There are certain words we think are over-used . Stunning is definitely one of those words which should be used sparingly , but often isn’t . There’s one Ebay seller who uses it to describe virtually every piece they’ve got !
Every so often we get the chance to buy something we’ve never seen before , and when it’s a piece that’s got the WOW factor and is truly STUNNING we go out of our way to buy it if possible . As we’ve been buying McIntosh furniture for around 7 or 8 years now and have a good collection of their catalogues it’s really surprising to see pieces that we’ve never seen before either in the flesh or in a catalogue . Amazingly we got the chance to buy 3 such pieces within a 24 hours of each other . As you’ll see both sideboards have the same sunburst rosewood doors , but are otherwise different designs . One of them came with a matching table and 6 chairs . The table is again something we’d never seen before , but is a ” stunning ” variation on a standard model that does turn up occasionally with its matching chairs . Indeed there is a standard table and 4 chairs currently listed on Ebay for what we think is far too high a price as it’s more than we’ll be asking for our much rarer and possibly unique table with 6 chairs .
The radial sunburst design to the doors of the sideboards is the same as used by McIntosh on their teak sideboards . A model we’d seen but never had until 2016 when suddenly we bought and sold 3 of them within a couple of months . It was also used on a circular coffee table they produced in teak and rosewood .
The sideboard with it’s matching table and chairs was apparently bought in Scotland in the late 1960s , but we have no history with the 2nd sideboard . Were they possibly made for display at Exhibitions as McIntosh like White and Newton and others did display pieces at Exhibitions both in the UK and apparently also in Europe occasionally . Trade Exhibitions were obviously important to show off to retailers both large and small , whereas Public Exhibitions such as the Ideal Home Exhibition at Earls Court in London were often used by people as a way of deciding what they were wanting to furnish their homes . Obviously firms like McIntosh would feature their best selling lines as well as new models , and perhaps also a 1 off piece to show the skills and virtuosity of their designers and workforce .
Pieces like these were always going to be a lot more expensive than the standard models , partly because of the choice of the best most costly veneers of what was even then a premium timber , but also because of the extra craftsmanship involved in their manufacture . However the differences in price back in the late 1960s between standard pieces and premium pieces wasn’t as great as it is today . This was partly because there was a large well trained workforce who had gone through a traditional 6 year apprenticeship , something that has long gone now . Also timbers rare or otherwise were available at a price , whereas today many are no longer available , or if they are they’re plantation grown rather than rain forest or other slow grown methods of culture .