The wonderful world of wicker (and rattan)

Don’t dismiss wicker as the stuff of your grandmother’s conservatory.

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This collection of assorted decorative wicker items and baskets has an estimate of £40-60 at Special Auction Services on June 6 during its Antiques & Collectables Auction.

For one thing, grandma chic and cottage core are in, which means that wicker are desirable once more.

Wicker is an ancient technique dating back as far as 5000 years. It was popularised in the 19th century when it was used outside as well as inside. Weather resistant and versatile it retained its popularity.

As well as chairs and baskets, wicker is a material in many home objects. It is usually presented as a practical, summery, indoor-outdoor material, but can also offer a bit of texture and depth. Designers recommend looking for diverse shapes and styles, sticking to statement pieces, and looking out for ways to help it add colour to an interior.

Note that rattan, a term often used interchangeably with wicker, is a material while ‘wicker’ indicates a style of weave. Wicker furniture can also be made with willow, reed and bamboo, or, more recently, synthetic fibres.

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Gustave Serrurier Bovy (1858-1910) designed these wicker-seated chairs and armchairs in 1897. Featuring oak and cane wickered seats, they are included in Bonhams’ 20th & 21st Century Design sales on June 5 with an estimate of €2000-3000.

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This Clarice Cliff Bizarre Gayday pattern biscuit barrel and cover, c.1935, comes with a green wicker handle. It is on offer at Bamfords’ sale of June 13-16 with an estimate of £100-150.

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This two-seat bamboo wicker conservatory sofa goes under the hammer at David Duggleby in North Yorkshire with an estimate of £50-80. It is part of its Furnishings Sale on June 3.

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Anderson & Garland of Newcastle offers this retro bamboo and rattan hanging egg easy lounge chair in its Modern Art & Design Auction on May 31. It has an estimate of £40-60.


Tags: Furniture
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