How to Determine the Age of Antique Furniture
It is sometimes called a knurl toe. Their furniture was practical and sturdy. Glues of the period sometimes weakened. Known as Empire, it had an emphasis on the classical world of Greece, Egypt and other ancient European influences.
Legs are usually cabriole or have substantial turned profiles. Legs tend to be curved to scrolled or cloven hoof feet. The monopodium foot also appears on sofas, chairs and case pieces. Moving into the s, maple and cherry showed up in fine furniture manufacture quite often.
- This foot type has been popular almost continuously, in variations, since it was introduced in the s.
- Carved decoration in the form of scallop shells, leaves and flowers, particularly roses, and acanthus further add to the ornamentation of this style of furniture.
- It is sometimes called a French bracket foot, in fact.
- Hand made screws and nails were relatively expensive and could rust and expand, sometimes cracking the wood they secured.
- American furniture manufacturers were enthusiastic about this style, since it was so easy to adapt for mass production.
- Lines tend to be sweeping, undulating curves.
From the s up until the Eastlake period in the s, brass hardware fell out of favor in furniture manufacture and was sparsely used. Manufacturers have been stamping their wares for centuries. Dovetails have great strength, holding pieces of wood in perfect alignment over long periods of time.
Some popular antiques are quite well documented and may be tied to a specific time period in history making an age determination quite simple. When trying to identify antique furniture, dedicated antique hunters search for beautifully preserved pieces, armed with pins, magnifying glasses, spirit levels and all sorts of testing equipment. But, it is important to determine which type of wood is most prevalent in your antique to help determine the age.
One exception to this is known as the Spanish foot, which flares to a scroll. Legs and feet of this form are cabriole or scrolling. The presence of brass hardware at all also tells a tale. Pennsylvania cabinetmakers used Marlborough feet, responses to online dating while other regions favored ogee bracket feet.
A primer on furniture styles
The next technological development in joinery was again American. It is characterized by elements reminiscent of Greek architecture, such as pilasters, flutes, column, acanthus, foliate scrolls, Greek key motifs and anthemion high-relief carving. As the dovetail joint evolved through the last one hundred thirty years, it becomes a clue for the age and authenticity of antique furniture. But, many of the original wood components may have been refinished leaving original paint deep in the wood's pores.
Identifying Antique Furniture Foot Styles
Printed Furniture Value Guides
Real lacquer changes color after time. Several good books covering early American furniture history are available online or at local bookstores. In other words, more vintage furniture is acquired for its beauty and function rather than the profit potential of a piece. Elizabethan, This sub-category of the Victorian era is probably the most feminine-influenced style.
It was especially popular, with regional variations, in Irish and Philadelphia furniture. Use them as a starting point and one possible indicator of age rather than making a conclusion based only on the foot style. Showroom - Frequently Asked Questions.
Tips for Dating Old Pieces Made in America
Antique furnishings can tell a story one that may only exist in the imagination of the lucky person acquiring the piece. If it has only a few dovetail joints, with pins narrower than the dovetails, then the joint was made by hand. Typically, insurance companies an item will require you to get a formal written appraisal from a professional appraiser. WorthPoint specializes in recent sales of specific items of antique furniture and art. Art Nouveau, Just as the Art Nouveau period is known for women with long hair, flowers and curves, so is Art Nouveau furniture.
Sometimes it is referenced as a console leg. It is not a solid carved piece but created by applying pieces of wood to the bottom of a square, tapered leg. Finishes were natural, dating aylesbury fumed or painted.
Identifying Antique Furniture Foot Styles
Inlaid bands and lines were also popular and often used in combination with other inlay. The tips were blunt in these oldest screws, and each one was unique. French Restoration, coffee bagel dating This is the first sub-category of the Victoria era.
Because the architectural style of the Empire period used big, open rooms, the sofa was now allowed to be in the center of the room, with a table behind it. Chair backs tend to be high and narrow, having a slight back tilt. Some cast-iron elements can be found on furniture from this period, especially if it was cast as scrolls. Walnut was popular around the s. Several new forms of tables also came into being, especially the sofa table.
How to Date Furniture by Casters
- These were cut with a jig or pattern, and an apprentice could create a very well fitting and attractive joint.
- The French held it in higher esteem.
- Honing your wood identification skills can really pay off in this area.
Shapes of furniture from this style tend to be more rectangular. Furniture of this time was made from more expensive woods, such as ebony or rosewood. As you examine the piece, sleuth for clues that support your initial theory that you have a piece of authentic period furniture. Combining this dating process with several other techniques will help you make an accurate age determination. This over-view of the dovetailing techniques should easily help identification and dating of most furniture from the last years.
Identifying Antique Furniture
Some inlay of natural materials was used, such as silver, copper and abalone shells. In addition to the insurance value for your furniture, there are several kinds of values you may see when you perform lookups. The cocktail table first enters the furniture scene during this period.
The type of dovetailed joint, especially in drawers, reveals much about furniture construction and dating. Turnings are baluster-shaped and the use of C-scrolls was quite common. Some pieces, like chairs, may have matching dolphin arms and feet. This era saw the wide usage of turned moldings and dark woods, but this time stained to imitate ebony and lacquer. The slow and laborious crafting and carving, one piece at a time, age dating range by a master woodworker was not suited to the new mass market.
This is sometimes called a drake foot. These are sometimes referenced as tulip feet. For thousands of years, a dovetail joint was created by a skilled cabinetmaker using small, precision saws and wood chisels. It wasn't until this time that sophisticated jigs and cutters were built to automate this process.