A few weeks ago, we moved from the family home that my Mum had lived in for the last eight years and put down roots in a new house. It was sad to say goodbye to the place where we celebrated so many moments together – birthdays, graduations, homecomings – but it’s so exciting to be in a totally fresh space with so much potential. The house that we (well, more accurately my Mum but who’s checking) have moved into is already polished and finished, but there’s some work to be done to make it truly into a home that reflects her unique style and design personality. She’s going step by step (even if she really wants everything to be done yesterday already!) and it’s amazing to see everything come together.
When this mid century rosewood sideboard from the amazing Hayloft Design arrived, it felt like it had been built especially for the space. We asked Rick, the founder and chief restorer at Hayloft Design about the piece and he told us that it was made by London cabinetmaker Archie Shine around 1968-71 and designed by Robert Heritage, a leading British designer who designed furniture for the QE2 luxury Liner in the 1950s.
The sideboard was sold through Heals, Tottenham Court Road. Heals passionately believed in good design, working closely with Gordon Russell as well as Government departments concerned with the manufacture and export of goods to promote new furniture that was of its time rather than taking influence from the past.
The prices for this furniture were high in comparison to wages at the time, which would have cost about £150 against an average weekly wage of approximately £30. Exotic timber including rosewood and laburnum had begun to be used more during the mid century period, replacing the traditional and dark stained brown walnut and oak. Some believed rosewood to be too wild for the British taste, with its strong colour and flamboyant figure. Thank goodness they didn’t listen to them, otherwise we wouldn’t have beauties like this with us today! You can read our full feature on Rick and Lindsay of Hayloft Mid Century Design here.
We’ll share some more detailed shots of the whole house soon we promise, but for now we’ve just had some fun playing around with styling this stunning sideboard three different ways. So let us know, which look do you like best?
#1 Pretty Vintage Charm
In this look we’ve given this strong, masculine piece a pretty vintage edge. As always, we’re drawn to gold and we’ve styled using different hues – with the bright, shiny finish of the vintage decorative objects on the tray contrasting with the darker, burnished patina of the other pieces. The flowers in the centre soften everything up and and tie in loosely with the pale pink of the ballerina and the edging on the lampshade. It’s a sweet and pretty look.
#2 Shades of White
The clean, plain white of the animal head statues contrasts perfectly with the rich and deeply textured wood of the sideboard. Using white as the primary styling colour makes the richness of the wood really pop and we’ve used different textures of white to avoid looking clinical – white feathers, white ceramics and the sheen of the white painting. This simple look really lets the sideboard speak for itself and we love it!
#3 Plants and Art
Inspired by the current styling competition being hosted by interiors community AtMine and blogging network Urban Jungle Bloggers we wanted to create a style that incorporated our love of expressive art with the flash of life that plants bring to a space. The deep jade and teal vintage mid century vases feel appropriate to the era of the sideboard and this ties in with the natural lush green of the foliage.
If you want to get involved with the styling competition you can upload your photos to AtMine and Instagram using the hashtag #StyleAtMine and #urbanjunglebloggers and tagging @atmine and @mydeernl in the photo description.
So, how would you style your mid century sideboard?
We’d love to hear from you, so let us know which look you prefer and if you’ve styled your own sideboards differently.