William Yeoward is the UK based designer of Lady Margaret Thatcher’s last home in England and a name synonymous with fine crystal. For instance, William Yeoward Crystal holds the Royal Warrant of Appointment as Supplier of Crystal Glass to His Royal Highness The Prince of Wales. In addition, William showed off his infamous sense of fun and playfulness, and love of fine craft, inside each drawer of his *COLLECTED* furniture collection, shown at the Spring 2014 High Point market in the Jonathan Charles showroom.
A surprise awaited me, in William Yeoward furniture – all of it. For instance, when a drawer or cubbyhole was opened and I was greeted with either polka dots or marbled inlaid wood patterns. Who can resist the wit and surprise-and beauty-of hand cut inlaid marquetry polka dots or marbling? #Swoon!
Are you ready for a tour of a few of my favorite pieces?
William Yeoward furniture – TENBURY Games Table
The TENBURY Games Table. I would own this piece in a heartbeat. This table features a chessboard stacked on a group of wooden books. Many of the “books” are also secret draws.
But just not any ordinary secret drawer -see below 🙂
Each of the secret drawers contains different patterns. Inlaid wood marbling combined with polka dots inlaid into the tops of some of the stacked “books”.
What a playful piece of furniture that doesn’t take itself too seriously. However, it is, indeed, a very serious example of fine workmanship. In addition, I believe one that will be an heirloom collectible in years to come.
Above all, I love the idea of the TENBURY game table for use in a bay window in your own homes. Don’t forget your window would need protection so the sunlight does not fade the beautiful wood colors. Read more about trends on window treatments here by Kim Darden Shaver. In addition, do read Jackie Von Tobel’s book on window treatments.
In conclusion, I would love for the Bienenstock Furniture Library, to have one of these to show the visiting scholars to the rare book room what fine woodworking looks like today. The Bienenstock Furniture Library is listed on the National Register of Historic Places (as per the plaque below) and located in High Point, North Carolina. I think England’s Thomas Chippendale (who published the famous The Gentleman and Cabinet Maker’s Director), the first cabinetmaker to ever publish a book of his furniture designs, would approve. Do you?
William Yeoward furniture – GODWYN Table
The GODWYN Table. Notice the adorable, alert ears of its hand-carved fox head. For instance, the fox head stands out amongst deeply swagged leaves and foliage. In addition, notice how the fox and foliage are carved on each side of GODWYN.
Beautiful, charming and witty no matter which side guests enter the room from.
Do you love this as much as I do?
In addition, notice the polka dots on the inside of the drawer.
Similarly, here’s my own picture, taken in the Jonathan Charles showroom at High Point Market (at 200 Hamilton in the North Court ), of the Godwyn table. In addition, I loved the table mixed with this red cashmere covered chair (on casters for family-friendly living). After that, I enjoyed the more modern rug placed atop the painted hexagon shapes on the wooden floor. Traditional furniture mixed with modern shapes = perfection!
William Yeoward furniture – MINSHULL Dresser
Every single aspect of his MINSHULL dresser, below, thrilled me right down to my bones.
This gorgeous piece, in a vintage oak finish, with its 16 drawers, 8 private and 8 public, was a tour de force of fine craftsmanship, inspired by the 18th-century English period.
Therefore, here’s the catalog picture of it, below. In addition, because the finish color looks very different from my own picture of it, above, please ask Leslie Hendrix Wood for a finish sample for approval. In other words, if you decide you might like to buy it for your own homes.
Isn’t the wood grain of the oak spectacular – not to mention the jewelry like hand-forged iron hardware in his signature shield shape?
William Yeoward furniture – ALNWICK Bureau
It’s hard to stop… so I won’t….
Here’s the 4th piece that I fell in love with.
His ALNWICK bureau with it’s pale blue wash inside and it’s pretty balustrade to hold your dishes, collectibles or stationery items.
I could write thank you notes on this, and be happy for the rest of my life, what about you?
At High Point Market, he had the top portion accessorized like this.
Who can resist that dog’s face? I could not.
Here’s William Yeoward, standing in front of it. I love the lamp in the background, it’s so playful, yet with a more traditional shape that mixes perfectly with the exaggerated cornice on the top of his ALMWICK bureau.
The handpainted Limoges porcelain Civry small gold tray. Perfect to hold a little something special on this bureau. In addition, the tray is featured in the picture below in this article from Martha Stewart Weddings. Similarly, it can be a lovely gift as the summer wedding season approaches. Did you see our post on the art of writing gracious thank you notes, featuring Mrs. John L. Strong? If not, please come back and click here, to read it.
So, who is William Yeoward when he’s not busy being photographed around the world? Here’s a wonderful picture of him from his home in England’s Cotswalds, relaxing at his kitchen table. In addition, this article, by Rita Konig with photographs by Paul Ryan, from The Telegraph, will give you a glimpse into his lovely home. In other words, a former Victorian Gothic schoolhouse with its 15-foot high kitchen ceilings. Above all, gain a glimpse into the mind of one of this century’s most talented and respected designers.
Is a piece of William Yeoward furniture COLLECTED in your immediate future?
If not, maybe, a wedding or graduation gift is?
Therefore, could his stunning hand-cut and carved Irish crystal PORTIA cake stand be for you?
Leslie Hendrix Wood just bought this one for a friend of her daughter’s.
With Mr. Yeoward’s prodigious talent, it appears that you CAN have your cake and eat it, too.
What about eating cakes at a table set like this one below for a spring or summer graduation, baby shower or wedding luncheon? Featured in Traditional Home’s *Best of Britain* issue.
Similarly, maybe you enjoy thinking outside the box, like the editors of Martha Stewart Weddings do. The editors suggested to their readers that they consider using William Yeoward KAREN champagne ice bucket for this spectacular flower arrangement.
Or maybe your preference is to set a very formal, traditional table like this one below. This table shows his Helena stemware in the famous Pink Room at Dumfries House in Scotland. Dumfries’ house was recently restored by Prince Charles, as featured in Architectural Digest.
However, maybe you enjoy a bit more modern, lush table. For instance, this set with his Felicity crystal for last year’s Lenox Hill gala in New York. The gala was held by Brooke Gomez, the daughter of AD Top 100 designer, Mariette Hines Gomez, of Gomez Associates.
In conclusion, thank you, Mr. Yeoward, for inspiring us, and our readers, with your vision of what a comfortable, elegant, gracious home can be. We love this quote of yours from The London Magazine’s interview with you, here:
“Being able to relax has to be the beginning of decoration.”
~ Thank you ~
Leslie Hendrix Wood
Founder, Editor In Chief
Gracious Living. Timeless Design. Family Traditions.
The final image of Mr. Yeoward was taken by Gavin Kingcome for Elle Decor.