3 December 2009

Grays December Issue

Perfect Christmas Gifts from Grays

It’s time to plunge straight into the festive season and with such an extensive list of people to buy for and presents to find, Grays offers a fantastic opportunity to find that unique Christmas gift. Let us help you start your search with some great gift ideas.
For Her

For something classic and traditional, jewellery is a fantastic place to start. From vintage costume jewellery to diamond earrings and necklace sets, Grays dealers offer a large range to suit any taste and budget.

Mexican silver bracelet is by Sigi Pineda, from Unicorn in Grays Mews.
18ct Gold and Emerald Brooch & Earring Suite, from Robin Haydock & Vince Martin.

A jewellery box is the perfect accompaniment to any jewellery purchase but is also a great gift on its own.

19th Century Mosaic Mother of Pearl Jewellery Box, from ZMS Antiques
Hallmark Antiques, Evonne Antiques and Raysil Antiques also offer beautiful silver art deco jewellery boxes as well as other beautiful collectables, perfect for Christmas gifts.

1930s Enamelled Silver Dressing Table Set, from Evonne Antiques.
Art Deco Green, White, & Black Enamelled Clock, from Raysil Antiques.

1920s Maharaja Indian Silver Coffee Pot, Cream Jug, and Sugar Bowl, from Joseph Cohen.
For Him

Shabbir Solanki Antiques have a vast range of fountain pens, vintage lighters and many more fine art objects perfect for Christmas gifts. Their stock includes a multitude of pens from the 1920’s and 1930’s, like this beautiful Sheaffers oversize balance pen and pencil set.

1930s Sheaffers Pen & Pencil Set, from Shabbir Solanki

Grays also has a wonderful selection of inkwells that will provoke intrigue and splendor in any office.

Indian Silver Double Inkwell with Cobra, from Joseph Cohen

Cufflinks at Grays are anything but standard with many dealers stocking a large range. This 1950s pair of heavy Alfred Dunhill 18ct gold and lapis lazuli cufflinks are a perfect Christmas treat and are available from Nigel Norman.

Nigel Norman has a stunning selection of Gentleman's cufflinks.

Decanters and barware make a great present that can be used and treasured for a lifetime. Visit Jack Podlewski, Gorringe Antiques, ZMS Antiques for some stunning examples.

Silver Mounted Locking Decanter, from Jack Podlewski
With numerous watch dealers at Grays, each an expert in their field, it is easy to find something to suit!
Rolex Oyster Watch from Timespec

For Christmas gifts for smaller budgets make sure to visit our array of showcases in Grays Mews. From stunning costume jewellery, vintage homeware, and treen, to nautical memorabilia, clarice cliff ceramics and art nouveau pieces Grays showcases house a plethora of perfect presents!

Vintage Smoked Glass Candlesticks, from Aid A Sale. Showcase FS3

Art Deco Orient Line Pin Tray, from Alan Crisp. Showcase V11

Don't forget Grays is now open every Saturday from 11am - 5pm so spend an afternoon away from the high street rush at Grays!

Gift Certificates
Grays gift certificates make a great present and let the recipient choose exactly what they want! Grays gift certificates are valid for one year and can be used in any shop within Grays. They can be bought in denominations of £10, £20, or £50.

Grays Christmas Closing and Re-Opening Times

Grays will be open right up until the 24th December 2009! We will then close for Christmas and will re-open on 4th January 2010.

5 November 2009

Grays November Issue

Grays Christmas Shopping Party
3rd December 2009

To kick off the Christmas season, Grays is once again hosting its ever popular Late Night Shopping Party. Avoid the high-street madness and join us after work for a glass of bubbly and some festive entertainment. Explore one of London’s largest antique treasure troves and return home with fabulous gifts you know your family and friends will love for years to come.

Grays’ Late Night Christmas Shopping Party is sure to make a very enjoyable and alternative Christmas shopping experience. It is the only opportunity of the year to shop after hours in this genteel antiques centre and, if that is not enough, Grays will be open right up until Christmas Eve!

For your complimentary invitation please call 020 7629 7034 or email info@graysantiques.com.

Dealer Highlight: Himiko

Nestled amongst the showcases in the Mews is dealer Himiko, offering an eclectic yet affordable range of Japanese and Chinese antiques. Trading at Grays for almost a year but trading independently for eight, she visits Japan regularly to stock up her showcase.

