Art Deco Drinks Trolley

As this is a week of updates and refreshes, I wanted to revisit this trolley. I think it might be my favourite piece so far this year. And so we are all going to look at it again. My blog my rules. Given that there are basically 365 posts a year, you will forgive me for going back to gaze again every now and then.


It’s been a while since I saw a fabulous trolley that made my heart sing. This, people, is that trolley. Just feast your eyes. Who couldn’t find a place for that in their house? I already have a vintagey kitschy trolley that the telly stands on but this is better. That is one of those ones with an entirely unrealistic map on the shelves which came from a junk shop round the corner and I wheeled home one afternoon expecting the Dearly Beloved to insist that I wheel it straight back again.

But he is used to my ways and frankly, having once furnished an entire flat from skips and rubbish found in Paris, he tends to be relieved when the object has been found in an actual shop rather than just lying on the street. He’s particular like that.

Mind you after the time with the 15ft long plaster of Paris statue, he has slightly insisted that I run things past him first. Are you sitting comfortably? I’ll try to be brief. After having visited one of those trade shows a few years ago I fell for a rather fabulous statue, which was fixed very high by the ceiling (remember that point it’s salient) and asked what would become of it afterwards.

It would, I was told, be destroyed. But I want it, I said. OK they said. And very kindly agreed to send it over when the show was done. A few weeks later there was a knock at the door. There stood two delivery men with (I kid you not) a box that was about 15 ft long. They slid it into the hall until it butted up against the bottom stair and legged it. Actually that’s not quite true, they couldn’t leave quite that fast as they were doubled up with laughter. Once they could breathe, they left, with a screech of tyres. Quite something in a juggernaut on a residential street.

I climbed out over the box and went to fetch the children from school. I had been expecting something about four foot long. It was – salient point reminder – a very high ceiling. I had so wanted to fix this statue to my very tall wall on the top landing. But I was going to have to concede defeat on this point. Then the Dearly Beloved came home.

To his eternal credit, while not actually laughing (or more importantly shouting), he just sort of looked at me (you know that look) and went to fetch the saw. Well he couldn’t fit it in the car and we had to get it to the tip. We then had to dismember the lovely lady statue and transport her limbs and body in separate bags to the car. Heaven knows what the neighbours thought.

When he arrived at the tip, the attendant said only: “Well I thought I’d seen everything. I have now.”

Since then, I have been more careful. But this is a beautiful trolley. From a real live shop, Design Vintage, and everything. And I’ve got some very nice glasses to display on it.

glasses by


Kate Watson-Smyth

The author Kate Watson-Smyth

I’m a journalist who writes about interiors mainly for The Financial Times but I have also written regularly for The Independent and The Daily Mail. My house has been in Living Etc, HeartHome and featured in The Wall Street Journal & Corriere della Sera. I also run an interior styling consultancy Mad About Your House. Welcome to my Mad House.


  1. Your dearly beloved sounds like mine! It makes life interesting I think as they never really know what we are going to come back with next! But that is why they have beautiful and fun interiors! Loved your story

  2. Hahaha I love this. All SO familiar. I am currently fighting with Mark over a vintage trolley that “doesn’t fit” in the lounge (it totally does).
    Yours is an absolute beaut.
    Ps. That succulent is looking healthy – impressed!

  3. Great trolley, hilarious story! There’s a wonderful comedic element to it. Anything creative usually involves taking risks, so with every hit, you’re allowed to have a few misses.

  4. and there was I thinking you were one of those supreme professionals that never made the errors mere home owners make! Brilliant and so well told too!

  5. that made me laugh. My only Aution story is buying an encyclopaedia , not looking beforehand and it was falling to pieces, left it in the boot of the car and took it to the next auction. And made a small profit. X

  6. Too fabulous for words! Love that story about the French statue. Sounds a lot like our household and my long-suffering husband, when it comes to treasures unexpectedly appearing. 🙂

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