De Sede armchairs

Family run business, De Sede, originated in a small saddler’s workshop in Klingnau, Switzerland. With craftsman committed to making the best possible leather into beautifully designed seating, and an ethos that quality is a guarantee for success, they grew to be one of the world’s leading manufacturers of exclusive leather furniture.

De Sede is dedicated to designing furniture that will bring soul to a room, using leather that is ’uniquely created by nature with its pattern of pores, grain, surface structure and folds’ and treated using an ancient, chemical process so that the skin is preserved and made durable whilst being amazingly supple and smooth to the touch.

Evidence of De Sede’s high quality materials and attention to detail is very much apparent in this pair of black leather armchairs on chrome supports. In completely original condition, without tears or rips, the buttoned seats and stitched back supports are a superb example of the timeless designs combined with traditional and precise workmanship that has earned the brand an international reputation.

You can view them in our shop by clicking this link.

Homes and Gardens magazine

David Flatt at Circa Battersea sources the best 20th century designs and has been wonderful at spotting the right pieces for us. These days, he’s so attuned to my taste that he’ll see a piece on a buying trip and know it’s perfect for our home.”  Christina Reti.

Christina Reti recently restored a London townhouse, previously converted into bedsits, back into a family home. Not only is Christina a specialist in fine art and identifying forgeries, she is a mid century modern design enthusiast and a valued client of ours, so we were delighted to see so many of our pieces in her recent article for “Homes & Gardens”.

Pictured in the sitting and dining room are a pair of large, bespoke, Victorian Carrara marble surrounds, each with a cast iron arch interior, and a pair of 1970’s Kalmar ice glass chandeliers – chosen for Christina’s love of their texture and refracted light – can be seen hanging in the sitting room and over the dining table.

The highly polished black and chrome sideboard by Willy Rizzo for Mario Sabot is a very handsome addition to this supremely tasteful living space and is well complemented by one of a pair of brass topped circular occasional tables –  actually a cafe table – and a small French bar cart in brass and glass.

The whole area is fitted with double smoked, white oiled chevron which continues throughout the kitchen and hallway and, in the guest bedroom – where Christina wanted to recreate a Canadian feel reminiscent of her family’s log cabin – we fitted the walls with Yaccona oak. Both were taken from Marmorea’s exclusive range of wood flooring.

When speaking of the moulded glass 60’s sputnik chandeliers in the bedroom and bathroom, Christina says that it was worth waiting for the right pieces to come along, and we can see that this ethos is echoed throughout her “stylishly individual but eminently practical home”.

Belgravia installations

Circa, in conjunction with sister company Marmorea, have recently undertaken the installation of wood flooring, fire surrounds, furniture, lighting and artwork in five Belgravia apartments.

All the flooring is from our exclusive range produced in the Netherlands and, for this project, we chose Pale Grey, Black Forest and also some herringbone.

Three of the apartments have been fitted with original Louis XVI fire surrounds, and two with Louis XV surrounds in either marble or, as pictured above, French limestone.

In the large living room of one of the flats, an 18 arm sputnik style, brass sputnik chandelier by Stilnovo, Italy, hangs alongside a beautiful and unusual lead crystal Murano prism chandelier; the contrast creating an individual and appealing aspect.

The entrance to the penthouse flat is home to yet another style of lighting – this time an elegant French, bronze cast lantern with a decorative balustrade and a four tree light within – which adds a finishing touch to the already superb combination of tiles, brick wall and glass.

Also in the penthouse is the shot of a vintage, Los Angeles optician sign by renowned photographer, Jack English. Very much in keeping with the New York industrial style, it is a perfect complement for both the decor and the Louis XVI limestone surround it hangs above.

Watch out for another blog featuring more mid-century furniture, lighting, and artwork throughout these prestigious apartments.

Belgravia Installations

Everyone needs a Ghyczy

Peter Ghyczy is a German designer of Hungarian origin who had a major impact on international design.

He designed the famous ‘egg chair’ – once on loan to the Victoria and Albert museum – while employed at polyurethane factory, Elastogran, in Lemforde, where he was responsible for developing model polyurethane products.

In 1972 he founded Ghyczy and co and presented his first furniture collection based on casting techniques which he transferred from plastic to metal.

His aim was to create ‘independent and unique pieces of furniture’ and many of his patented methods – especially the innovative clamping of glass and metal together, as in the design of this ‘frameless table’ – have been copied and used for entire product lines.

