Ok. I am going to try this blogging thing again. Maybe this time I can keep on a schedule. But don’t count on it. My life has a way of spinning out of control. My plan is to write about the awesome treasures we list for sale each week either on our own website or other online platforms where we sell i.e. 1stdibs, Chairish, eBay Collective, and Invaluable. Let’s see how it goes!
This week going live are five really varied items: a trio of antique concrete garden urns, an interesting curule or Savonarola chair, an outstanding Henredon faux bamboo canopy bed, two gold brocade Art Deco chairs, and a fun and handsome pair of ibex or ram’s heads created as a table base (but I love them as a centerpiece!)
Let’s start with the garden urns. Comprised of concrete and having an old and patinated salmon colored original paint finish, they originally came from a home in a prestigious housing development in Topeka, Kansas called Westboro. The house was built during the height of Westboro’s establishment circa 1920s-1930s and these urns sat upon three brick pillars that formed a small courtyard. They have great proportion and symmetry and are adorned with a wonderful leaf pattern and, although their intended purpose is for outside use and as a planter, I adore them as a centerpiece on a long dining table or credenza. I’ve used them in my showroom to hold everything from fruit to Christmas orbs and pinecones to poinsettias. You can find them here.
Next is the perfect Santa chair and just right for posting this week before Christmas, the wrought iron and cast brass Curule or Savonarola chair. This throne-like chair with its dramatic classic look is a great character piece for any space. It will fit in with an elegant and ornate room or be awesome standing in contrast to less “fancy” furnishings. This one is a fantastic 20th century example of the Savonarola chair, which can also be called Curule chair, X-frame chair, Dante chair, Dantesca chair, or scissors chair. The title Savonarola comes from the name of Italian Renaissance Dominican friar, Girolamo Savonarola, who is renowned for his clash with tyrannical rulers and corrupt clergy. The original Savonarola chair was a type of folding chair with an X frame. It was designed to fold so it was portable and used during campaigns or other outdoor pursuits. You can find this Hollywood Regency styled one here on our website.
As I work my way though the five items we listed this week the middle one is a stunning canopy faux bamboo queen-sized bed attributed to Henredon and in the style of infamous designer James Mont. The bed is done in an Asian campaign design which was a mainstay of James Mont’s work. James Mont was dubbed the bad boy of American design due to his association as designer to the Mafiosi including Frank Costello and “Lucky” Luciano who became not only clients but friends. He also ingratiated himself into the lives of show business figures the likes of Bob Hope, Irving Berlin, and Lana Turner. Mont’s shady associations were second, however, to the damage his horrible temper created. In 1937 twenty-nine days after marrying actress, Helen Kim, she was found dead in their apartment and though her death was ruled suicide, many suspected it was Mont’s temper that played a role in her death. Then in 1940 he was convicted of assault after attacking lampshade designer, Dorothy Burns, putting her in the hospital for two weeks, and spent 5-10 years in Sing-Sing. Sadly, Ms. Burns was so humiliated and bothered by the attack that she hung herself before the trial ended. Even with all the bad juju surrounding James Mont his designs were amazing and highly regarded, even today! You can find this incredible canopy bed here.
Next to last on this week’s list of awesome vintage furnishing are a pair of Art Deco or Art Moderne armchairs in their original gold floral brocade. They are simply beautiful and the epitome of the sleek and elegant designs of the Art Deco and Art Moderne era. Their almost heart shaped backs flow into gently rounded and angled back arms that seem to reach out to hold you. You can view and purchase this pair, as with all our items, here on our website.
Last on this week’s list of great and unique offerings is a pair of brass ibex or ram’s heads done in the manner of Alain Chervet. Their stunning and over-the-top glamour is awesome with their long and curled horns. The pair are intended to be a table base; but, as is common for me, I have brought them into use as a phenomenal centerpiece. They especially beautiful and interesting when surrounded by a series of extraordinary candlesticks or intertwined with garland. You can make this unique pair yours here.
So, this concludes my ramblings on the offerings we have searched out, found, cleaned-up, restored, photographed, researched, written about, and submitted to you for sale to make a one-of-a-kind treasure in your home, your abode, or your castle. Come back next week, hopefully I stay on schedule with a new blog post about the next series of items we find for you.
Enjoy your life and your home! Chris