Here’s something from G Plan we’ve never had before !
We’ve been buying and selling 1950s , 60s and 70s vintage G Plan for around 10 years and yet we still keep finding pieces we’ve never seen before . In the early 1960s G Plan introduced numerous pieces that were made for only a very short period of time . Some like the Limba series weren’t that nice and were commercial failures , others may have been too different for their time , but others like these pieces from their little known ” Living Wall system ” deserved to sell well and establish themselves in later catalogues .
The Living Wall system was made up of various cabinets and bookcases that could like this set stand alone , but there were also elements that were designed to stack on base units . It appears in a 1963 New Models Folder according to the G Plan High Wycombe archives , but isn’t shown in any of the many catalogues we have in our collection so we’re assuming that it was only made for a year or two . It certainly wasn’t cheap as the open bookcase section was priced at £16 10 shillings which in today’s money allowing for historic inflation is almost £350 . So the items in the set we have will be around £1200 in today’s money .
By the second half of the 1960s G Plan seemed to have settled down and designs usually were made for a number of years , so there no longer are any pieces from after 1966 that we have yet to see . However looking through the G Plan archives there are an amazing number of pieces that rarely come up for sale . There is a lovely teak box described as a ” Liquor Locker ” that we’ve yet to see anywhere , also some octagonal small tables that apparently had various tops ( teak , rosewood and laminates ) .
Richard Young designed a fabulous table with 3 legged chairs that at first sight look like a Hans Wegner design , we’ve yet to have one , but have seen 1 set a few years ago . It will have been a lot cheaper than the Wegner design it was based upon , but was probably too modern for G Plan buyers at the time . Some of Ib Kofod Larsen’s designs for G Plan were considered as too ” Danish ” for the British market so were never put into production unfortunately .
In 1964 G Plan introduced the Mainstream sideboard , table and chairs , but this never sold in any quantities whereas the Brasilia range of the same time was highly successful and made for 7 or 8 years before the Fresco range eventually replaced it completely .
The retailers back in the day would often decide what designs they thought were right and show them to best advantage . Naturally they usually had a good idea of what their customers were likely to buy and stock those ranges accordingly . Some customers would buy from the many coloured catalogues that G Plan produced over the years , so if pieces weren’t in the catalogues they had less chance of taking off . However we’ve yet to see the ” spider ” coffee table in any G Plan catalogue . It was actually the true one and only ” astro” rather than the circular and oval astro tables that commonly appear all over the country in fairly large numbers ! The ” spider ” astro although rare must have been relatively successful at the time as they do turn up fairly regularly .