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Bureaux and Secretaire Chests

An antique bureau, or secretaire chest, is a thing of great joy to anyone who has a number documents to keep safe, away from prying eyes, and who al…

An antique bureau, or secretaire chest, is a thing of great joy to anyone who has a number documents to keep safe, away from prying eyes, and who also needs somewhere to work, to write, and to read. A bureau or secretaire chest combines all of these functions into an attractive and secure item of furniture that is as popular today as it was when first introduced several centuries ago.

Bureaus and secretaire chests come in a number of different styles and are available to suit all types of decor and room sizes.

Petite & Elegant Bureau De Dame - French Ladies Writing Desk

The bureau de dame is a type of bureau that originated in France, hence the name, which is, in effect, a smaller version of a full size bureau intended for use by a woman. It makes the assumption of course that ladies require less space to work in as compared to men, which is probably contentious and will one day be the subject of a debate.  For now however we will just go with the flow which has been established over time and offer a nice range of bureau de dame for sale in our showroom and online, all in excellent condition.

A bureau de dame typically consists of a lockable top, sometimes curved - as in a “cylinder bureau.” Sometimes flat, it opens to reveal the storage area and, usually, a drop down writing surface, often with a leather insert writing top.

The big attraction of a bureau de dame is that they are usually small enough to fit into a space that would not be big enough to accommodate a full size bureau.

Why not take a look at our current stock of bureau de dame and contact us if you require further information about any of them?  Just use the contact details found on every page and quote the item’s reference number if you are enquiring about a particular piece of furniture.

Antique Cylinder Bureau

A cylinder bureau is one which has a curved, usually lockable top which simply rolls away into the back of the bureau to reveal all the various storage compartments, drawers, and a writing surface, usually with a hand-tooled leather insert.

Apart from their obvious usefulness as a workstation and for storage of documents that need to be under lock and key, cylinder bureaux can also be very attractive items of furniture when closed up and not in use. Nice examples in excellent condition are in demand, so if you see one that you like please do not delay in reserving it.

Antique Bureau Bookcase

Why not combine the usefulness and storage capacity of a bureau with the ability to store and display your prized collection of books, all in one piece of furniture? Great idea? Well yes, but it has been around for a long time - the bureau bookcase is the ultimate functional item of furniture that also looks fantastic, especially when it is full of lovely books - you know, the ones you never read but which look great. The bookcase element of the bureau bookcase usually has a glazed from which protects the books and keeps out the dust.

Bonheur Du Jour

Another bureau variation, the Bonheur Du Jour, is a small ladies writing desk with a fold up writing surface and a number of storage compartments or drawers that may be used for stationery, but which would also often be used to store ladies toiletries as well. Bonheur Du Jour are often highly decorated, with inlays and marquetry, and are often made from very fine timbers such as burr walnut. They are usually not very wide, less than three feet in width is commonplace, and are usually finished all the way round so they do not have to be placed against a wall. This is ideal if the Bonheur Du Jour was being taken on a trip with the lady of the house in days gone by, but still useful today since it gives you freedom to place the item anywhere you choose.

Secretaire a Abattant - Drop Leaf Desk

A Secretaire a abattant is another variation of the basic bureau idea which takes the form of a tall French writing desk with an upper part that resembles an armoire with a door at its base. The top of the secretaire a abattant is often flap-fronted and opens up in order to make a useful, large, writing surface.

Secretaire a abattant tend to be larger than other bureaus, especially in terms of their height, so care should be taken when purchasing for a room where space is limited or where ceilings are low. They are often very decorative, having marquetry and other decoration, and they make excellent display pieces.

Find the Right Antique Bureau or Secretaire Chest For Your Office - Here at Regent Antiques

We are able to offer our customers a wide choice of antique bureaus and antique secretaire chests in a range of different materials and styles, dating back anything from a few years, to a few hundred years. English, Victorian, French, Spanish and Dutch styles are all currently represented in our range with more arriving daily.

Our own restoration workshops take pride in restoring antique bureaux to their former magnificence and you will be as proud as punch to own one of them so why not take a look and see what’s in stock right now? The item’s description will tell you about the condition and whether any restoration work has been carried out.

Please also make use of the extensive photo galleries that we include with every item so that you can satisfy yourself as to the condition of the piece. Our team are always on hand, both in person at the showroom, by email or on the telephone, to discuss any aspect of the antique bureau that you are interested in. Callers are welcome at the showroom every weekday from 10am until 5pm and on some Saturdays. You will find contact details on every page and up to date opening times, including Saturday openings, on the homepage of this website.

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