Acquiring antiques can be a joy, whether you are pursuing a specific period style or simply enhancing your home with distinctive pieces. But decorating with antiques has its drawbacks - an item you have in mind might be astronomical in value or in poor condition. If your priority is the desired look rather than owning something that's been around for more than a century, then reproduction antique furniture is an alternative.
Numerous companies sell reproductions as well as antiques. Tomlinson's (www.antique-furniture.co.uk) claims to have the largest antiques showroom in Britain. Reproduction pieces include a Queen Anne dresser and rack (#2,661/$38,055), which is described as being a prime example of the early 18th-century dressers made along the Welsh border. Notable desks include the Carlton House desk, which is in a blond tone with narrow legs and has multiple drawers and compartments (#5,118).
Another antique/repro hybrid business is MBW (www.mbwfurniture.com), based in Atlanta, Georgia, in the US. It has a large collection of Louis XIV reproductions as well as antiques in art-deco, art-nouveau and other styles. The Boulle inlaid ebony finish table (US$2,499) has elaborate inlay patterns in the style of French cabinetmaker Andre-Charles Boulle, who created a technique of veneering with marquetry of tortoiseshell and pewter.
Dian Furniture (www.dianfurniture.com) specialises in antique reproductions in American, English and French styles, including Chippendale, Sheraton, Regency, Georgian and Victorian. The Galle console table (below; US$650) in solid mahogany uses carved filigree botanical motifs of French art-nouveau designer Emile Galle. A Victorian-style bedroom suite includes a queen-size four-poster bed, nightstand, dresser and chest for US$7,250. Unfinished furniture is also available to be stained and upholstered as you please.
For those seeking a more rustic quality, Appalachian Woods (www.appalachianwoods.com), in the Shenandoah Valley in Virginia, uses recycled wood, mostly reclaimed from buildings dating from the beginning of the 20th century or earlier, to create pieces with a classic rural look. Hand-built farm-style tables are available in chestnut (prices vary according to size) and pine (US$2,875 with square Shaker legs, US$3,075 with turned legs).
Other makers reproduce antiques in the styles of India, China, Indonesia and elsewhere. One example is Tribal Monsoon (www.tribalmonsoon.com), whose products represent the Indian subcontinent. The Mughal accent chair (US$625) is made of rosewood carved with intricate patterns on the back and the front apron, with upholstery in raw silk. The Punjab ottoman (far left; US$675), also in rosewood, is square with a carved border pattern and silk upholstery.
All companies mentioned ship to Hong Kong.