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Old 25.11.2018, 21:48
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Antique furniture

I take the view with furniture that I’m too poor to buy cheap stuff. Would rather buy quality and keep forever.

Planning on furnishing an apartment, and looking at antique on Ricardo.ch. I get the first impression that it isn’t punishingly expensive. Is that justified?
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Old 25.11.2018, 21:55
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Re: Antique furniture

Don't look on Ricardo for 'real' antiques. Go hunting in the second hand shops. I can recommend Brienz. They have some great second-hand shops full of old furniture that needs a new home.
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Old 25.11.2018, 22:08
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Re: Antique furniture

Antique, quality furniture, is really good value in Switzerland. Flats are too small, and young Swiss people just do not value older furniture (antique definition is officially + 100 years old).
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Old 25.11.2018, 23:30
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Re: Antique furniture

I suppose also no wars / revolutions or other upheavals also helps.
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Old 26.11.2018, 11:40
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Re: Antique furniture

If you think what you find in Switzerland is cheap for antiques, hop over to France! I live close to Alsace, where I have founds some real gems. Went a bit nuts when we first moved here as antiques are a fraction of the price you would pay in the US. (Even considering starting a business.) It seems that modern minimalism is appreciated more in European culture these days. Goodie for us!
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Old 26.11.2018, 12:12
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Re: Antique furniture

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I suppose also no wars / revolutions or other upheavals also helps.
Maybe that helps.

But on the other hand the whole modernist thing started a bit earlier in Switzerland than it did in other countries. So maybe on the whole there was less good stuff produced, or less of it has survived. I have the impression that many antique dealers in Switzerland import much of what they have. And also that the more restrained English and German styles sell better than the very opulent French style. But maybed in the Romandie that is different.
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Old 26.11.2018, 12:46
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Re: Antique furniture

The antique dealers I know in the Neuchâtel area don't sell any imported stuff- at all. They export quite a lot to the USA though.

Again, as per usual, things are very different depending on region. Much much cheaper to find good stuff in some areas than in others. Avoid Zurich, Geneva and Rivieras with lots of tourists.
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Old 26.11.2018, 16:05
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Re: Antique furniture

The best undiscovered antiques these days are being found in the Balkans. No matter if your taste runs to the 17th, 18th, 19th or 20th centuries, they've still got treasures hiding in their attics, garages and barns.



For decades, I and every other antique dealer, found all of our 18th and 19th century stock in the UK and in France.


We would fill containers up with mahogany and oak bureaux and sideboards and butcher's blocks and sell them back in the Americas for three times the price.


Those days are long gone and any antique dealer with a brain started specializing in mid-century modern "antiques" because that is what the market was asking for. There was an awesome run between 1998 and 2010 where you could still find iconic designer furniture at second hand shops, granny's basement and even, sometimes in skips, because the general population did not have a clue what an Eames side chair was. I have an 8,000 dollar sofa sitting in my living room that I bought at a garage sale in Pittsburgh for 33 dollars in 2002.


So, today, to rack up on those crazy mark-ups, you have to venture further afield to Romania, Moldova, Serbia, etc. where you can still find 50's furniture in basements and barns and the owners do not know what they have. Having said that, however, you can still stumble upon a real gem from time to time, even in Switzerland.


I got a Walter Bosse hedgehog two years ago at the annual brocante in Isle sur Morges for 2 francs. They had no clue. The antiques business is all about perseverance. It is a hunt. And, it is absolutely addicting!
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Old 26.11.2018, 17:00
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Re: Antique furniture

I have various tems of 1950s and 1960s furniture in the basebemt. A pair of moulded plywood chairs, a set of bedside tables and several wardrobes and linen cupboards with hideous fake veneer. Also a pair of armchairs on which the upholstery is falling to pieces and also some wooden stools on which you can raise the hinged seat and store things underneath. I must take a look at them some day to see if anything has any value.

I never really cared much for it which is why I moved it all down to the baement. I'm more into real antiques myself.
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Old 26.11.2018, 17:38
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Re: Antique furniture

Amogles, if you take a photo of it, I can tell you if it is worth anything. Just from your description, the things that have lift-up-seats for storage are probably not worth a lot. (But molded plywood is very interesting. Maybe if you just PM me a photo of those chairs, that would be awesome, lol)

Last edited by TheSpouse; 26.11.2018 at 17:49. Reason: Addition after kicking myself in the head
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Old 26.11.2018, 18:27
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Re: Antique furniture

Quote:
The antique dealers I know in the Neuchâtel area don't sell any imported stuff- at all. They export quite a lot to the USA though.
What dealers do you know? I am starting work in that area next week. Thanks!

Happy to share some of mine too in case anyone is interested...
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Old 26.11.2018, 18:39
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Re: Antique furniture

In the Neuchâtel region, you mean?
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Old 26.11.2018, 18:49
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Re: Antique furniture

Our apartment is basically full of antiques, most from the 1800s, apart one bed from the late 1600s or early 1700s (stuff my wife inherited from her parents) and a French bureau from the 1700s.

Tom
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Old 26.11.2018, 19:42
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Re: Antique furniture

Is it worth hunting in Germany or France, or not worth hassle versus sticking in Switzerland?
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Old 26.11.2018, 20:27
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Re: Antique furniture

Quote:
In the Neuchâtel region, you mean?
Yes
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Old 26.11.2018, 20:41
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Re: Antique furniture

Here is a good list:

https://www.neuchatelnet.ch/magasins/antiquites.html

Richard Père et fils, in Bevaix, is perhaps my favourite. It's a jungle - with many rooms to visit in al old house - you need a few hours

Two nearby towns are famous for their antique shops, Le Landeron and beautiful St Ursanne, not too far from Basel.

Last edited by Odile; 27.11.2018 at 10:29.
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Old 26.11.2018, 22:04
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Re: Antique furniture

I found that in the north Vaudois area there are several "barns" filled with antiques for sale (Or I think they might be antiques at least). Normally you can reconize them by the handpainted sign saying "Brocante" next to the road. Maybe worth exploring the little villages on the Jura side of the canton?


Myself, I mostly "do" 20th century pieces, which I tend to hoard to an alarming level.. Right now i am trying to thin down my collection of 3 Eames Lounge Chairs to maybe 1, let's see.
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Old 26.11.2018, 22:43
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Re: Antique furniture

Any tips for the other side of the Röstigraben?
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Old 26.11.2018, 22:57
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Re: Antique furniture

My wife might want to sell some stuff, plus she has some in Italy.

What are you looking for?

Tom
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Old 26.11.2018, 23:04
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Re: Antique furniture

I have seen some really nice furniture sell for just a few francs in Ricardo.ch.

As somebody mentioned, most people do not know what they have so try looking in the "Haushalt & Wohnen" section rather than "Antiquitäten & Kunst".

From the other side I have from time to time been asked by ancient relatives to sell some really nice items of furniture dating from 50s/60s & found a tremendous lack of buying interest. Shame to throw such stuff away!
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