14th January 2019
Over the last month I have been cataloging a rare collection of miniature antique prints drawn by the artist John Hassell (1767-1827). These scarce aquatint prints measure only 9x6cm but contain intricate beautiful original watercolour. John Hassell was an English artist who lived in London and...
3rd April 2018
After many years of cataloging early Country Life magazines for their fascinating illustrated main articles on English country houses, stately homes and castles, a particular era that feeds my passion for luxury design and elegant craftsmanship is the 1930's. Prestigious London homes by Mr Oliver Hill with his interiors and beautiful curved external walls that compliment the Art Deco fixures and fittings by interior designers such as Serge Chermayeff of Waring & Gillows...
14th August 2017
Over the last twenty years or so, my late business partner, Trevor and myself attended many country house auctions and sales. One that particularly stands out is the Saddington Hall sale in 2002, including Harold Smith's wonderful collection of mechanical musical instruments and of course, his extensive collection of Country Life magazines.
This was not the first time I had visited the Georgian mansion of Saddington, as in 1997 in my first two weeks of working with Trevor, we had both been invited for lunch and to peruse Mr Smith's large collection of early Country Life. We spent an afternoon at Saddington...
6th May 2017
Rostron & Edwards turns twenty years old this week. Sadly, in January Trevor Rostron passed away and I write this whilst still grieving the loss of not only my business partner of fifteen years but of a very dear friend and mentor.
In 1997, Trevor introduced me to the world of antique books, particularly fine colour plate books and rare antique prints that he was passionate about. We traveled the world, buying at auction houses, Sotheby's, Christies, Bloomsbury and many more alike. I soaked it up like a sponge, I was hooked and fascinated. In the early years of our partnership I was certainly the youngest book dealer bidding in most of the salerooms in London. At times, this was quite daunting, my heart would often start racing ten lots before the item we were to bid on came up! I met many book dealers and collectors and faces became familiar in the auction houses, I learnt about competitors, what others specialised in and my passion and knowledge for architectual books and prints grew.
Trevor was a dealer of antique books, not a collector, which he often told me, yet throughout the partnership we seemed to have endless conversations regarding struggles parting with acquisitions that he considered extremely fine and rare and pieces for ones own wall or bookshelf. This, I feel was always going to be part of our business, for dealing in such beautiful works of art, no matter how professional, at times it was difficult not to get attached to a particular piece of artwork or a book and want it for yourself!
Now, twenty years on, I have a deep-seated passion for what I do and of course I am guilty of collecting myself. Rostron & Edwards continues to grow, specialising in architectural books and prints and early issues of Country Life magazine. We continue to search for rare and interesting items on historic and listed buildings and its a pleasure to regularly supply superb institutions such as The National Trust, English Heritage and museums worldwide.
22nd February 2017
Over the past few weeks we have been cataloging a beautiful collection of original antique pencil drawings of Georgian country houses. These, I feel are amongst some of the most interesting items we have acquired in recent years and certainly the rarest, the detail and accuracy is really quite astounding, of course, I am biased as I have a passion for fine works of art along with precision and detail but after twenty years in the trade, finding this collection of drawings really did excite me. For want of a better phrase, they are one off's! These drawings would normally have gone on to be used and produced as lithographs for books and these lithographs themselves are beautiful pieces, but these Georgian country house subjects drawn by Charles Greenwood and Frederick Peake mid 19th century did not ever make it to the lithographers - making them all the more special!