Antique Lovers’ Cool And Collected Treasure Troves

Antique Lovers’ Cool And Collected Treasure Troves

Ahead of the AAADA Antiques Fair Melbourne on May 3 to 6, we explore the lifelong love and passion of two antique collectors and provide tips to mix and match the old with the new with confidence.

Two antique collectors who love the trend of mixing vintage and antiques with ultra-modern share their passion.

You could say antiques are in publisher Robyn Foyster’s DNA. She grew up surrounded by them; her aunt was an antique dealer and she visited galleries with her from a young age. “My favourite period is Victorian. I have a fabulous mahogany chest of drawers that has travelled the world with me. So many fond memories are attached to it! What I love about antiques is that each piece tells a story. And when you buy a particular antique, it becomes part of your own story—the connection becomes deep and personal. “

Cool & Collected AAADA Antiques Fair Melbourne

Cool & Collected – Pic credit: Behruz Studios

Robyn started collecting globes when she was a teen and says it’s fascinating looking at them now to see how much the world has changed. “I have always been an avid collector. When I travel, I head out to the antique and flea markets to look for interesting pieces. For me, it’s on a par with visiting a museum. When I was in Vietnam over 30 years ago I bought some wonderful jade and silver jewellery that I still wear today.” Robyn also has a knack for finding unknown artists who later become famous. Her taste is eclectic and she loves mixing various styles in her own home. “I love that the antiques are always a talking point; and I am lucky that I have modern and antique pieces that mesh perfectly together. “

Robyn Foyster's antique table with modern white leather chairs and three white porcelain vases

Robyn Foyster’s antique table with modern white leather chairs set off by three modern white porcelain vases

Writer Catherine Marshall’s interest in art and antiques also started at a young age. “My father’s cousin was married to a French Orientalist who asked him to look after his paintings during the war. He never returned, and his art hung from one end of our apartment to the other, a blaze of colours, sensual scenes from the Kasbah and intriguing landscapes. As a child, I found them fascinating and would often ask my father to tell me the story behind each work. When I got a bit older, I trawled antique shops, always looking for something special that would speak to me of the past and far- away lands. I once bought an antique Spanish travelling trunk that still sits in a corner of my modern living room. Every time I look at it, I am reminded of a by-gone era when travelling was a luxurious experience. I love the charm and nostalgia of antiques; they bring beauty into your life, a sense of history and continuity. And I love the thrill of the chase. Finding that special piece that makes your heart sing!

I like mixing antiques with modern furniture; I find it adds depth and texture to a room. It’s a wonderful way to add the unexpected to a room. I have an ornate 16th-century Italian mirror over my very modern fireplace. It looks terrific! “

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Catherine takes pride blending the old with the new to perfect the mixed styles seamlessly

Antique dealers say that a younger crowd is now seeing the benefits of buying antiques.  They view antiques differently nowadays, not as dusty or fussy items, but rather something that brings value and character . Retail furniture has become more homogenised and with antiques you can find unique pieces that really showcases your individuality and celebrates your approach to life.

Mix & Match with confidence

  1. Follow the 80/20 percent rule. The room has to be either predominantly traditional or modern so work with that ratio.
  2. Tie unlikely items together, following a theme (it could be colour, size, and texture).
  3. Mix antique artwork with modern sofa; antique lamps and modern side tables.
  4. Vintage pillowcase with modern linen.
  5. Have at least one unexpected piece that gives focus to the room.

Where to go to buy antiques 

AAADA Antiques Fair Melbourne is on May 3 to 6th at the Melbourne showgrounds. Price is $20 per ticket but there’s an early bird special till April 14th of 2 for $20 if you go to their website aaada.org.au and buy now.

Pic credit: The hero shot of antique jewellery is from the Sydney store, Anne Schofield’s Antique Gallery.