From intricate and elegant Kimono’s to beautiful carved authentic netsukes, she showcases a wide range of traditional Oriental antiques. Accompanying these Himiko offers some smaller items including silver charms, brooches and unusual picture frames perfect for that unique Christmas gift.

Visit her stand A23-B17 downstairs in the basement at 1-7 Davies Mews.

Antique of the Month: Watches and Timepieces

While some are auspicious enough to have a precious watch or timepiece passed down to them by a previous generation, others look for a vintage or antique watch as a way to articulate their individuality and find something distinctive that you won’t see anywhere else.

Contemporary Gents Rolex Submariner Watch, POA, from JUS Watches

After a wedding band, watches are probably one of the most significant pieces of jewellery a man can own. That’s why it is essential to find a watch or timepiece that is personal to you, will hold its value over time and maybe even become an heirloom to be passed on in the future.

There are so many reasons why you should choose a vintage or antique watch or timepiece. Some people find the inner mechanics captivating; others enjoy the individuality of the piece, the beauty in the quality craftsmanship, or the history they may hold.

Early 19th Century Swiss Quarter Repeating Verge, Circa 1810, POA, from Pieces of Time.

At Grays we are fortunate to be able to boast a selection of highly experienced watch dealers who are all experts in their field.

Rolex Daytona Watch with Black Dial, POA, from Second Time Around.

Grays are also lucky to have full service maintenance and repair shop on site, Second Time Round. With over 20 years experience they have an expert watchmaker who specialises in all types of watches from Swiss wristwatches to complicated timepieces.

Gents 1940s Patek Philippe Wristwatch, £6500 from P. Crylin & Co.

1950s Classic Style Longines Gents Watch, POA, from Timespec.

Top Tips for Buying an Antique Watch or Timepiece

1. Do the basic research: Look at various makes and models of watches to be sure to find something that’s right for you in both style and budget.

2. Always buy from a reputable dealer. Look to see if they belong to a professional trade organisation. They should also be able to give you a certificate of authenticity from the watch manufacturer.

3. View your watch as an investment and look for brands that will hold their value over time. Rolex, Patek, Phillippe, Breitling and Omega are good quality, vintage brands. There are still others that are worth buying however so don’t feel you have to stick to these.

4. Ask for original documentation that came with the watch when it was first manufactured as this can add great value, especially if it includes original serial numbers.

5. Find a good watch repair service that can regularly service and, if worse comes to worst repair your watch. It is important to find a reputable place, as vintage and antique watches have been made with a different quality and type of craftsmanship to modern pieces. You should look to service your watch every two years.

1980s 18ct Gold Ladies Cartier Watch, £2000, from Regal Time

To browse Grays vast range of watches and timepieces please click here and search 'watch'.

Showcase of the Month: Aid A Sale Ltd.

Maggie St. Claire, an established showcase dealer at Grays has recently expanded her showcase collection. Trading as Aid A Sale, she stocks a diverse assortment of antiques and collectables. From stunning 1920s compacts, tobacco cases, pin cushions and original bakelite telephones to a large range of collectable treen pieces, Maggie has an excellent choice of objects that would make superb Christmas gifts!

Find Aid A Sale in Showcases FS3 & FS4 in Grays Mews.


Follow Grays on Twitter for up to the minute news and annoucements: @GraysAntiques

1 October 2009

Grays October Issue

Dealer Highlight: Bakhtar Art

Abdul Hadi Noori has recently relocated from stand C12 in Grays Mews to the more prominent stand M20-21, to house his large collection of ancient jewellery and artefacts. Bakhtar Art has a beautiful range of silver, ceramics and textiles as well as specialising in ancient beads and jewellery sourced in places such as Afghanistan, Kazakhstan and India.

Antique of the Month: Antique Dolls & Teddy Bears

As well as being host to a vast amount of jewellery, vintage fashion, Islamic art, antiques and collectables, Grays Mews is also home to Europe’s largest antique doll centre. The collaboration between Britain’s leading doll dealers, all sharing an incredible diversity of knowledge, has created an enviable collection of dolls and teddies, ranging from the early 1850s up to the 1950s.

Grays is one destination in Europe where one can still buy a vast range of wax, wooden, porcelain and papier maché dolls, as well as teddies, doll accessories, and dolls’ house furniture. Each dealer has a speciality that creates the diversity and range in dolls available.

