You will find every imaginable style of furniture at ER – antique, arts and crafts, art deco, mid-century, Scandinavian, country, and shabby chic, to name just a few of our styles.
Our furniture merchants continually scour the world for special pieces to showcase at ER.
There are so many stunning furniture pieces at ER that chances are you will fall in love with something on your next visit!
Antique, Modern and Mid-Century Furniture
How do you make a space your own? How do you put your unique stamp on your place? Antique furniture, modern furniture or mid-century furniture can help you do just that.
When building anything great it always starts with great foundations and that is certainly the recommendation from many interior designers. Start with great furniture, even if just a statement piece that reflects your personality and your style.
From there you build on what you have. You allow your furniture to become the foundation and you layer on top of that to create depth to your style and your vision.
Choosing the right furniture
Antique, modern and mid-century furniture has always been sought after to help set a space apart. Amongst mass-produced furniture and flat pack options being shipped by the truckload from big box stores, unique furniture is a simple way to set your style apart.
With the right piece of furniture, you don’t need to fill your home entirely with antique or vintage furniture… the right single piece can be enough to lift your space and provide the base for your vision.
Fine antique furniture
Antique furniture has long been the mainstay of decorating some of Brisbane’s finest houses and for good reason.
Queensland’s traditional construction style of timber and tin, when done well, suits the materials, craftsmanship and design of many styles of antique furniture.
But that doesn’t mean that antique furniture needs to be relegated to traditional houses.
A focus on a single, quality, luxury antique furniture piece can anchor the design style of even the most modern or minimalist design styles. The key is selecting authentic pieces that fit proportionally in the space, but more importantly speak to you and design sense.
Here are a few things to take heed of when selecting a piece of antique furniture.
- Make sure it’s antique. There’s a difference between vintage pieces and fine antiques and while a vintage piece may do the trick if you are after a true piece of antiquity it needs to be over 100 years old.
- Along with age, it is generally accepted that in order for a piece to qualify as a true antique it should not be mass-produced. This means that even if a piece is over 100 years old, if it was not handmade it is technically not counted as an antique.
- Don’t worry if a piece is not over 100 years old. If you love it and it speaks to you then get it. It may not be an antique, but it is better to follow your heart than acquire a piece that you feel nothing towards.
Some may ask, “Isn’t all new furniture modern furniture?”. The difference here is in the terminology: modern vs contemporary furniture.
In this instance modern refers to a design style whereas contemporary refers to pieces created in the trend of the day. Contemporary design is always changing where modern design is rooted in an intellectual movement that began in the early 1900s
Modern design became a rebellion against other, very ornate design styles like Gothic, Renaissance, and Victorian styles of design.
As the style is a rejection of the flourishes of these very decorative styles Modern furniture design is recognisable through a number of common characteristics:
- Use of clean, crisp, straight lines
- Use of metal, glass and steel
- Minimalism and simplicity
- Lack of clutter
- Primary accent colours
Mid-Century Modern Furniture
It was during the 40s and 50s (though there is some debate in the design community about the exact timespan referred to some going back to the 20s) that the movement really took off with designers embracing the style and producing some of the most recognizable pieces of furniture we know today. The names of these designers have also entered our common vocabulary and include:
- Charles and Ray Eames
- Florence Knoll Basset
- Ludwig Mies van der Rohe
- George Nakashima
- Herman Miller
- Arne Jacobsen
- George Nelson
While the work of these designers is rooted in the Modern style, their oeuvre became known as Mid-Century Modern.
It would not be many, with even a small interest in furniture design who do not know the following signature Mid-Century Modern furniture pieces. And while some may not recognise the name, they will instantly recognise the piece when shown.
- Eames Lounge Chair – seen in the comedy series “Frasier”
- Wassily Chair – inspired by the designer’s new bike constructed from lightweight, tubular steel.
- Arco Floor Lamp – seen in countless movies including Diamonds are Forever and The Italian Job.
- Barcelona Chair – created for Barcelona’s International Exhibition in 1929.
- Noguchi Table – considered by the designer as his only successful piece of furniture design
- Wishbone Chair – which has been in continuous production since the 1950s
- Egg Chair – used by Stanley Kubrick’s astronauts in 2001: A Space Odyssey
For authentic pieces the best advice is to look for evidence of the country of manufacture eg Denmark, Japan, Italy, Yugoslavia, or America. If you can’t find a stamp or label look for evidence where a label or tag may have been. There may be a slight colour variation in the timber here so don’t discount it as fake.
Quality construction is another good identifier of mid-century modern furniture. The furniture was built to last and often used either classic craftsman skills or industrial methods for construction.
As you explore the Empire Revival space, you will find many vintage Mid-Century Modern pieces that are wonderful examples of this design style.
Antique Furniture, Modern Furniture and Mid-Century Furniture at Brisbane’s Empire Revival
Empire Revival started its days as Paddington Antiques and fine antique furniture is in our blood. We have now added mid-century and modern furniture to our collection so you can find a piece to suit your style.
At Empire Revival, we focus on stocking a range of options to suit many styles, designs, and tastes. It’s a wonderful opportunity to get adventurous with your creativity and mix and match pieces to create a vision that is uniquely yours.
Come in and browse over 1,000m² of unique items including a wide selection of quality antique, modern, vintage and mid-century furniture. We have everything from beds, tables, chairs, dining suites, cabinets, and much more.
We also have a range of outdoor furniture, accessories, and cleaning and maintenance products to ensure your investment piece stays in great shape.
Our merchants are always changing their collections to ensure there is something new to entice every time you visit us.