Childhood nostalgia and happy memories will likely have a dining room or kitchen table at their centre; the heartbeat of family celebrations and friendly conversation. And whether it is a meal shared, dipping a rusk in a mug of coffee or a cup of tea (which solves all the world’s problems), a vintage or antique table is that quintessential piece of furniture that makes every room a better place.
Most interior designers are of the persuasion that a space is not a finished space without a table. And when it comes to vintage or antique tables, there are so many versions that fit the brief.
We’ve already dedicated an entire blog to mixing and matching modern and antique tables and chairs. But that is just for starters as there is an entire world of antique tables ready to provide the wow factor in any space or setting.
Because antique and vintage tables – of all shapes and sizes – cost much the same or less than new equivalent ones and also increase in value, they become a smart, sustainable and more interesting choice.
#1 Refectory tables
An antique refectory table is a large, long and robust table that has seating for many. They are a simple way to create beauty and presence in a room. You can go formal or casual, depending on the wood finish and the chairs or benches you decide to partner with them. A farmhouse aesthetic is ideal for a kitchen or outdoor patio or you can amp up the tradition in the dining room with sumptuously upholstered chairs. (Now all you need to do is sign up for that tablescaping masterclass).
#2 Drum tables
We almost feel like asking for a drum roll, as antique drum tables are ever worthy of decor applause and attention. Introduced in the late 18th century, a drum table was a circular table with a central support and was often fitted with drawers. They are versatile enough to serve many purposes – as functional or accent pieces – in any space; as an end table in a lounge (adding interest to straight-lined sofas), as a focal point in an entrance hall or as a nightstand/pedestal table in the bedroom.
#3 Library tables
Vintage library or antique reading tables are a rare and special find. Designed for writing and studying, they are the standard desk height and are generally rectangular in shape. Manufactured in a variety of solid wood options, they add instant glamour and a touch of historical luxury. They also do double duty as desks, consoles or work surfaces in any room.
#4 Console tables
Console tables are always on trend and are a home essential when it comes to a multi-tasking piece of furniture. Beloved by the 17th century French and Italian aristocracy as purely decorative items of furniture, they are now indispensable and loved as beautiful and functional pieces.
Antique console tables – gilded, marble, wooden, glass or wrought iron – come with just the right amount of ornate decorative detailing to become the hero accent decor piece against any wall (breaking up a long narrow hallway for visual interest), in any niche or in any setting. You can really have some eclectic fun placing them all over your house. They make the prettiest dressing tables in smaller rooms (just add a mirror), cocktail tables (gin and tonic anyone?), or accent tables behind a sofa.
#5 Occasional tables
Every home needs a vintage or antique occasional table dotted here and there as a side table, coffee table or pedestal table. Occasional tables are the little statement pieces that transform a space by creating unique visual interest. This is where you can go to town (or to The Crown Collection) and really mix it up with shapes, style and materials.
If you are asking yourself, “Why haven’t I added one of these antique tables to my home?”, the simple answer is you probably haven’t yet popped into The Crown Collection – South Africa’s largest emporium of vintage, antique and French furniture.