Howard furniture keeps on a high at auction

Howard & Sons three-seater sofa – £8900 at Peter Wilson.

Never wholly out of demand since top Victorian upholsterer Howard & Sons began producing furniture from its Soho premises, these built-for-comfort sofas and armchairs continue to excel whenever offered at auction.

Extracted from Antiques Trade Gazette | Terence Ryle

The 6ft 11in (2.10m) wide three-seater sofa offered at Peter Wilson’s (22% buyer’s premium) sale in Nantwich on February 14 required re-upholstering – hence the modest £1000-1500 estimate.

However, it was fully signed with one leg stamped Howard & Son’s Ltd, Berners Street and the brass articulated castors were also carrying the maker’s name.

Consigned from a local private source, it sold to another Cheshire private buyer at £8900.

Lasting appeal

The lasting appeal of Howard furniture is such that the firm, in its present incarnation, Howard Chairs Ltd of Camden Town, still sells the traditional designs.

A pair of mid-to-late 20th century armchairs with rear casters stamped Howard & Sons London went comfortably over estimate in taking £7500 at Mallams (22.5% buyer’s premium) in Abingdon on February 11.