Compositions, correspondence, and any other writing activities seem to be more romantic and idyllic when done on an antique bureau. A unique type of writing desk, antique bureaus are distinguished by their characteristic retractable or concealable writing surfaces that lend a sense of importance and value to any work being done on such tables. This also allows one to save on space when work ends for the day with the writing surface acting either as a compartment door that could cover up the working area or as a retractable surface that could easily slide into the main body of the antique bureau.
Aside from its unique writing surface, an antique bureau is also a fairly functional piece of furniture because of the various niches and compartments that are incorporated into its overall design. A typical antique bureau has several drawers found as part of its lower half which also serves as a base for a portion of the writing surface. The concealable working area can also have a number of smaller drawers, shelves, or pigeonholes that can be used to hold a variety of other working paraphernalia. Aside from this typical design, some antique bureaus also have bookcases situated on top of the working area allowing books and other reference materials for work to be close at hand. You can see examples of bureaux here.
With most pieces dating back to the 18th and 19th centuries, an antique bureau is truly a period piece that will complement any room or office. The most characteristic styles of antique bureaus coming from this time period are Georgian, Victorian, and Edwardian with most desks made of classical hardwoods such as mahogany, oak, and walnut. The beauty of antique bureaus as functional and decorative furnishings lies in their understated elegance. With most of its surfaces lacking any intricate carvings, their innate splendor comes from the natural wooden grains and stains.
Some of the best places to start when looking for an antique bureau are auction houses and estate sales where the authenticity and condition of such antique furnishings are guaranteed more often than not. Although relatively new, going online has also become a reliable way for searching for and purchasing such antiques. With many distinguished and trustworthy antique dealers putting up their own online catalogues, buying an antique bureau online can be a cost effective and hassle free experience. Notwithstanding the method in which you acquire an antique bureau, it will definitely be a fine addition to any home or office.