Antiques News & Fairs
all about antiques design & fairs since 1998
ANTIQUES NEWS & FAIRS - a one stop resource from the world of antiques, art and design, with a top ranked antiques fairs calendar and previews of upcoming antiques and art fairs.

ANF Blog

In Conversation with... James Driscoll of Driscolls Antiques

Driscolls Antiques, specialists in high quality British antique furniture and unique antique collectables, was established over 30 years ago. In this time, they have developed some of the best restoration techniques, in combination with traditional methods, for bringing antique furniture back to its former glory

Driscolls Antiques, now LAPADA and CINOA members, are based in Lancashire, ideally situated for its many northern customers, but also conveniently located for a client base that stretches throughout the UK.

In the first edition of our new feature, 'In Conversation With...', we sat down with James Driscoll of Driscolls Antiques, to learn a little more about the inspiration behind his work, his day-to-day operations, and his views on the current return to popularity of brown furniture.

In Conversation with... James Driscoll of Driscolls Antiques

James Driscoll, of Driscoll Antiques

ANF - Tell us about your business and how long you have been working in the antiques trade.

JD - From school, I would help my Dad with his house clearance, restoration and antiques business in Todmorden, so I have always had an interest.  At the age of 16, I left home for college in Scotland but whilst away, my Dad found out he was terminally ill, so I came back home to help him run thebusiness and this is where my journey began. I helped my dad for around a year and he taught me a lot during this time, along with taking a private part-time college course in restoring antique furniture. I then spent the next few years perfecting restoration skills and studying antique furniture.  I have now been in the trade for 20 years and it has grown from strength to strength. I now have a large warehouse in Clitheroe and it is full of high quality antique furniture.

In Conversation with... James Driscoll of Driscolls Antiques

ANF – What are the most significant changes you have seen during your career?

JD - I have seen some big shifts in the trade over the last few years, especially with so-called brown furniture. I think the term brown furniture is too generalised so all antique furniture from low quality rubbish to very high quality pieces get a bad name.  The lower quality furniture is what I would call brown furniture and was previously called ‘shipping furniture’.  Prices have been very low on so-called brown furniture and painted came in a big way but over the last couple of years - I have noticed a huge interest in higher quality antique furniture and we no longer sell much painted. Our sales of quality antique furniture have gone up dramatically and it is becoming much harder to buy now. I have seen prices increasing in salerooms and I think there is going to be a correction soon on prices so hopefully antique furniture is on its way back.

In Conversation with... James Driscoll of Driscolls Antiques

ANF – Do you enjoy the work more now than when you started and why?

JD - Yes, I absolutely love my job and I enjoy it far more now as I can pick and choose what I want to deal in. Many years back, the bank would not lend much money so I was reliant on very quick turnover, so I would have to sell very choice pieces quickly to the trade to keep afloat.  Now I am happy to sit on nice pieces and not worry (although the nice pieces sell far quicker than the general stock so I don’t see them for very long).

ANF – Do you exhibit or buy at any antiques fairs here or overseas?

JD - No, unfortunately I do not get time to go to any fairs as I'm so busy buying, restoring and selling, although I would like to try a few fairs in the future, probably Antiques for Everyone at the NEC as I think they are a good platform to advertise my business to new clients.

In Conversation with... James Driscoll of Driscolls Antiques

ANF – Has anyone in particular influenced your career?

JD - My Dad was a big influence in my career and my Mother-in-law as she helped me get the online side of my business running. I think also coming from very little really drives me to do better as I don’t want to go back to scrimping again!

In Conversation with... James Driscoll of Driscolls Antiques

ANF – What is the best part of your day to day work?

JD - Seeing what new items are coming through the door as I love to look at the new stock.

In Conversation with... James Driscoll of Driscolls Antiques

ANF - If you had to jump ship what would be your choice as an alternative career?

JD - I think I would like to try being a stock broker as I quite like the idea of trading in stocks and shares, but I think the best investment at the moment is quality antique furniture.

In Conversation with... James Driscoll of Driscolls Antiques

ANF – What do you think are the most important trends in the trade in the C21st?

JD - I think you need a website to advertise and drive people into your shop, you need a good showroom and you need to specialse in a certain line, that’s my opinion anyway.

ANF – Do you belong to any trade associations and what benefit do you derive from the membership?

JD - I am a LAPADA member as I think this shows my clients the confidence to buy from ourselves.

ANF – What piece of advice would you offer anyone, of any age, who might be considering entering the antiques trade as a profession?

JD - Only deal in quality as you will never get stuck with it.

In Conversation with... James Driscoll of Driscolls Antiques

ANF – What do you do to unwind if you ever do!

JD - I'm pretty much all go, with my business and three children so when I eventually wind down, a glass of red wine and good TV show before bed. I do make sure we go on a really nice holiday every year and then I try to completely shut off from the world, even though I am usually still doing emails but it's on a sun lounger so more relaxed.

In Conversation with... James Driscoll of Driscolls Antiques

 

Driscolls Antiques, now LAPADA and CINOA members, are based in Lancashire, ideally situated for its many northern customers, but also conveniently located for a client base that stretches throughout the UK. For more information about Driscolls Antiques, visit Driscolls Antiques.

