18 May 2017

Investment Pieces for the Home

I have finally been able to make some space in my place! Thus last week, the storage company brought all my belongings (furniture, kitchenware, electricals, books, tools, clothes and shoes) that had been locked away in storage for over seven years (you read this right, 7 years!) after I moved from the UK to Corsica. At that point, it was a matter for me of rediscovering what was hidden in those boxes because I could not exactly remember what I owned... Talk about the little girl in the treasure trove moment! Yet this made me realise how important it is to keep belongings to a minimum and focus on quality rather than the flat-pack self-assembly combo that is no statement for durability, especially after just one house move.

Flora Pendants by Rothschild & Bickers

Nip clutter in the bud and don't let it build up and control you. In my case, I have never been keen on ornaments but was still surprised to find out I still own way too many of those; they end up being begrudgingly cumbersome as space occupiers and dust collectors - not a good prospect when you live in an already-cluttered house and in the path of the dusty, desert-borne sirocco winds!

A cluster of Flora Pendants in Jade at Motel One München-Sendlinger Tor

I decided years ago that life is too short to be cumbersome and too precious to be cheap. Sometimes you need to carefully splurge on a select few investment pieces that will accompany you down the journey of life and beyond, passed down to the next generation. Quality pieces that do not necessarily shout out hefty price tag, antique heirlooms and vintage memorabilia but that spell out design, elegance, timelessness per se, and a certain uniqueness, in that 'upper' high street parable.

Twinkle, twinkle little light...

First for the cheerful and edible stuff (7 years later, I betcha!), I have happily found a box of designer coffee, upmarket English tea, and fancy sugar cubes neatly packed up. Those will come in handy, and needless to say sprinkle tea-time with a generous spoonful of English nostalgia.

Standing Pendants by Rothschild & Bickers

I'm still not done with my treasure finds, yet I have unwrapped some of what I consider my investment pieces (two of which were cheap as in even a cash-stranded student could afford those!):
  • a Mexican bedframe in repurposed vintage pine and custom-painted (bought from John Lewis before the retail store started losing its edge to the mainstream)
  • a pair of reproduction cast-iron book-ends (cast in original Victorian moulds, and purchased in Ironbridge, Shropshire, a good 20 years ago)
  • a French rococo gilded crystal chandelier, circa 1910 (a bit of a fancy purchase in relation to my budget at the time, from a specialist antiques shop on the Hale end of Altrincham, Cheshire) - yeah the posh end of town...
  • an original copy of Salome by Oscar Wilde, which I randomly came across in some charity shop in Didsbury Village, Manchester (cost me a fiver and at the time was already worth at least £80).

Steel Standing Pendants

Not all my finds were happy finds. I cringed at some of the clothing I had forgotten about (which will be heading the charity shop way soon enough!). I despaired about knick-knacks (presents from friends and family), books (Marketing for Dummies and Photoshop for Beginners type of books that shall not grace any shelves and thus remain tightly packed in boxes until disposed of via eBay).

Opulent Optic Pendants

Source: If you are seeking bespoke investment pieces rooted in European manufacturing, traditional handblown glass craftsmanship, and period-inspired pieces revisited through a resolutely clean and modern twist, Rothschild & Bickers is your port of call. The small English company has made it its speciality to turn the mod-con of lighting into an object of desire that will sit at home in antiques-furnished abodes, stately homes, modern environments... and retail outlets alike. Rothschild & Bickers lights will stand the test of time and fads and still spell out a statement steeped in history with a forward-thinking standpoint. No shadow of a doubt about this. My favourite pieces include the (1) Flora Pendants range, retailing at £370 (small) and £440 (large), and (4) the Standing Pendants range, retailing at £520. (2-3) The Flora range blossoms at Motel One München-Sendlinger Tor, Munich, Germany. (5) Bespoke Steel Standing Pendants, photography via Rothschild & Bickers' Instagram account. (6) The Opulent Optic range retails at £370. (7) The Vintage Light (see below picture, to the right) is a styled reinvention of the fringed mid-century affair found in your nan's sitting room and the jumble shop down the road... Attention please! No tired mustard velvet and no dusty chintz here: colours are sharp, the glass dome may be wiped clean with a damp sponge, and the light comes with a wispy fringe of your choice! Make mine the Satinwood Gold. The Vintage Light retails at £440. (8) Talk about customising that investment piece: over 90 flex types available! Photography via Rothschild & Bickers' Instagram account.

A fringe to frame that face
Flexes of your choosing

Investment Pieces for the Home is to become a regular Mirabelle feature. We'll review objects of desire that are set to last the distance and become heirloom pieces in their own right. God forbid, those items you might even profit from, should times get dire and your household require an instant cash injection. Further inspiration from Mirabelle's Pinterest board, Interior Design Delight.

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