The best vintage furniture to invest in 2022


The rise in popularity of vintage furniture seems inevitable as we spend more time at home thanks to Covid-19 and turn away from fast furniture | Source: My Little Cabas

One of the greatest benefits of modern design, especially vintage mid-century modern design, is that when purchased strategically, it retains its value dramatically.

According to the London-based furniture stalwart To curesearches for used homeware hit a three-year high at the end of 2020, with pieces like Hans Wegner’s Wishbone chair seeing a 204% increase in popularity while the 60 stool and LC3 armchair Grand Modele saw their popularity increase by 155 percent and 100 percent increase in searches respectively.

Seventy Years After Its Debut, Hans Wegner’s Wishbone Chair Is Still Fresh | Source: 1st Dibs

According to Knight Frank Wealth Report, mid-century furniture is up 4% over 12 months in 2022 and 22% over 10 years.

As vintage homewares gain traction with a new generation of admirers, a few key pieces are rising to the top of the pile.

Valuable vintage furniture

The name Marcel Breuer is synonymous with the timeless style promulgated by owners of Bauhaus furniture, often seen at home in open, minimalist spaces, but well suited to most modern interiors.

Bauhaus design is all about clean, simplified forms and is a very influential school of thought, we see elements of Bauhaus design in many modern products such as iPhones and iPads.

The Wassily Chair or Model B3 was designed by Breuer when he was head of cabinetmaking at the Bauhaus in Dessau, furniture maker Gavina introduced the modern black leather version of the chair, replacing the material straps used in the original.

A classic, this modernist design is an essential start to any mid-century furniture collection with its innovative combination of steel and leather, an understated piece perfectly suited to an office or foyer.

Marcel Breuer Wassily chair $3,001 (Source: 1stdibs)

Designed in 1962 for cabinetmaker Flos by brothers Pier Giacomo and Achille Castiglioni, the Arco lamp is a symbol of the 60s swing.

The brilliant marriage of form and function of this product is what sets it apart, the suspended spun aluminum pendant attached to a vertical slab of Carrara marble by an arching stainless steel arm was revolutionary when first made and graced offices and homes very quickly. design furniture enthusiasts as soon as it was released.

Clever design is very present in the Arco floor lamp, the hole in the marble base to insert a broomstick so that two people can carry it and the arm extending a distance of 8 feet from the base to the light .

This lamp was designed to solve the riddle of wanting a floor lamp but needing a ceiling lamp and it is this innovation that gives the piece its value, so well designed that it has been in constant production at Flos since 60 years.

Arco floor lamp by Flos, AU$5,495 (Source: Living Edge)

American industrial designers, Charles Ormond Eames Jr. and Bernice Alexandra “Ray” Kaiser Eames created the Eames Lounge Chair and Ottoman in 1956 for manufacturers Herman Miller and their European counterpart, Vitra.

The chair is another distinct feature in many mid-century interiors, Eames said he drew inspiration from a well-worn first baseman’s glove with its plush leather and rosewood materials, the comfort of this chair is legendary.

Being a larger vintage piece of furniture, this item will require a good amount of space, but it is an extremely versatile design, easily fitting into a professional office or a more casual living room, the combination of soft leather and support rosewood making it both comfortable and practical.

Eames lounge chair and ottoman, AU$10,900 (Source: Living Edge)

Vintage furniture on the rise

Inspired by the round wooden seats of Ming China, the CH24 or as it is more often called today, the Wishbone Chair was designed in 1949 by Hans Wagner for Carl Hansen & Søn and has been in continuous production for 73 years.

Specifications were updated in the mid-1990s to accommodate taller Americans and Europeans buying the chair, increasing the seat by 2cm, but in East Asia, which accounts for a quarter of the chair’s sales Wishbone chair, the original measurements are still used.

An updated edition of the chair is still produced each year on Werner’s birthday with recent models including a dark oak wood version, a version with a leather seat and a navy blue iteration of the famous design.

