Monthly Archives: June 2016

Vintage Summer Style and Antique Furniture

We have just crossed the halfway point of the year (can you believe it?) and it seems like a good time to look back on our best vintage summer style and antique furniture posts from the last four months. Here are our favorite home decor stories to inspire you!

Silver Spoon Chandelier Pendant Light FixtureEarly in the spring we heard that Consumer Reports magazine would feature one of our upcycled vintage chandeliers in their Kitchen Planning and Buying Guide.

We were delighted as our spoondeliers and pretty vintage teacup and spoon chandeliers are very popular and they are made by an artisan right here in the USA.

Read the whole Silver Spoon Chandelier in Consumer Reports story with photos from client homes.

Antique Chairs and TableIt’s always a joy to write our client spotlights about the new and antique furniture our customers bought from us and how great it looks in their homes. This one really caught our attention though, with antique French Renaissance chairs, the famous Aztec calendar stone and the singer Axl Rose, of the band Guns N’ Roses! To top it off, our client Bernard, who told us this great story, also lives in Hawaii with fantastic views.

Art Deco Buffet 18-33We recently received a container of antique furniture from France that included some amazing Art Deco buffets. We chose these buffets and sideboards because we love the look of Art Deco furniture and the pieces are exceptional.

They all have the spirited glamor and glitz of the Art Deco era, as well as the sophistication and craftsmanship that we expect from French furniture makers of the 1930s.

So I wrote a post about Classic Art Deco Style using these Art Deco buffets as examples to point up the features of this period of furniture. I’d love to hear if you enjoy this style as much as we do!

Jonathan Charles Home Office FurnitureWhen everyone was busy with spring cleaning and tax time (yay – that’s behind us for another year!) I wrote a series of blog posts about beautiful home office decor.

It was fun to think about how to create an enjoyable home office, from picking the perfect desk to choosing home office accents.

Top Grain Leather Sofa Antique LookI also got lucky and picked up some great tips about different types of leather and leather furniture care from one of the leather furniture makers that we work with.

They are a small family business and so they have time to chat and correspond with me and give me info and advice. So I passed that on to our blog readers in my post about Top-Grain vs. Split-Grain Leather and Leather Furniture Care. Read that and you’ll know how to take care of your favorite leather furniture. You’d be surprised at some of the mistakes people make!

mediterraneanflowerpotMy final favorite blog post recently was inspired by Mother’s Day! I made up a bunch of flower pots and hanging baskets for my mom and that made me think about Great Ways to Decorate the Garden with Flower Pots.

I hope you enjoy browsing through my favorite vintage style and antique furniture blog posts as much as I enjoy sharing them with you!

AimeeAvatarAimee owns EuroLuxHome.com with her husband and best friend, Greg. Aimee sources amazing antique furniture, vintage lighting, & high-quality reproduction furniture to help her customers decorate their homes in a unique way. She loves her 8 (you read that right) fuzzy children and is renovating a 1920s bungalow in South Carolina. Find us on Facebook or connect with EuroLux on Google+. Or you can sign up here to receive this blog in your inbox.

Client Spotlight: Antique French Buffet Louis XV

Antique Buffet Louis XV Rococo 1890Melodie A. of Raja Interiors in Chico, CA, wanted to find a gorgeous, antique Louis XV buffet to place in one of her client’s homes. We went searching for the perfect piece and located this beauty in France!

It is delightfully carved with Rococo styling in walnut wood with a lovely grain and rich patina and it dates to 1890.

When we found the buffet in France, there was a crack all the way through the glass in the right upper corner of the large glass door.

Perhaps a little wrinkle is not such a surprise for a buffet that is about 120 years old! What is more surprising is that we find so many of our antique buffets with the glass still in excellent shape. Those French craftsmen made furniture to last!

broken glass

We knew we would replace that glass panel prior to shipping, but we had no idea that it would take a specialist to cut and hand-grind the bevel. We took the broken pieces to our local glass store and they explained that due to the unusual shape of the glass (it sort of resembles a paisley), their machines could not possibly cut a bevel all the way around the piece. We also didn’t want to just replace it with flat glass, as that would take away from the beauty of the buffet.

