The Great Restoration – upcycling vintage furniture

oliver Furniture, General, Recycling / upcycling, Vintage

There are few things I find more satisfying than finding old, unloved furniture and giving it a new lease of life. Better still, it means I own a totally unique piece.

Finding used, stylish furniture and lovingly restoring is very rewarding but it can also be hard work and to be honest be at the right place at the right time counts for a lot ! Luckily, there are some brilliant new designers who specialise in rejuvenating classic furniture that inspire me.

I just love Deryn Relph’s work. Her use of colours, textiles and patterns to reinvent discarded furniture and fittings is really creative. The sustainable ethos that underpins her design and use of factory surplus stock makes her work even more impressive. Deryn talks about being inspired by ‘retro imagery’, nostalgia and childhood memories’. Just take a look at her marvellously-titled ‘Retro Rainbow Rejuvenation’ collection, and its psychedelic Grandma’s-house feel, and I think you’ll know exactly what she means.

Heidi Awford created The Baobab Tree in 2007 to produce luxury, eco-friendly home furnishings inspired by vintage materials. Using these materials, traditional furniture is turned into one off masterpieces with the fabrics really adding a new dimension to classic pieces.

British designer Zoe Murphy is also attracting a lot of attention with her restored and recycled furniture. Inspired by her hometown of Margate, the prints adorning these imaginative restorations promote ‘loving what belongs to you’. Zoe uses classic 1950’s pieces and colourful styles, as well as everything from wood veneers to old wedding dresses, to create ethical and upbeat furniture.

I think these inspirational designers show exactly what can be done with a bit of imagination and creativity. Why not try it yourself next time you think you need a new piece of furniture? You might even have a masterpiece waiting to happen in your home.