Looking at this table, it is very easy to see why Ghyczy’s avant garde technique caught the imagination of the design industry. Created using only the highest quality materials, it features the Ghyczy emblem on the base with a thick, shaped, glass top, and is a substantial, yet refined piece.

“My designs take their orientation from their purpose” says Ghyczy, and we can only conclude that – in this case – part of that purpose is to be fabulous. View this piece by clicking the link.

Chic chairs from R & A Augousti

Husband and wife team, Ria and Yiouri Augousti, are masters of creating beautiful furniture using unconventional materials.

Their dream of building a collection of furniture and home accessories began thirty years ago and was inspired by various cultures, arts and architecture encountered on their extensive travels.

Now, with showrooms in Paris’ fashionable 7th Arrondissement and – more recently – in New York City, they are a truly successful team with a furniture range sought after by many high profile clients.

This large, box shaped pair of armchairs epitomises how they create simple designs that look wonderfully contemporary but can be successfully combined with many different styles of decor and will really stand the test of time.

The frame – on tubular steel supports – is covered in squares of parchment and perfectly complements the white leather of the cushions giving an overall effect of understated chic.

The high level of craftsmanship and superior materials used to construct these chairs is clearly evident upon inspection and – as would be expected from R & A Augousti – they are supremely comfortable.

Magazine Features

It’s all been happening at Circa and Marmorea recently, with two Circa pieces featured in this months edition of ‘Livingetc’ and an interview in ‘Homes & Antiques’.

When you are passionate about a subject it is wonderful to have the opportunity to discuss it, so our interview about mid-century modern lighting with ‘Homes & Antiques’ magazine was a pleasure as well as welcome exposure for our three showrooms.

Our featured pieces in ‘Livingetc’ were on loan to the magazine as part of two stylish, dressed room shots.

The life size bronze cast whippet, and the palm tree lamp by Maison Jansen are two very different but equally pleasing pieces, and it is great  to see how harmoniously they integrate into the themes of both rooms.

You can find the whippet on our products page but the lamp has now been sold.

Living Etc Magazine

Tiger, Tiger Burning Bright

If you have an eye for the unusual and the head for a good investment, this life-size tiger bust from Mexican artist and sculptor, Sergio Bustamante, should appeal to you. Not only does it look magnificent, it is likely to increase in value due to a growing demand for Bustamante’s work around the world in countries such as Mexico, USA, Japan, Europe and, more recently, Russia.

But, before we talk about the man, lets talk about the beast; and what a handsome beast it is. Made from brass, copper and tin, it is part of a hand crafted, limited edition, and is therefore unique.

A stunning sculpture from all angles, the materials blend effortlessly together to form the refined features of a tiger with a regal, yet somehow, gentle expression.

The long growth of hair around the neck – definitive of male tigers – is a particularly pleasing aspect of this sculpture, with the three different coloured metals combining to achieve a real sense of vibrancy and movement.

Animals have been one of the recurring themes in Bustamante’s work since the mid 70’s when he turned his hand from painting and paper mache, to sculptures in wood and bronze. Since then, his magical and imaginative creations have led him to be internationally recognised in the world of creative art, with the Mexican government choosing his pieces as official gifts to state governors and prominent personalities.

With the design of exquisite jewellery, ceramic sculptures, and innovative furniture all featuring in Bustamante’s extensive list of talents, you can be sure we will be looking out for more of his work in the future.

The Tiger Bust Sculpture will be appearing on our website soon, so look out for it.

Sergio Bustamante Sculpture

Jean Charles de Castlebajac designs

Jean Charles de Castlebajac – also known as JC/DC – is a French nobleman and multi dimensional designer.

Jean Charles’ design career started in the fashion industry where he achieved international success from his imaginative clothing. His first showcase included the famous ‘coat cut from a blanket’ which retains an iconic status in fashion circles to this day.

He has designed a watch inspired by lego, a jacket made from teddy bears worn by Madonna and Helena Christensen, and once dressed 5,00 priests, 500 bishops and The Pope for a visit to Paris.

No surprise then that Jean Charles eventually turned his hand to the creation of stylish home furnishings such as these elegant coffee tables.

Whilst one is a simple square and the other a two tiered rectangle, they have the same raised frame surrounding the glass, and – in the chrome and brass that is always a great combination – are equally eye catching.

Classic designs that will stand the test of time. Unlike one of JC/DC’s less successful ideas of an astro turf body warmer!

