Flying Dutchman Antiques
FD Antiques - (The Antique Warehouse, Unit 3B, Yorkhill Quay Estate, Glasgow G3 8QE) is a great place for furniture shopping - particularly if you are looking for something a bit different at a reasonable price. Hannie van Riel, the owner, has been in the antiques business since 1979 and previously owned a shop in the fantastic Harbourfront , where you can find Toronto's wonderful Antique Market, until moving to Glasgow in 1993.
Hannie's enthusiasm for her work is very apparent and she takes immense pride in acquiring unique pieces: "handpicked in Belgium, Holland and France". She aims to ensure that old pieces are carefully restored to a very high quality so that they are "ready to go home". Her stock is varied and includes some exquisite French antique furniture but even the most intricately carved pieces are functional as well as ornamental. There are also some fine examples of very simple, Dutch farmhouse furniture in solid oak - very affordable and easy to live with. Just the thing for convivial family meals - and looks as though it would last forever. You can even buy some lovely dishes to show it off and a striking Yvonne Dunn oil painting to place in the background.
Hannie is rightly proud of her business and Jim and I enjoyed poring over her stock, which reflects her concern for value and quality. We felt privileged to get a tour behind the scenes, where there is a very well organised workshop and large store of old, dark and damaged items - just crying out to be transformed. What a marked contrast between these pieces and the finely polished and finished articles in the showroom.
I particularly liked a beautiful Louis XV1 walnut bedroom suite, circa 1900 - at the amazing price of £1650. Also an Art Deco chest of drawers from the 30's - for an exceptional £235. Next time I am furniture shopping I'll be looking for something unique; with a bit of history. Especially when it is restored to the point depicting the standard Hannie has set: " as near perfect as an old piece can be".
You can have a look at Hannie's stock online at: http://www.fdantiques.com/allstock.asp
Wonderful site. Interesting, well constructed, easy to use and great photography.
Well done, will visit here often and will come for a look next time I'm in the area. 11 out of 10 !!!
--Kathy Gilmour ( kathy_g21_2000 at hotmail dot com ) from Scotland on 22.2.2003; 2:20:11 Uhr