What is thought to be an antique dresser may be something else. Fakes exist, with dealers trying to make money from such furniture. Become aware of what to look for, and develop a trained eye. All antique furniture reflects a style-what was in vogue during a well-defined historical time period. Make a checklist of what to look for if you are in the market for an antique dresser.
It was also free, in societies where hand-forged screws or nails were luxuries that might rust, expand and split your bedpost, tabletop or chest of drawers. Cabinetmakers carefully chiseled the "pins" to fit smoothly and snugly into the "tails," but they also slicked some glue in the joint before fitting the two pieces of wood together.
An analysis of glue remnants could be the key to precisely defining the age of a hand-cut dovetailed antique.
Antique furniture is usually named by the periods of the British Monarchy in which it was made. Here is a list of the dates - Dates Antique Chest of Drawers. If rough surfaces, plane scrapes, and tool marks are evident inside the piece of furniture, or on the back or bottom surfaces, you're probably looking at a pre model. This is one of the easiest ways to provide a fairly accurate date stamp to any antique. Dec 21, Technically, an antique is a piece of furniture with special value because of its age, particularly those pieces embellished with fine artistry. The age factor is subjective: general antique stores label objects 50 years or older as antiques. Fine antique dealers consider objects years and older to be antique.
Benna Crawford has been a journalist and New York-based writer since Crawford has a degree in theater, is a certified Prana Yoga instructor, and writes about fitness, performing and decorative arts, culture, sports, business and education. By Benna Crawford.
Dating antique chest of drawers
The Pharaoh's Footstool Egyptian pharaohs were buried with fine furnishings and chests of valuables and rare spices to accompany them to the afterlife. Telltale Dovetail Detail Woodworkers cut dovetail joints in the latter part of the 17th century in England, using small delicate saws and wood chisels. American Aberration American woodworkers played around with the ancient dovetailing concept and invented a version of their own in Sticky Stuff The strength of the joint is the reason for its long popularity.
Photo Credits. About the Author. Though probably originating in France, Cheverets further developed in England in the latter half of the 18th century, representing the vogue for light, portable furniture. They continued to be popular into the Regency period, until the s.
Many also have small front drawers, cubbyholes, hidden compartments released by a knob in one of the drawers, or pop-up galleries. Its name derives from the client it was made for, a Captain Davenport.
Because of this military connection, and the desk's compact size and multiple compartments, furniture historians theorize the piece was originally intended to be used on a ship, or on military campaigns.
They are sometimes referenced, in fact, as a ship captain's desk. Since then it's been incorporated into many different desk styles, including the Butler's desk pictured.
This antique desk style, popular from the late s through the early s, is said to have originated in England.
Two-sided desks such as these were often used by bankers who wished to work together for convenience. They are the same on each side allowing individuals to face one another.
Since they are essentially office furniture, they are usually heavy and well-made from quality woods such as mahogany or oak. Some examples have leather tops as well.
Dovetails are interlocking carved wood joints used in cabinetry to connect two pieces of wood - drawer fronts and sides, cabinet or cupboard corners. The technique produces a sturdy, long-lasting. Inspect the drawers. Dresser drawers of the early 18th century moved on runners that fit into a grove about halfway up the side of the drawers. One or two nails in the back were used to keep a drawer from rattling. Dovetailing can appear at the front of the drawers. On more elegant pieces, dovetailing is finer. May 09, Types of Handles Used on Antique Furniture throughout history. Around the 's the turned wooden knob came into use and by the time the Victorian period had set in, most drawer furniture had wooden knobs of varied simplicity or complication.
Slant-front desks have evolved over time, with the first examples having hinges at the top. Many different types and styles have been made with slanted tops since then, including a number of those shown with this feature. Then, aroun oak became popular again.
The type of wood used is not an exact indicator of age, but when you tie in the other factors like style and construction technique, you start to get a better idea of the date of the piece. Original upholstery materials like silk, wool, or cotton were spun and woven into a variety of damasks, satins, and brocades with many different patterns.
As the dovetail joint evolved through the last one hundred thirty years, it becomes a clue for the age and authenticity of antique furniture. The type of dovetailed joint, especially in drawers, reveals much about furniture construction and dating. If you are trying to determine the age of a piece of American antique furniture, it will require investigative work. Look closely at the the different elements that make the piece of furniture. Examine the level of work that went into the furniture from the joinery, finishing, knobs, and more. A pear drop handle will suggest the chest will be William and Mary or Queen Anne period whereas a swan neck handle would be found on pieces that post date A Queen Anne period walnut cabinet on chest with original pear drop handles. Drawer mouldings will also give an indication of the age of the chest.
A wide variety of materials and fabric designs were favored for upholstery during different periods. Schwartz is an upholstery guide that can help you decipher the styles that align with furniture periods. Closely review the screws.
Clues to Dating Antiques #3
Screws were not made completely by machine until So if you find a furniture item using screws that have completely rounded shafts, pointed ends, and perfectly finished heads with matching cuts much like a screw you would purchase todaythe piece likely dates to the midth century or later. Screws made from about through the mids were partially machine-made giving the threading a more even appearance.
But the heads were still finished with hacksaws to add the groove to fit a screwdriver, so no two are exactly alike.
The first screws were crafted during the s by blacksmiths using square nail stock that was heated and pounded until it was somewhat round. The tips were blunt and each one was unique.
If you find these hand-finished screws in furniture, investigate other cts of the pieces to see if they appear to match the screws in age. One similarly-dated element is brass hardware.
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Early 18th-century hardware was cast from molten brass using molds made of sand. This hardware often has inclusions or marks left behind by grains of sand or odd colors from impurities.
The backs of the hardware were often left with these pockmarks, while the outward-facing surfaces were polished.