Glenda O’ Connor stocks the most popular bisque headed French and German dolls, characters and babies. Sarah Sellers has an array of French and German dolls as well as a fine collection of antique teddy bears and animals including many Steiff examples. Marlis Tabizel has been travelling the globe collecting dolls since the 1970s while Sandra Fellner prides herself on having an esoteric collection of fine dolls for the advanced collector.

Dolls can make good investments because they are becoming increasingly scarce to find in good condition. Collecting and dealing in dolls has constantly evolved with the times, trends and tastes. While investment is definitely a strong factor to bear in mind when buying dolls, it is also important to find something you like. Personal taste should not be compromised as dolls and teddies, perhaps more than any other collectable evoke connections to childhood, making doll collecting very personal and nostalgic.

Sarah Sellers says ‘This is especially apparent with teddy bears, you can really see that a bear has been loved and cuddled, as his fur may be worn in a patch or his nose might have changed shape, I like to think about the history of the teddies and dolls and also about their future and collectors that are preserving them.’

Whether a customer is looking for a doll to reminisce of childhood, a classic angelic French doll with paper weight eyes to begin a collection, or a specialist character doll by Gebruder Heubach, at Grays every effort is made to find something to suit individual taste. If the doll dealers do not have what you are looking for, with their extensive knowledge and contacts they may be able to source it for you, meaning any specialist need can be catered for.

Showcase Spotlight: Paul Coe

We would like to welcome Paul Coe as a new showcase dealer to Grays Mews. With a variety of pieces to suit every pocket Paul has a fine collection of silver, porcelain, ceramic and glass items with a focus on enamels. Every piece has a certain delicate quality with beautiful attention to detail making them perfect collectables for the home. Find Paul Coe in Showcase V8 downstairs in Grays Mews.

Date for your Diaries

Thursday 3rd December 2009
Grays Christmas Shopping Party

Don't miss our annual late night Christmas shopping party with champagne, entertainment and of course beautiful Christmas gifts! For a complimentary invitation please contact us.

Grays is now on Twitter

Follow Grays on Twitter for up to the minute news and annoucements.

20 August 2009

September Issue

Grays Saturday Shopping
Every Saturday from 11am - 5pm

As of the 19th September Grays will be open every Saturday from 11am-5pm, giving you the opportunity to visit your favourite shops at the weekend.

The first Saturday will play host to a Grand Opening with iced tea and beautifully hand-made cakes by the suberb Patisserie Valerie, with the added luxury of spending an entire weekend afternoon browsing the many delights Grays has to offer. . .Don't miss this very special event!

For more information please email info@graysantiques.com or call 020 7629 7034 or visit the Grays website.

Dealer Highlight: K & Y Oriental Art

K&Y Oriental Art is a well established dealer in Grays Mews with an excellent reputation for dealing in fine quality Japanese and Chinese objects. With a beautiful array of Japanese and Chinese porcelain, bronzes, works of art, paintings and embroideries you will always find something eye catching. You can visit K&Y Oriental Art in Grays Mews Stand K24-K25.

Antique of the Month: Silverware

Silver has long been a valued material used for tableware and objects both functional and decorative. From elaborate Victorian dinner parties with their multitude of courses and tableware, to elegant and elaborate Art Nouveau centre pieces. Grays has a large variety of silver dealers each specialising in their own unique area of expertise.

Arnold Salvi and ZMS Antiques have been trading for 35 years and have a vast selection of beautiful tableware such as this Cornucopia shaped centre piece by William Hutton & Sons (below). They are well established dealers and are specialists in silver, quality silver plate and other decorative items. You can find them downstairs at Grays, Stands 124 & 125.

Left: Cornocopia Shaped Centre Piece by William Hutton & Sons, Sheffield 1907. From ZMS Antiques, Stand 124 & 125. Right: Art Nouveau Silver Posy Vase by Kate Harris for Hutton & Sons, London 1905. From Van Den Bosch.

Also downstairs at Grays are Carole and Jan Van den Bosch who specialise in 18th, 19th & early 20th Century silver from the Arts & Crafts, Jugendstil, Art Nouveau and Skonvirke movements with some particularly beautiful work by Kate Harris for Hutton & Sons as pictured above.

For silver collectables visit Evonne Antiques, Vine Antiques, and Hallmark Antiques all situated just near each other on the ground floor in Grays. Trading at Grays since the 1980s Evonne stocks various items such as silver photo frames, cigar boxes, and many small collectables such as perfume bottles and gentleman's accessories to name but a few.

