.  Offered by The Moderns.
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