Autumn Decorative Fair highlights

10/01/2015 10:07:00 pm HELEN STILES 0 Comments

Yesterday I headed down to Battersea Park to check out the Autumn Decorative Antiques & Textiles Fair. Now I'm by no means an antiques-die-hard, but I do love to mix vintage with modern in my interiors. I really think you need some patina and variety to bring a room to life - if everything is new then, no matter how tasteful or stylish the pieces, it just lacks personality and soul. And the format of the Decorative Fair is great, it brings together antiques with interior design and usually has some fabulous lighting and 20th century furniture. But it's the creative and quirky stands that I love most - it's a great source of inspiration on how to display objects.

As soon as I get off the tube at Sloane Square to wait for the courtesy bus it seems a far cry from my usual stomping ground of East London. There's a very prim and proper air to proceedings – and to the attendees' attire – with which I am never entirely comfortable! But not to be dissuaded, I jump on the bus and head off to enjoy some interiors-porn (the flyer alone had me hooked – vintage textiles, 1970s lighting, orange upholstery and brass accents – what's not to love?!)   

So, I thought I'd share 3 of my favourite things...please forgive the smart-phone photography!

  1. Fabulous vintage lighting – there was just so much that I really struggled to pick a few to share. There were enormous French chandeliers, beautiful Murano glass pendants and industrial scissor wall-lamps. But I have a thing for brass at the moment (it just makes everything look cooler and more sophisticated!) so had to choose these Italian 1950s wall and ceiling lights. And these hand-blown glass grape pendants would be great for adding some drama and texture.

2. Stunning art - everything from huge colourful abstract oils to framed vintage wallpaper designs to beautiful portraits. I loved this moody portrait of a young woman - she looks tired but determined (maybe that's what struck a chord?!) but she'd look great pretty much anywhere in my book.

3. Quirky accessories - check out these wooden milliners' heads! Displayed en-masse they make a real statement - and the crowns/tiaras add a witty touch. Ok, so most of us would probably just have one of these to store a hat or add personality to a shelf...but a whole crowd of them looks way cooler.

 So if you love a bit of interiors inspiration, with a slightly eccentric/eclectic vibe, then I'd highly recommend a visit. The next fair will be in January 2016, and you can find more information on their website here.  Although next time I visit I'll leave the wobbly, croissant-eating 1 year-old at home (she seemed to make me strangely unwelcome on the vintage textile stands...)