Writing Bureaus

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Even the word bureau conjures up exotic images of another era. Taken from the Latin word “burrus”, meaning red, desks in the ancient world were covered in a red fabric. At one time, writing bureaus were simple portable boxes featuring sloping lids which acted as a surface for writing however, during the 17th century, changes began to be seen as this simple item evolved into a fully-fledged piece of furniture. Both antique and vintage writing bureaus are incredibly popular today among homeowners who appreciate quality, style and functionality paired with beautiful aesthetics. Find gorgeous writing bureaus here at Vinterior and unleash your inner writer.

A bit about writing bureaus?

Although writing desks may look different depending on the era during which they were made, they all boast some similarities that set them apart from other types of furniture.

Bureaus of the late 1600s featured additional storage space and by the time a century rolled by it had developed into a desk as we would recognise it today with incorporated drawers. Developments continued apace, with more features being added over the years to come including secret drawers, slots, inkwells and pigeonholes.

Antique bureaus from the Jacobean and Elizabethan periods are hard to find today but if you are a lover of heritage furniture, there are certainly more Georgian era bureaus in circulation. These tend to be large and heavy pieces, while Victorian and Edwardian pieces were often aimed at ladies and were therefore more attractive and delicate.

Vintage Bureau Desks

Vintage bureau desks from the 20th century come in a range of shapes, sizes, colours and designs, however the key feature of all writing desks is the drop flap, which becomes a surface on which to write. Usually, this flap is supported with extending arms on either side, and the inner surface is usually inlaid with felt or leather.

Writing Desk Bureau

Inside the interior of the bureau, there is usually space for the storage of papers, pens and letters, and documents are often able to be hidden in a secret drawer under the writing surface.

One slightly different classic writing bureau design is the Cylinder bureau which has a roll up lid that can be locked. This style differs slightly in that its writing surface is fixed into position rather than dropping down.

Buying an antique or vintage writing bureau

While some furniture manufacturers today take their inspiration from traditional antique designs when creating contemporary mass-produced desks, the quality and durability cannot be matched when compared with a genuine vintage or antique piece.

Original writing bureaus have a unique character and aesthetic all of their own. Bringing heritage and classic appeal with them, they bring to mind their original owner every time they are used, helping to bring history back to life in a wonderfully personal way.

Find writing bureaus at Vinterior

Whether you love to write and are looking for a desk that can bring you new inspiration or whether you are searching for a beautifully formed piece of furniture that will add the perfect finishing touch to any room of your home, Vinterior’s range of writing bureaus is sure to have something to suit your needs. With options from a range of periods and in a host of styles and sizes, you’ll find the ideal piece to match your room.

Browse Vinterior today and find all the inspiration you need to create a unique and authentic home with a truly distinctive edge.

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