Hans Wegner Wishbone Chair (average price) AU$1,374

The LC3 Gran Confort is upholstered with thick, resilient cushions, encased invitingly in a steel frame and is a celebrated example of a modernist response to a traditional club chair.

Used by Steve Jobs at the official launch of Apple’s iPad in 2010 and featured in the famous “blown away” Maxell commercial, where the chair’s chunky dimensions convey the pinnacle of bold modern indulgence, the subject seated firmly in the voluminous upholstery.

LC3 armchair by Le Corbusier – AUD 12,606

The Diamond Sculptural Chair is an understated yet outspoken piece, designed by Italian-born Italian artist, sculptor and modern furniture designer Harry Bertoia in 1952.

The design is an authentic slice of vintage mid-century chrome work with a highly durable adhesive fused nylon dipped finish.

“The urge for good design is the same as the urge to keep living,” Bertoia said.

Vintage examples of well-maintained chrome furniture of this quality are hard to find and this stunning piece of contemporary design is very much in vogue at the moment, its price reflecting an awake market for this style of furniture.

Diamond Chair by Harry Bertoia – AU$1,656

This gloriously plump modern vintage piece of furniture has enjoyed enormous popularity in recent years and the current price of an original reflects this, but a wave of replicas have hit the market and sifting through the examples there are some that match the invoice. terms of quality and price.

Mario Bellini is something of a design savant, having worked as an architect, industrial designer, urban planner and even as a designer for car manufacturer Renault, he has won the Compasso d’Oro, a prestigious Italian design award eight times and recently worked at Terminal 3 of Rome-Fiumicino International Airport.

Bellini designed the Camaleonda sofa in 1970 for B&B Italia and participated in the 1972 MoMA exhibition “Italy: The New Domestic Landscape”.

He said from the couch, “Cameleonda is a name I came up with by mixing two words: the first is the name of an amazing animal, the chameleon (camaleonte in Italian), which can adapt to the surrounding environment and the word onda, (wave). These two words describe the form and function of this sofa.

Sofas from the original 1972 to 1979 production have risen dramatically in value since being relaunched by B&B Italia on its 50th anniversary in 2020. Currently selling for up to AU$41,000, but there are smaller examples with the less popular beige upholstery for sale online for A$16,000-20,000 on marketplace e-commerce platforms such as 1st Dibs.

to the Mario Bellini Camaleonda leather sofa, A$20,729 (Source: 1stdibs)

With authentic vintage furniture at a good price in today’s market, online investors have plenty of opportunities to find something that is renowned for its quality and, more importantly, its future appeal.

Statement lighting is making a comeback and crystal chandeliers are the original statement of wealth and class, the world’s finest crystal made on the Venetian island of Murano.

This Italian glass and crystal manufacturing center has been producing high quality crystal for hundreds of years and the association with its reputation for quality is prized by collectors.

Many crystal chandeliers were made in the 20th century and the demand for quality original Murano examples has the potential to grow in the near future.

With the price of used original Murano crystal chandeliers ranging between A$1,900 and A$3,200, there is definitely money to be made for the savvy investor.

Vintage Murano chandelier from 107 Quadriedri, $1,992 A (Source: Etsy)

Danish furniture design has always been among the best in the world and this side table from furniture manufacturer Woud is no exception, available in oiled oak, white pigmented ash, walnut and black.

The Arc side table allows for a dynamic relationship between the piece of furniture and its user, the rounded top turning easily to reveal a covered compartment, an innovative use of the form of these Danish designers, typical of Scandinavian furniture.

Well-made and state-of-the-art, this piece of furniture has a long life and its poignant design elements and Danish construction mean it could become more collectible in the future.

Although not yet vintage, the seamless blend of function and form is characteristic of modern Danish furniture and the solid construction of this piece, with proper maintenance and care, may well mean that it retains its value well. .

Due to the difficulty in replicating the quality of Danish furniture, an original model of a dynamic piece such as this by a couple of renowned designers is well placed to appreciate in value.

Arc side table Ditte Vad and Julie Begtrup for Woud, A$839 (Source: Woud)

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