My love of vintage chairs
Vintage items are loved by many. Often furniture is made to look vintage or items are designed to compliment the look. I have a particular love of vintage chairs, you’ll see me using them often in my outdoor portrait sessions. I adore how the old wood looks in a natural outdoor environment. It’s not just the look for me though, it’s the story and the history that goes with it. Who used it before? Where did it live and what was it used for? Of course I don’t always know the history and can only wonder.
Let me tell you a little story about one chair that I love. It belonged to my maternal grandparents. They lived in London and enjoyed a simple life, not in the least bit materialistic. They were from an era of make do and mend, something I truly believe in and strive to do better at. Clothes were kept for decades, old furniture was given new purposes (my grandad collected rainwater in an old full sized bath!) and true organic vegetables were grown in their garden. They were happy, in love and adored their family. My Nan died almost 6 years ago now but we lost my Grandad last year. This meant that this year it was time to say goodbye to their family home and it was emotional to say the least. My Mum was born in this house, she grew up there with her 3 brothers and we gathered there for family get togethers.
My last visit to this beautiful house was to capture it for my family. I wanted to preserve all the little details that we held dear so that they’d be more than fading memories and we could look at them whenever we wanted. Of course these images are very personal to us but this one I wanted to show you because it’s where this particular chair came from -my grandparents kitchen. This image was taken from within their coal shed, a place that we always loved to explore as kids.
I love using it! It works so well for school portraits, it’s beautiful yet simple. Of course my sessions aren’t about the chairs, they’re about your children, but they give depth and interest to the images I create. It is somewhere to sit, if only for a moment! The best props are those that just work with the overall look without taking the focus away from your subjects. For me chairs like this are perfect.