When you imagine a typical floorboard showroom you probably don’t envisage a space filled with antique furniture, candelabras, crystal chandeliers, 18th century clocks, a cast iron spiral staircase and a handmade piano bar that is actually built into and around a working piano.
“I went to the showroom and was blown away by the artistry, craftsmanship
and range of flooring options. It was more like an art gallery than a flooring company.” Paul Carpenter – Creative Director, Writer, Illustrator.
John Fredriksson, of Antique Floors and French Country Plank, is the craftsman, designer and artisan behind this stunning bespoke gemlike setting in the middle of Leichardt that has become the go to place for interior designers & architects to source their custom made floors.
Before arriving in Australia in 1986 John was born and lived in Lulea, a coastal town in the north east of Sweden where he discovered his passion for carpentry and timber at an early age inspired by generations of Fredriksson woodworkers.
John founded Antique Floors in 1996 and sources his timber from all over the world – from certified sustainable new French Oak to locally sourced dismantled heritage buildings, wool-sheds and even an old Coogee Monastery.
The timber is then cut to size, sanded and restored with natural oils to create either a classic or contemporary timber flooring according to your desire.
Inspired primarily by traditional European designs and patterns his exquisite showroom in Leichardt showcases his unique flooring and is embellished with an eclectic mix of classical objet d’art (which is also all for sale) to help inspire any room or commercial space.
When asked ‘why use recycled timber?’ John replied ‘It has character. Each piece is unique with its own distinctive marks and idiosyncrasies. Each piece has a story to tell’.
A man of few words John’s passion for craftsmanship and timber permeates through his work which speaks for itself and the stories it has to tell are steeped in history and old world charm.
The two companies, Antique Floors and French Country Plank, offer two distinctive differences. The first is idealistically John’s creative release, his passion, his raison d’être and it comes at a premium. The second is top of the range, wide board European oak finished with natural oil in Australia.
Not so deep down beneath that calm and collected air that is inherent in his Swedish culture you get a sense that John is busting at the seams to start work on his next project and, as with all creative people, is eager to impress with his exquisite work.