Jo Bayley’s Review, The Sydney Fair 2014 – Fashion for Life

Thursday the 22nd of May saw the opening night of the 2nd The Sydney Fair, which specialises in Art Deco and Vintage and was held at the Byron Kennedy hall at Sydney’s Fox Studio.

When we arrived for the 6pm opening there was already a healthy crowd of punters buzzing with anticipation at what goodies would be on offer this year.

And once inside it certainly didn’t disappoint.

It was lovely to peruse such a great collection under one roof whilst enjoying a glass of bubbles and tasty nibbles.

What I love, is that 27 exhibitors from Sydney, interstate and overseas come together under one roof to display their wares.

This year there was more fashion, which is my thing.

Joining my favourite, Coutura Vintage, was Lou Murray Vintage, and for the second year Thrifted and Modern from San Francisco.

Also making the trek from the USA this year was Lucky Vintage from Seattle Washington. My favourite piece from them was a delicate hand painted silk blouse, just wonderful!

While at Coutura Vintage I managed to snaffle up an amazing c1930’s black crepe evening gown from Lena, with a stunning appliquéd jacket and 2 different belts to choose from depending on your mood.

Cut on the bias with covered buttons down the back, this is a unique gown.

Stunning and very Wallis Simpson.

Racks of party dresses, suits a la “Mad Men”, coats that were just begging to be discovered and adorable accessories to finish off your vintage glamour look.

Last year I bought an amazing Lili Ann leopard print coat from her that I just adore. The attention to detail in this period is incredible.

Even better with vintage clothing is that you are almost guaranteed to have a one off piece, which is excellent if you are going to an event and don’t want to bump into a carbon copy of yourself!

A true fashionista always loves an injection of the unique, this is perfectly done with vintage.

Fabulous jewellery, furniture, lighting, sculpture, art, silver, glass and ceramics were on display for all to enjoy.

Featuring design movements of the 20th century, Art Deco, Art Moderne and mid century, this broad spectrum made sure there was something for everyone to enjoy.

Jennifer Wren Antiques had a gorgeous selection of Lea Stein brooches, which are always fun and whimsical.

Brooding Victorian jet, Edwardian cameos and diamonds, and some very sweet sewing paraphernalia.

Chiltons stocked lovely lockets, rings, pendants and wedding jewels. Very romantic.

I think this is a wonderful way for dealers to interact with their customers. I saw quite a few young people who may not frequent antique stores enjoying the amazing pieces on offer. And whilst they might have come for say the fashion, they may leave with an appreciation of other examples of the period.

The great thing about fairs such as this one is that they can de-mystify a world that may seem out of reach to a new generation, and I feel that’s what is needed to keep a love and respect of the past alive.

We saw fabulous pieces of furniture that were affordable and will be collectable in years to come. So next time you go furniture shopping, stop and think outside the box. It is very easy to spend a few thousand dollars at modern generic stores, and those pieces depreciate as soon as they are out of the factory.

How fab to have a unique piece that is an investment, and if you change your mind, or style, you can always sell it on and maybe for a profit!

Take for instance Virtanen Antiques specialising in Scandinavian and 20th Century furniture. Some of their pieces would look amazing in even the most modern apartments. How many Arne Jacobsen copies do we see out in the market these days? How about owning a piece of authentic design.

Deco Diva had original Art Deco pendant lights and lamps, figurines and clocks and a selection of French porcelain.

Prism Lighting had an extensive range of original pre-1940’s, especially moderne and Deco, glass and alabaster shades, wall lights and lamps. Perfect for your renovations!

I was truly impressed with all the stands, what they had to offer, and the knowledge of the dealers. It was obvious that there was a lot of love in the room for their individual areas of expertise. I also loved the interaction between guests, we were attending an event that was exciting to all.

Ladies I had met while waiting for the doors to open saw I had a bag of goodies and were really interested in my loot, and I in theirs. Oohh’s and Ahh’s  were heartfelt.

All in all it was a fantastic night. Enjoyed by many and wonderfully executed by Dianne from Online Antiques, I can’t wait till next years fair.

One thing I know for certain, I will arrive with an empty credit card but it could be very different by the end of the night!

Jo Bayley, The Culture Concept Circle, 2014

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