Antiques for Everyone sees middle market return

Buyers from Taiwan, Russia and Japan helped make this weekend’s Antiques for Everyone one of the best in years, encouraged by the return of the ‘middle market’.

Thirty years after the fair first opened its doors, the event at the NEC from April 9-12, saw antiques and fine art lovers from across the globe attend the Birmingham event.

Arts & Crafts settle at Antiques for Everyone
Jo Bentley on a Scottish Arts & Crafts settle with Liberty fabric sold at Antiques for Everyone

Dealers reported confidence returning strongly with sales across at every level.

David March of David and Sally March, porcelain specialists from Bristol who have shown at the NEC for more than 25 years, said: “The middle market has returned.”

A special collection of Minton pâte-surpâte vases by Marc-Louis Solon (1835-1913) proved an irresistible attraction to a Taiwanese collector visiting on the opening day. The collection, belonging to specialist ceramics dealer Scottow Antiques from Kent, was sold for a figure in excess of £85,000.

Antique and decorative furniture also proved to be in demand. Jeroen Markies from Forest Row was delighted with sales of Art Deco furniture, pictures, mirrors, bronzes and accessories. The photo shows Jo Bentley from Buxton dealer Steve Bentley Decorative Arts and Lighting, on a Scottish Arts & Crafts settle with Liberty’s fabric, which sold for £1,150.

Many other exhibitors enjoyed sales to overseas buyers, notably ceramics specialists Julian Eade Antiques from West Sussex, Catherine Hunt from Cheltenham, and Asian art specialists Stagshead Antiques from Dorset, who said it was their most successful visit to the NEC in a decade.

Fair director, Mary Claire Boyd, said: ‘The fair enjoyed a resurgence in business as middle-market sales showed every sign of gathering pace. Our specialist dealers commented that they were pleased to sell to many new clients who came from far and wide. The outlook for the rest of the year looks very positive.’

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