Values have changed dramatically over the past few decades. The world's populations have increased hugely and the number of wealthy individuals in the market for the best objects has increased with them, whilst the stock of antiques, by its very nature, can only remain static or decrease as objects are lost to accidents or deliberate acts of destruction.
This extremely rare George I blue and gold japanned bureau bookcase, made circa 1715, is 110 cm wide, 66.25 cm deep and 2,52.50 cm tall.
A blue background is usually associated with French japanning but this sumptuous piece was made in England.
Furniture designed to fit within the loftier rooms that were typical of gracious living in bygone eras is out of place in the more cramped dwelling spaces that are popular today and so smaller items of furniture develop an ever-greater value.
This George I walnut armchair is 87cm tall with the seat at 46cm high, is 74cm wide and 48.5cm deep. As a singleton, such a chair would have been largely ignored just a decade or two ago, in favour of pairs or sets of chairs but, today, single antique chairs are very popular with those who live alone or who want a special piece of furniture to grace a small space.
Over the decades, we have seen many fakes, so well made as to fool even the 'experts' of the Fine Art world, sold as genuine antiques. The individuals who purchase one of these 'strops' will be as happy as the owners of the genuine articles, as long as they never discover that their prized possession is a fake. In some ways this is a shocking thought but, then again, a piece so beautiful that even experts are convinced of its integrity perhaps deserves to have a high value placed upon it - the value of anything may be described as that which the seller and buyer agree is acceptable.
The furniture-makers whose works will always be worth acquiring and whose designs have most been copied, innocently as well as in an attempt to create fake 'originals', are worth studying if you are genuinely interested in the subject. All of the following were masters of their craft, and the list is by no means exhaustive but includes some of the greatest creators of important furniture in the 17th and 18th centuries:
Robert Adam; Mary Bell; Samuel Bennett; Sir William Chambers; John Channon; Thomas Chippendale; Coxhead and Worcester; Heppelwhite; William Kent; Henry Kettle; Daniel Marrot; Vanburgh;