After much searching and networking, I finally located a true artist, Charles Offutt, at Artisan in Glass, in Canton, Georgia. I sent the pieces to him and he said it took an entire day to hand-grind the beveled edge of the replacement glass. He is truly a miracle-worker in glass! If I didn’t know which panel had been replaced, I would never be able to tell. Here’s the buffet with the restored glass in its new home.

French Antique Buffet 1890

Melodie was very patient during this process and she contacted me to say that she received the buffet in good condition and both she and her client are very pleased. We are always glad to hear from happy customers! At more than 8 feet tall, the antique Louis XV buffet is definitely the grand dame of the space. That white ceramic pitcher sets it off so gracefully too. You could say: “It’s pitcher perfect!” Groan…

AimeeAvatarAimee owns EuroLuxHome.com with her husband and best friend, Greg. Aimee sources amazing antique furniture, vintage lighting, & high-quality reproduction furniture to help her customers decorate their homes in a unique way. She loves her 8 (you read that right) fuzzy children and is renovating a 1920s bungalow in South Carolina. Find us on Facebook or connect with EuroLux on Google+. Or you can sign up here to receive this blog in your inbox.

 

Top-Grain vs. Split-Grain Leather and Leather Furniture Care

AT-4 Leather Chesterfield SetteeIn my recent customer spotlight about interior designer Charity and the new antiqued leather settee she bought from us,  I mentioned that leather sofas, chairs, stools and benches are among our top sellers.

One of the leather furniture makers that we work with is a small family business, and they gave me some great info about the different types of leather and the care of leather.Top Grain cream leather sofa

My first lesson was about the difference between top-grain and split-grain leather. Full-grain leather is the natural whole hide, but that whole hide is usually split into layers for making furniture upholstery. (Think of it like peeling two slices of bread apart!)
Both cuts of leather are true 100% leather and each one is wonderful for different purposes, looks, type of furniture and price points.

Red Leather Cloister counter stoolThe top-grain is the cut from the hair side of the leather. It is the most common type of leather used in high-end leather products as it is smooth and pliable.
The traditional top-grain leather look is shiny and smooth and soft to the touch, with natural color and texture variations.  Many of our sofas and chairs are top-grain leather.

The split-grain is from the flesh side. It is a tougher and thicker cut of leather and it is usually at a slightly lower price point. After the split is made, this layer of leather has a fuzzy suede look on both sides and it is light in color. Then it is finished to give it the look and feel of top-grain leather. Usually this includes applying color and a clear protective top coat.

Leather Furniture Care

Leather is porous and it’s made up of around 12-14% water which keeps it so luxuriously supple. But even though it is such a sturdy and timeless upholstery material, you do need to avoid things that will dry the leather out. For example, it’s best to keep it away from a heater or from direct sun right beneath a window.

Top Grain Leather sofa hand-made in USATo clean leather furniture, only use a water based leather cleaner. Before my leather lesson from the furniture makers, I didn’t know how bad the leather conditioners are that you can buy in supermarkets and chain stores. I never thought about it for leather, but it is just like all of those furniture sprays that are also bad for your furniture and create a waxy build-up.

New Madison Leather Club ChairMy leather expert said never to use regular household products to clean and care for leather. This includes products containing oils, waxes or silicones, as they dry out the leather big time! Most “conditioners” contain waxes or oils while furniture polish contains silicones. These all ruin the leather finish. Car cleaners with oils or waxes can leave residue that acts like a magnet to dirt, creating a build-up and finally cracking of the leather. Chemicals in many leather wipes also destroy the finish and dry out the hide so it peels.

Baby wipes are terrible for leather too as is dishwashing liquid as it has a high salt content and will ruin your finish. What about Saddle Soap? That should be OK, right? Wrong! The finish on beautiful leather furniture is not the same as saddle leather, so keep the saddle soap in the stable!

