Wednesday, 8 April 2009

Introducing Leo, in charge of stock control

Introducing my 'best boy' Leo! He is a four year old ragdoll cat with a lively inquiring mind. He prides himself on keeping every bit of fur and whisker neatly in place and has been known to spend an entire night washing after one of his, thankfully infrequent, trips to the farm next door!! He also takes great pride in inspecting every item which passes through our home on its way to the shop.

Here you see him checking out a Lloyd Loom chair and a leather vanity case, both probably from the 1930's/40's. The spotty bag is filled with smaller goodies including CarltonWare, a vintage cake stand and lots of children's books and maps. All are now in the shop .. except for Leo who is a kept boy and has no ambition to work. He is a keen ornithologist and collects small rodents.

I did a bit of 'homework' on the history of Lloyd Loom furniture ...
The creator of the Lloyd Loom furniture was the American Marshall Burns Lloyd and in 1907 he invented a special loom, partly reinforced with steel wire, which could form a woven fabric by weaving twisted ‘Kraft’ paper. This was the invention of Lloyd Loom, which revolutionised a huge area of the furniture industry.

The new loom woven fabric is much more time efficient; a Lloyd Loom Chair can be produced much faster than it would producing a rattan or synthetic wicker version. The product was therefore much more desirable for the manufacturer, as it was time efficient as well as being much more durable.

The history of Lloyd Loom then changes to Britain, when in 1922 W. Lusty bought the manufacturing rights and began a factory in the East End of London. As Lloyd Loom furniture became increasingly popular, the company W. Lusty & Sons Ltd was nurtured. Lloyd Loom furniture could be seen in affluent locations everywhere, from the Royal Boxes at Wimbledon (even to this day) and Twickenham to the British Army and RAF worldwide.

In 1940 the Luftwaffe, aiming for nearby East India Docks, destroyed the Lusty firm but then, in later years the furniture process was re-established.

I often get pieces for sale with the original date stamp and the 'Lusty' label intact. You might have to look hard to find it in the window since I tend to cover the chairs etc. with cushions and blankets which are being sold.

Now that Mr Fixit (husband Paul) is home from hospital with his new knee, I hope that I will soon have time to show you lots of pics of the shop.

1 comment:

  1. Enjoying reading your blog and looking forward to seeing lots of pictures of your shop. I love loyd loom chairs and Leo looks very handsome in one. I can't believe I have not put one in a picture must fix that I love the shape