Axel Vervoordt

  • Words Ali Morris
  • Photos Salva López

Inside the world of Axel Vervoordt.

Issue 51

, Features

  • Words Ali Morris
  • Photos Salva López

Axel Vervoordt was just 14 when he set out on his first solo antiques-sourcing trip to England in 1961. At the time, hundreds of pieces from the collections of stately homes were being sold off because their aristocratic owners could no longer afford the upkeep. Equipped with a few suitcases and a reasonable sum of money he’d made from working in a local antique shop in his native Antwerp, Belgium, he took the ferry from Zeebrugge to Ipswich. He stayed with relatives and family friends, spending his days riffling through attics stuffed full of furniture and curiosities. He bought what he liked and trusted his instincts.

He returned to Antwerp, suitcases bulging, and sold the whole lot within weeks—mostly to friends of his mother, who told him they were eager for more. It was the fir...

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