Save



Antiques News Blog

In Conversation with... James Driscoll of Driscolls Antiques

Driscolls Antiques, specialists in high quality British antique furniture and unique antique collectables, was established over 30 years ago. In this time, they have developed some of the best restoration techniques, in combination with traditional methods, for bringing antique furniture back to its former glory

Driscolls Antiques, now LAPADA and CINOA members, are based in Lancashire, ideally situated for its many northern customers, but also conveniently located for a client base that stretches throughout the UK.

In the first edition of our new feature, 'In Conversation With...', we sat down with James Driscoll of Driscolls Antiques, to learn a little more about the inspiration behind his work, his day-to-day operations, and his views on the current return to popularity of brown furniture.

In Conversation with... James Driscoll of Driscolls Antiques

James Driscoll, of Driscoll Antiques

ANF - Tell us about your business and how long you have been working in the antiques trade.

JD - From school, I would help my Dad with his house clearance, restoration and antiques business in Todmorden, so I have always had an interest.  At the age of 16, I left home for college in Scotland but whilst away, my Dad found out he was terminally ill, so I came back home to help him run thebusiness and this is where my journey began. I helped my dad for around a year and he taught me a lot during this time, along with taking a private part-time college course in restoring antique furniture. I then spent the next few years perfecting restoration skills and studying antique furniture.  I have now been in the trade for 20 years and it has grown from strength to strength. I now have a large warehouse in Clitheroe and it is full of high quality antique furniture.

In Conversation with... James Driscoll of Driscolls Antiques

ANF – What are the most significant changes you have seen during your career?

JD - I have seen some big shifts in the trade over the last few years, especially with so-called brown furniture. I think the term brown furniture is too generalised so all antique furniture from low quality rubbish to very high quality pieces get a bad name.  The lower quality furniture is what I would call brown furniture and was previously called ‘shipping furniture’.  Prices have been very low on so-called brown furniture and painted came in a big way but over the last couple of years - I have noticed a huge interest in higher quality antique furniture and we no longer sell much painted. Our sales of quality antique furniture have gone up dramatically and it is becoming much harder to buy now. I have seen prices increasing in salerooms and I think there is going to be a correction soon on prices so hopefully antique furniture is on its way back.

In Conversation with... James Driscoll of Driscolls Antiques

ANF – Do you enjoy the work more now than when you started and why?

JD - Yes, I absolutely love my job and I enjoy it far more now as I can pick and choose what I want to deal in. Many years back, the bank would not lend much money so I was reliant on very quick turnover, so I would have to sell very choice pieces quickly to the trade to keep afloat.  Now I am happy to sit on nice pieces and not worry (although the nice pieces sell far quicker than the general stock so I don’t see them for very long).

ANF – Do you exhibit or buy at any antiques fairs here or overseas?

JD - No, unfortunately I do not get time to go to any fairs as I'm so busy buying, restoring and selling, although I would like to try a few fairs in the future, probably Antiques for Everyone at the NEC as I think they are a good platform to advertise my business to new clients.

In Conversation with... James Driscoll of Driscolls Antiques

ANF – Has anyone in particular influenced your career?

JD - My Dad was a big influence in my career and my Mother-in-law as she helped me get the online side of my business running. I think also coming from very little really drives me to do better as I don’t want to go back to scrimping again!

In Conversation with... James Driscoll of Driscolls Antiques

ANF – What is the best part of your day to day work?

JD - Seeing what new items are coming through the door as I love to look at the new stock.

In Conversation with... James Driscoll of Driscolls Antiques

ANF - If you had to jump ship what would be your choice as an alternative career?

JD - I think I would like to try being a stock broker as I quite like the idea of trading in stocks and shares, but I think the best investment at the moment is quality antique furniture.

In Conversation with... James Driscoll of Driscolls Antiques

ANF – What do you think are the most important trends in the trade in the C21st?

JD - I think you need a website to advertise and drive people into your shop, you need a good showroom and you need to specialse in a certain line, that’s my opinion anyway.

ANF – Do you belong to any trade associations and what benefit do you derive from the membership?

JD - I am a LAPADA member as I think this shows my clients the confidence to buy from ourselves.

ANF – What piece of advice would you offer anyone, of any age, who might be considering entering the antiques trade as a profession?

JD - Only deal in quality as you will never get stuck with it.

In Conversation with... James Driscoll of Driscolls Antiques

ANF – What do you do to unwind if you ever do!

JD - I'm pretty much all go, with my business and three children so when I eventually wind down, a glass of red wine and good TV show before bed. I do make sure we go on a really nice holiday every year and then I try to completely shut off from the world, even though I am usually still doing emails but it's on a sun lounger so more relaxed.

In Conversation with... James Driscoll of Driscolls Antiques

 

Driscolls Antiques, now LAPADA and CINOA members, are based in Lancashire, ideally situated for its many northern customers, but also conveniently located for a client base that stretches throughout the UK. For more information about Driscolls Antiques, visit Driscolls Antiques.

Save