IN THE APRIL/MARCH 2019 ISSUE…
Hard to believe but it was this time last year that I started writing for VE. It has been such a privilege having the opportunity to talk to and get to know so many fantastic dealers, who all have great stories to tell. Although the dealers featured have all developed their own unique ‘look’ and have their own directions, there are a few things that echo from issue to issue, from dealer to dealer. Being an antiques dealer isn’t a choice, not a conscious one anyway. It’s a passion, a calling that couldn’t be ignored, just something that felt right... I often hear: “It’s not a job”. What makes being an antiques dealer special is their motive, their reason for doing what they do.
It’s a feeling, often first felt as a child growing up around ‘beautiful things’, followed by a realisation that the feeling doesn’t have to go away, it can become a way of life, one that offers excitement and most importantly, freedom. It’s rarely about money, but about that ‘feeling’ – it’s a high that dealers continue to chase.
IN THIS ISSUE: Toby Lorford tells us how selling boring brown furniture and vintage junk led to the creative force Lorfords is today, and how after a glass or two of wine, he decided to take the plunge with the RAF hangars. Matthew Cox shares his grand-father’s passion for antiques, but takes his own aesthetic approach into the 21st century with great photography and a healthy addiction to Instagram.
Joe Chaffer talks about his eccentric upbringing and his decision to give up a successful career to become a ‘Vagabond’, using his last pay cheque to buy a transit van, his dog Buster, and begin the search for exciting new possibilities. Finally, we meet mother and son combo, Martyn Fowler and Jackie Harris, who open the doors to Puckharber’s new Rye shop, literally as we go to press; and find out how a surprise visit could have been their opportunity to bag a Royal Warrant!
ISSUE 45 - APRIL/MAY 2019
issue 44 - February / March 2019
Issue 43 - December / January 2019
You have an eye for rather large European furniture, often still bearing traces of their original paint, which isn’t always easy to source? Do you have to travel a lot?
We only buy things we would want to put in our own home and luckily we both have very similar taste, we only try to buy things that have a certain patina, things with soul and a history behind them. Since we closed the shop and are now only online, we travel a lot more.
When did you start dealing?
I started dealing in my mid-twenties, just after Dawn and I met. After we bought our first house, we had very little money, so to furnish it we went to charity shops and car boots. We bought items of furniture very cheaply that we could paint, both working in the arts; we loved having colour around us.
Molly and Maud are the names of your sheep, aren’t they? How did you decide to use them to name the business?
Yes. We’re not very serious people and wanted the name to reflect that, which is how we came to name the business after our pet sheep ‘Molly and Maud’. When we started, we purchased a little wooden building and put it in an orchard behind the house, which before this, was home to Molly and Maud.
Do you come from an antique loving family? How did you get started?
My mum is the only other member of my family who loves antiques... mum used to have an antiques shop and I loved styling the displays, especially the large shop window.
I started by putting some items into the shop that I’d bought myself and then I went on to having units in antiques centres, now I have a room in a shared antiques shop, 55 Mill Street, Ludlow, Shropshire. I also sell at fairs across the country.
ISSUE 42 - OCTOBER/NOVEMBER 2018
Writing for VE has been a real privilege. I am fortunate enough to have the freedom to choose the dealers that I’d like to interview, and can say, or ask whatever I like, with no restrictions or editing. This carte blanche can go either way when talking to some of the trades biggest personalities, and after easing my way into this writing gig over the past few issues, I thought it would be a good time to chat to the trade’s most controversial dealer. Drew Pritchard is a man whose name echoes through antiques shops, fairs and living rooms all over the world. Everyone in the trade knows of him, and all seem to have formed their own opinions – some dealers are utterly inspired by his achievements, others find him obnoxious! Having never spoken to Drew before, I wanted the opportunity to form my own opinion, one based on my own experience and gut instinct rather than what I’d heard on the grapevine. Read more…