Choosing the right chair.

Here’s the first fun, important (and pretty obvious) historical fact: people didn’t always sit on chairs. Stools, benches, other hard and backless surfaces, sure. But not chairs. Chairs, since their very earliest inception (they became popular in the 16th century), have always been a little special, what with their legs and their backs and all, and so were reserved mainly for kings and emperors and heads of state.

Which leads us, then, to another fun, important (and possibly dubious) historical fact: since the common people got their hands on them, it’s been a steady race to make chairs as goddamn comfortable as possible.

A good chair is one you can stay in for hours and hours and hours, watching telly, poring through detective novels, newspapers or websites.

Marlow is a classic collection of stylish dining, living and bedroom furniture from Frank Hudson.

With the contrast of soft grey paint finish and solid mellow oak tops, and with its subtle hint of white in the grain, this easy to like collection will enhance your home with it’s modern, rustic charm.

Frank Hudson established his company in 1947 and the business has been making fine furniture ever since. Three generations of family have guided the business, designing and creating classically crafted furniture which can be found in homes and hotels all over the world.

Marlow Bedside 3 Drawer Cabinet
W500 x D450 x H655mm

Marlow 4 Drawer Chest
W1000 x D480 x H915mm

drawer   marlow chest




Sitting pretty: Choosing the right sofa-bed can be a bit of minefield can’t it?

You want to get the exact product you want to ensure the comfort of your guests. That’s why we love the high quality British made sofa beds from Alstons.

There are certain questions you’ll need to ask at the outset, such as what type of mattress you want. Pocket sprung are generally good, with the more springs the better. Memory foam tends to divide sleepers more with its lasting impression that moulds to the body.
Also, what type of sofa cushions do you want on the sofa itself? Softer ones that you need to plump daily or more durable ones that do not require much attention?

It is also worth making a decision about the sofa-bed mechanism, with my preferred option being the sofa converting into a bed in one easy movement with wooden slats to provide additional back support.

Interior designer Sarah Ward, of Sarah Ward Associates, recommends investing money so that you get the exact product you want to ensure the comfort of your guests.

She said: ‘The thickness of the mattress and the mechanism will dictate the overall height of the sofa. A corner will unit make the product seem more generous and luxurious. And remember that the bed size will be governed by the seating area within the arms of the sofa.’

Of course Alstons so sofas too. For example The Venice is available as a 2 or 3 seater sofa and the range includes chairs, accent chairs and footstools in a fabulous choice of fabrics.

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Wow this really is a beauty isn’t it?

A beautiful Alstons Sofa in a very contemporary on trend fabric…this year we expect to see an increase in eclectic interiors that show a willingness to make bolder statements with pattern and texture.

Our lads have just delivered this suite to one of our lovely. loyal customers. And they were thrilled!!!!

Alstons have a huge range of styles and fabrics so you can choose something totally that is either a statement piece or fits with your colour palette.

2016 will be the year to experiment with pattern. We will see an increase in eclectic interiors that show a willingness to make bolder statements with pattern and texture. We will move away from the simple colour and single print combination, and instead favour a contrasting mix of paisleys, geometrics, florals and stripes, all incorporated under one scheme. Use pattern on small pieces such as cushions, rugs or an accent chair and offset against a plain block colour wall for an on-trend look in 2016.

Our home accessory collections are going down a storm and some of our new ranges bring a refreshing style for your home.

Mirror mirror on the wall…use mirrors to give the illusion of space, accentuate proportions, bounce around light and add glamour to a room. A brilliant way to bring your colour scheme together as well as add extra depth to a room,

Let there be light… use table lighting to create ambiance and atmosphere.

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Congratulations to Catherine our new SHOPPING SPREE WINNER!

Here’s what she said when we told her:

“Absolutely brilliant to have won this shopping spree at Birds! I love to support local businesses, so I shared the post, without really thinking I would win, so this is a lovely surprise! Thank you Birds….. Everything is so beautiful…. Now what to buy….?”

Have you entered yet?

It’s fairly obvious when a favorite piece of wood furniture needs attention. Food stains and water marks blemish a handsome table; after years of faithful applications, spray-on polishes leave a dark, sticky film on sideboards and chairs.

Cleaning fine wood furniture can be downright dangerous to the furniture’s finish if the wrong methods are used. The key is to start with the gentlest cleansers, working up to stronger solutions as necessary, and to test on discreet areas, such as the inside of a table leg, before tackling large expanses.

First, try a simple cleanser: Dampen a cotton swab with water, add a drop of dish-washing liquid, and test. If the finish survives, make a solution of water and detergent, and wipe the entire piece. Don’t saturate the wood; keep the sponge barely damp, and rinse often. The results can be dramatic. you can also use mineral spirits, a clean cloth, and confident, circular strokes to remove decades of grime.

Wood that remains grubby-looking after the mineral-spirits treatment needs some degree of refinishing. Try rubbing denatured alcohol on a small, hidden area. If the finish does not dissolve, it’s oil, lacquer, polyurethane, or varnish, all of which require professional treatment. If it does dissolve, the finish is shellac. The top layers should be removed and replaced with more of the same, a task that may also call for a professional.

Once it’s been cleaned — by whatever method — wood must be protected. Use wood finishes with wax, applied swiftly and liberally with cheesecloth. Before waxing, lightly rub the wood with fine steel wool, which gently roughs up the surface so that the wax can go on evenly.

For most furniture, use beeswax. We recommend dusting wood furniture with a soft cloth, never a feather duster.

The nation is getting ready to celebrate the Queen’s official 90th birthday this weekend, and a packed schedule of events across Britain.

The Queen turned 90 on April 21, but she also has an official birthday in June – this year it falls on Saturday, June 11.

A traditional church service, the annual birthday parade and a mass street party for 10,000 people will all celebrate the milestone birthday of Britain’s longest reigning sovereign.

You’ll also be able to raise a late-toast to Her Majesty too, as an extension of pub opening hours on Friday and Saturday evening has been arranged to help us all get into the party spirit.

While Her Majesty is celebrating her 90th Birthday this year we are celebrating over 60 years of being a local family business. We’ll be raising a glass to The Queen on her birthday as will many British people. We’re proud of our own heritage, our family values and we’re especially proud to stock many British suppliers and manufacturers with a fair few in Lancashire and the North West.

G Plan
Silent Night
Julien Bowen
Burgess Beds
Hudson Living
Willis and Gambier
Stuart Jones
Rest Assured
Westex Carpets