Vine Antiques started trading in 1978 and specialise in 18th, 19th, & 20th Century silver with the mainstay of their stock being Georgian, Victorian and Edwardian collecables and novelty items such as caddy spoons, snuff boxes, and pin cushions.

Left: An Art Deco silver jewellery box with Scottish agate. From Evonne Antiques, Stand 351-353. Centre: A silver chair hatpin stand and pin cushion. Birmingham 1905 by C. Westwood & Son. From Vine Antiques, Stand 328. Right: Sterling Silver Victorian Picture Frame. Made in London 1894. From Hallmark Antiques.

If you are searching for splendid antique silver frames look no further that Hallmark Antiques. Ralph and Raymond are long establised dealers at Grays, having been here since the 1970s and have a beautiful collection of frames, small silver items and jewellery, with a focus on Georg Jensen pieces.

Jack Podlewski on the ground floor of Grays has a vast array of antique and contemporary silver, with some stunning claret jugs and wine related articles such as silver and crystal decanters. Pictured below is an elegant silver mounted tortoishell box, one of many beautiful silver pieces at Grays. Each of these dealers are the perfect people to help you find a very special gift.

Silver mounted tortoishell box. From Jack Podlewski, Stand 320.

Showcase Spotlight: So Nouveau

So Nouveau are new showcase dealers here at Grays. With a beautiful array of Art Deco, Art Nouveau, and Arts and Crafts decorative items from makers such as Liberty & Co and William Hutton, they are an welcome addition to the Mews. You can view their exquisite items in Showcase V14.

Showcase your Collectables

If you have a collection of antiques or collectables and are looking for somewhere to display and sell them, why not rent a showcase at Grays. For more information please contact Jenna on 020 7629 7034 or email info@graysantiques.com

7 August 2009

Grays August Issue

Grays Saturday Shopping Launch
19th September 2009

As of the 19th September Grays will be open every Saturday from 11am-5pm, giving you the opportunity to visit your favourite shops at the weekend. The first Saturday will play host to a Grand Opening with iced tea and beautifully hand-made cakes by the suberb Pattisserie Valerie, with the added luxury of spending an entire weekend afternoon browsing the many delights Grays has to offer. . Don't miss this very special event!

For more information please email info@graysantiques.com or call 020 7629 7034
or visit www.graysantiques.com

Dealer Highlight: Vincent Martin and Robin Haydock

Both Vincent Martin and Robin Haydock have recently moved to Grays following the redevelopment of Antiquarius. Vince has been in the jewellery trade for 27 years and was, like LAPADA member Robin, a large attraction on the Kings Road. Both have a stunning array of fine, mainly gem-set jewellery that ranges from about 1780 right through to the present day. Engagement rings are also a speciality! Sharing a large stand Robin and Vincent can be found at the rear of Grays Downstairs. With an international clientele and a wide range of jewellery their new stand is a sight to behold!

Antique of the Month: Majolica Pottery

Majolica is glazed earthenware; first fired to biscuit stage then decorated with brightly coloured glaze and fired again to give its characteristic metallic glossy finish. Victorian Majolica was first produced in the late 1840s and had its commercial debut at the Great Exhibition of 1851, where it was exhibited by the Mintons Ltd under the name Palissy Ware. Production continued until the 1900s when tastes changed and the market became flooded with imitations.

The wonderful early Majolica produced by Mintons and Wedgewood, often includes mythological figures, creatures, fruit and vegetables. Some of the imaginative and whimsical designs can be seen amongst Britannia's collection in the front building here at Grays. Other Staffordshire potteries, including the famous Staffordshire spaniels, can also be found within the treasure troves of Cekay and Mary Wellard's stands in Grays Downstairs.

The market price for such pieces has dropped considerably since the 1980s and while they are beginning to come back into fashion, they are still a very affordable collector's item.

Showcase Spotlight: Deco Etcetera

With a beautiful array of original early 20th Century British ceramics, Deco Etcetera is one of the only dealers within Grays to stock fine examples of Clarice Cliffe, Susie Cooper, Shelley and Charlotte Rhead ceramics. You can find Deco Etcetera in showcase V16 in Grays Mews and you can also view more items on their own website www.deco-etcetera.com

Showcase your Collectables

If you have a collection of antiques or collectables and are looking for somewhere to display and sell them, why not rent a showcase at Grays. For more information please contact Jenna on 020 7629 7034 or email info@graysantiques.com
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