Wednesday, October 01, 2008

Antiques by Design

Above: Guy Chevenix-Trench (photo: Paul Raeside/BBC Homes & Antiques)

Guy Chevenix-Trench, Antiques by Design Essex
Article from Antiques Trade Gazette, 4th October 2008
by Joan Porter

When Guy Chevenix-Trench looks at a pile of rusting junk it is with a designer's inventive and eco-savvy eye. Sourced from fairs, auctions, reclamation yards, skips, scrapyards and on walks in the Essex countryside where he lives, every old farm implement, rusted mirror and crumbling bedstead will have its use.

Guy transforms these into lamps, tables and mirrors, which he sells through his company Antiques by Design and at fairs, including his first visit to this year's Salvo Fair, to which he will return in 2009. Guy's range of sport-themed lamps are a particular hit, kickstarted when he used vintage bowling balls as lamp bases for a hotel in Ireland.

"I could do cricket balls as well, and if I could do that I could do fishing rods and then cricket bats and then polo sticks," said Guy. "Standard lamps created from fishing rods with the old reels attached are now Antiques by Design best seller. Golf club lamps were very tricky, until, after about a year, I had the idea of putting the clubs in a bag."

A former North Sea diver, he set up welding operations in the oilfields, a skill which he uses today. From diving Guy became a windsurfer instructor and was made redundant in 2003 his love affair with antiques took over and he began selling chandeliers and furniture.

"I just couldn't make money at it; there were so many other people doing it. Three years ago I made a lamp from a busted but beautiful balustrade. I made up a few, took them to an interiors fair and that was it."

And Guy's favourite piece? His 18th century hand-held harrow fashioned into a chandelier.

Antiques by Design

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