Top Grain Leather Sofa Antique LookAfter cleaning with a water based leather cleaner and nothing else, treat the leather furniture with a good water based leather protector. This creates a protective barrier, preventing dirt and stains from soaking into the leather.

Regularly wiping the leather with a damp cloth helps to clean dirt and body oils from the furniture in addition to helping rehydrate the leather – it’s nature’s own moisturizer! Take care of your top-grain or split-grain leather furniture and it will be look handsome and feel great for years!

AimeeAvatarAimee owns EuroLuxHome.com with her husband and best friend, Greg. Aimee sources amazing antique furniture, vintage lighting, & high-quality reproduction furniture to help her customers decorate their homes in a unique way. She loves her 8 (you read that right) fuzzy children and is renovating a 1920s bungalow in South Carolina. Find us on Facebook or connect with EuroLux on Google+. Or you can sign up here to receive this blog in your inbox.

Art Deco Buffets: Classic Art Deco Style

Art Deco Buffet 18-33A while ago I wrote about how to identify Art Deco furniture and decorative items in my post: What is the Art Deco Style of Antiques?   We recently had a container shipped from France with some beautiful antique Art Deco buffets and they are such fine examples of Art Deco, I’m using those pieces to show you more details of the style.

As a reminder, the Art Deco style was popular in the 1920s and 1930s, reflecting the modern thinking of the Jazz Age and a new taste for sleek and streamlined furniture and architecture.

Prominent and well-defined curves and lines are key elements of the style. This curvy 1920 Art Deco buffet (right, item 18-33) is a fabulous example, 

Art Deco Buffet 18-25The hotels of Miami’s South Beach and Manhattan’s iconic Chrysler Building and the Empire State Building are great examples of Art Deco architecture. Applied decoration is also important to the Art Deco look, including stylized floral designs, sunbursts, and geometrics.

This 1920 buffet (item 18-25) from our recent shipment creates a striking architectural silhouette with the curved posts supporting the upper hutch. Elegant floral carvings across the doors add a decorative accent, as do the dramatic metal handles. It is simply impossible to ignore the attention-grabbing allure of an authentic Art Deco buffet. Although the style is streamlined, it is not shy!

Art Deco Buffet Antique 18-38Part of the sleek appeal of Art Deco furniture lies in the use of glossy and shiny materials, including glass, mirror, lacquered finishes and metals. That reflective edge creates much of the glamor we associate with Art Deco. It always looks ready for a party! This walnut buffet dating to 1920 (item 18-38) has plenty of gloss in the mirror-backed upper hutch with a glass door. The mirror panel in the center of the buffet behind the posts reflects light too, above the impressive red/black/grey marble counter. Shine up your chrome cocktail shaker and dress up in your finest Roaring Twenties outfit!

French Art Deco Buffet 18-35Marble had been used in architecture since ancient times, of course, but when Art Deco furniture makers started using it, it added that opulence we expect of Art Deco. It is luxurious, but in a very modern way. This French Art Deco buffet (item 18-35) boasts three slabs of black marble as counters in addition to the mirrored back and glass-front cabinet. By now, you’ll recognize that the bold linear design on the cabinet front, topped by carved exotic foliage, is typical of the Art Deco style.

Marble on Art Deco Buffet 18-35Here’s a close-up of the black marble, so you can see how attractive the pattern is against the curving carved posts.

To see more of the exceptional design details from this era, take a look at all our antique Art Deco Buffets. It’s is appropriate that they are French buffets because Art Deco was named after the Exposition Internationale des Arts Decoratifs held in Paris in 1925. This event showcased many of the exciting new designs.

You might also enjoy my post about our customer Betty in Florida who bought an Art Deco buffet for her unusual vintage home!

AimeeAvatarAimee owns EuroLuxHome.com with her husband and best friend, Greg. Aimee sources amazing antique furniture, vintage lighting, & high-quality reproduction furniture to help her customers decorate their homes in a unique way. She loves her 8 (you read that right) fuzzy children and is renovating a 1920s bungalow in South Carolina. Find us on Facebook or connect with EuroLux on Google+. Or you can sign up here to receive this blog in your inbox.