Take a trip to our products pages to see these and other tables from our extensive inventory.


Circa Revamped

Our Circa showroom has recently been revamped – fresh and new, but keeping to our usual grey and gold theme – and we are showcasing some interesting recent acquisitions alongside those already in our inventory.

The large Italian curved sofa, reupholstered in red velvet, along with the salon of Paola Buffa lounge furniture provide the perfect centrepiece to demonstrate how lighting, tables and seating could look when put together in a home environment, and to show how a diverse mix of styles can be such an inspiration for interior design ideas.

The lighting on show ranges from a colourful and quirky Italian ‘Triennale’ floor lamp to a pair of elegant Cristal Arte chandeliers that make for a wonderful complement to the large brass framed 1960’s Italian mirror; a very stylish piece with an inset faceted geometric design in gold and ruby. We have hung it landscape to fit with our decor but it looks equally appealing hung portrait or floor standing as in the picture on our website.

A range of cocktail, coffee and side tables – including a sleek, octagonal Romeo Rega design – are on display, and the dark stained oak flooring has been provided by our sister company, Marmorea.

We think it has a certain panache, but don’t take our word for it, come along and take a look for yourself.

We would love to see you!

And keep your eyes on the Marmorea site for an upcoming blog about our superior quality, Dutch wood flooring.

circa battersea

How to spend it

We have recently had the pleasure of being featured in a Financial Times ‘How to spend it’ article focusing on the rising popularity of drinks trolleys – or bar carts if you prefer – which ties in with an earlier Facebook post on the same subject.

The FT article explores the sense of occasion and glamour that drinks trolleys foster, and why vintage pieces – particularly interwar and midcentury designs – are becoming very sought after with cocktail enthusiasts wishing to bring ceremony to their homes.

Art deco specialist, Joreoen Markies, is quoted as saying that “mixing a drink in the room adds to the drama” and Galina Kuzmenko, principal banker at the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development, loves to wheel out her 1950’s drinks trolley with a flourish when entertaining.

No doubt about it, a bar cart with the wow factor can be a real conversation piece, and here is what the FT had to say about our own contribution to this stylish resurgence:

‘Some stunning trolleys can be found at Circa and Marmorea London (which trade on 1stdibs), including a sleek design (£3,200) in solid brass and glass, which owner David Flatt picked up at an antiques fair in Montpellier: “It’s neoclassical in style but still has that midcentury feel.”

But drinks trolleys are not just for cocktail lovers. Sometimes they’re used as bathroom stands and bedside tables or for serving afternoon tea. Flatt has also seen them stacked with books (“like a mobile library”) or used as a computer table.

Useful and beautiful. A winning combination every time. View the trolley here.

Our collaboration with Roma

In June 2015, following the opening of the Marmorea Kensington show-room, we developed a collaboration with property investment and refurbishment firm, Roma. We sourced a number of vintage furniture and lighting pieces for Roma’s spectacular two bedroom, 1100 square foot period apartment in fashionable Pimlico. The newly refurbished flat which was once the London pied-à-terre of Lord Parkinson, Margaret Thatcher’s favourite cabinet minister, has attracted attention for its stylish design. It is currently on the market for £1.595 million – please click this link to view the details.

Please contact one of the joint agents, Marsh & Parsons or Savills, if you would be interested in viewing it.

Celebrate in style

With the festive season approaching, we know that many of you will be preparing your homes for an influx of guests so we thought it would be nice to share a few interesting items that may spark some conversation when sitting by the fire with a well earned glass of something; possibly served on a table such as this unusual gueridon.

Although ‘gueridon’ has become a generic term for any small, usually circular, table supported by one or more columns, the early gueridons – which originated in France towards the middle of the 17th century – were characterised by sculptural human, animal or mythological figures acting as supports.

The one we have here is a Neoclassical design in the manner of Jansen, and features brass rams head supports and brass hoof feet. A beautifully detailed and very interesting 1960’s table.

Be ready to pass around the sweets with this attractive bon bon dish by Aldo Tura. Again 1960’s, the dish reflects Tura’s use of flowing lines and free shapes and has two brass rods intertwined at the middle to create a stylish handle.

Lastly, a distinctive rosewood, Italian cocktail cabinet.

The doors to the cabinet feature an Egyptian scene painted in pastels and the mirrored interior has three drawers. The bowed, reeded front supported on tapering legs with brass feet add the final touch to this charming 1950’s dry bar.