Auctions are a great way to furnish your home with fine furniture

They don’t make ’em like they used to! That’s particularly true of fine furniture. Auctions are a good way to find quality pieces of furniture at prices far below current retail… and the pieces have a story to tell.


I’m reluctant to share these secrets with you… but I am a giver, so here it goes…

This sideboard is from a current auction at R.H. Lee which is an auction house in South Carolina. It’s a Gill & Reigate carved crotch mahogany sideboard that features a serpentine front. The sideboard has classic spade feet, a wine cellar with galvanized interior, and a divided silver drawer. As of this posting (a day before the auction closes) the high bid was $35.


I particularly like this inlaid 2 part curio cabinet with glass shelves. It has a neoclassical inlay design and I like the curves in the panes of glass on the cabinet. It would be nice to display a china collection in a dining room, in a hallway, or in a living room. It’s small proportions make it ideal to fit in with existing furniture.


The fabric on these chairs might be “too much” for some folks but I think in the right room, they could be a lot of fun. Of course, the bones of the chairs are great and could easily be recovered. With online auctions, you never know how things smell before you buy. This auction house allows for in-person previews as many auction houses do. However, it’s an extra trip and often you might not have the time to make the trip. These are Charles Stewart Queen Anne style wingback arm chairs with claw feet. Currently the high bid on these chairs is $25 each or $50 for the pair. Of course, the bids will go up as the auction closes, but it’s still pretty low considering there is less than 24 hours before the auction closes.

punch bowl

Finally there is this large nickel silver punch bowl with 12 cups, ladle and footed tray. This could be a lot of fun to use with a party. You could also use the pieces separately. I’m currently using a similar punch bowl as a planter centerpiece on our dining room table. With a poinsettia or two, some trailing ivy or pothos and a little Spanish moss, you could have a great centerpiece. The high bid on this set is just $35 right now.

Of course the trick with online auctions is getting the furniture back to your home. I think it’s always best for these types of things to only shop within driving distance. It’s too expensive to ship items that aren’t museum quality. I’ve shopped a R.H. Lee for years because it’s close to us and the prices are great. Look in your area for an auction house and see what treasures you can uncover!

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