In past blogs, we’ve looked at great London auctioneers where you can find wonderful pieces from all kinds of eras (mid-century modern is currently the hot period). Whether you’re furnishing a new home or simply refreshing an existing one, getting items of furniture from the past rather than the present is a sure-fire way to imbue your rooms with atmosphere and character. But auctions aren’t the only answer. There are also second-hand furniture shops in London where you won’t have to bid but can simply sweep in, grab what captures your imagination and then sweep out again. Here are three that have caught our eye:
- Alfies Antique Market, 13-25 Church Street, London NW8 8DT
Situated in the northern reaches of Marylebone, this – the capital’s largest indoor antiques market. It’s known to attract both glitzy, celebrity shoppers as well as locals and people from all corners of the city. Alfies (no apostrophe, apparently) has been going for 40 years and is a rambling space set over a number of floors (cafe at the top). It’s in an Art Deco building and inside there’s a feeling of pure Bohemia. As well as furniture, there are plenty of decorative curios and some vintage fashion.
- The Old Cinema, 160 Chiswick High Road, London W4 1PR
Here you’ll find vintage armchairs, bookcases, wardrobes, sideboards, desks, chests of drawers, dining tables and much, much more. With styles ranging from Art Deco to Indian to Danish and Mid-Century, there’s no taste that isn’t catered for. It all takes place in a converted cinema which was the area’s local picture house until 1934. It bills itself as “London’s only antique, vintage and retro department store” and has been operating since 1979.
- Bermondsey Antiques Market, Bermondsey Square, London SE1 3UN
Come here to peruse dozens of stalls. You’ll find traders selling everything; not just furniture but also cutlery, jewellery and china. There’s a wealth of expertise on offer and you may be able to find a bargain. The market is surrounded by cafes and restaurants where you can recharge yourself after you’ve found what you’re looking for