There will always be a place in the heart of the artist for that which is old and is beautiful. There have been so many styles and fashions, modes and tastes, and it is fortunate to live at a time when these are all so well-studied, so meticulously catalogued, and so readily available.
Entering any antique store has always brought to me a sense of fascination; the cascading piles of paraphernalia, slithering books, cases of jewellery, furnished goods from cities the world over, vast and dusty relics; all evoking something of the grand and sprawling essence of human experience.
In truth, Brisbane may not be the centre of the world when it comes to antiques—we may not be a towering reliquary of refinement and majesty, but by Jove we can give it a damn good try!
New Farm Antique Centre
85 Commercial Rd, Teneriffe
The New Farm Antique Centre is an inner city institution, a vast and wonderful hoard of the old and magical. In particular, they stock an incredible collection of jewellery, and a spectacular range of prints and paintings, including but not limited to original Normal Lindsays. If you’re in the area, this is one place you simply have to check out, at least once!
Southside Antiques Centre
484 Ipswich Rd, Annerley
Southside Antiques is an establishment, having been in operation since 1983, and family owned since 1986. It boasts one of the largest antique collections in Brisbane, and a large number of well-established, deeply experienced dealers and sellers with a history trading antiques all across the country. Renowned for the variety, quality, and quantity of its stock, this is one trove of past luxuries that cannot be understated!
Camp Hill Antique Centre
545 Old Cleveland Rd, Camp Hill
The Camp Hill Antique Centre (and also Tart Café!) is a fabulous mainstay of the Brisbane antiques market. It’s a wonderful assortment of antique collectors and dealers, offering a vast and varied shopping and browsing experience. Of particular note is that they have over seventy dealers operating under one roof, and their range of specialties is truly magnificent.
Michael Allen Antiques
987 Stanley St E, East Brisbane
One of Brisbane’s oldest antique shops, Michael Allen Antiques sells some of the most incredible furniture. I’m talking Georgian, Victorian, and Edwardian, hewn of the finest timbers, and crafted with a twilight aptitude rarely seen in the world today. They also stock decorative pieces, cast iron goods, ceramics, and the like (snuff boxes, jewels, frames, you get the picture.) They take particular pride in their collections, and, to be frank, it’s fairly incredible. Some of the objects stocked are hundred of years old, irreplaceable, and incontrovertibly treasuresome.
Nudgee Road Antiques
277 Nudgee Rd, Hendra
A major importer, wholesaler, and retailer of classic furniture and fine works of art, Nudgee Road Antiques first opened in 1985, and boy do they put on a show! Providing some of the most reliable, experienced antique evaluations, and specialising in Oriental, European, and Australian antiques, their collections are a marvel, the result of years of practice and refinement.
167 Latrobe Tce, Paddington
What used to be called The Paddington Antique Centre, Empire Revival is situated in the old Plaza Theatre—a glorious piece of interwar Australian architecture. They stock a wild assortment of antiques presented by a vast array of sellers. I once found the most incredible Victorian cake stand, have purchased a pair of yellow-tinted pince-nez, and deeply regret forgoing a pair of vintage leather rodeo-ready riding chaps.
Sherwood Bazaar Antiques
526 Oxley Rd, Sherwood
Sherwood Bazaar has a quirky mixture of the bold and the bizarre, ranging from a wide variety of eras. They have a terrific selection of antiques and retro goods, and sell just about everything—silverware and china, glass and ceramics, furniture, jewellery—you name it; they’ve got it! Known for purchasing their goods locally, privately, and piece by piece, you’re sure to come across some glorious one-off pieces!
21 Crosby Rd, Brisbane City
Now, in all fairness, these folks aren’t messing around. Wallrocks stocks some of the most incredible antiques available on the eastern seaboard—and generally let go of them for equally incredible prices. That’s not to say you can’t get an absolute rush examining their 18th century side-tables, carved Italian marble, or luxurious French marquetry. Were I, say, a landed Duke with a Palladian mansion to furnish, I’d shop here.