As copycat iconic furniture becomes illegal, how to buy authentic retro (without the price tag) –

“People are bored by contemporary furniture, where they all end up owning the same thing,” says Zhang Ferron. “Ikea is convenient and fairly priced, but people are looking for craftsmanship, quirky pieces and longevity, regardless of their budget – although, even the wealthy like a bargain.”

As well as the design pedigree of these items, they have an added charm from the fact that they have been cared for and preserved by a previous generation.

Understated, well-made, practical furniture from brands such as G Plan, Ercol and Parker Knoll can create a statement in any room – and become a family heirloom worthy of being passed on to another generation.


This is partly why there has been a rise in interest for pieces of local history, Zhang Ferron adds. “Mid-century furniture from the Fifties, Sixties and Seventies is very popular from Scandinavia, Italy and France – but increasingly buyers are looking for British-made products.”

And if these price tags are still too high? It’s possible to pick up furniture for free via local Freecycle schemes, and charities including the British Heart Foundation will collect unwanted furniture to sell in their shops or eBay pages.

Pull up a chair and get started.


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