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Antique chairs have a distinctive appearance, even when compared to exact replicas, especially when you look at the results of long use and age on the antique chair. Wood shrinks with time, loosening joints, and use often wears hand carvings and embellishments smooth. To learn how to identify antique chair styles, start by determining the design period to which the chair belongs or comparing the chair to style charts in books or online. Find the period to which the antique chair belongs by evaluating its shape and comparing it to a chart or guide in a book or online. Each antique style has specific identifying features, often named after the reigning monarch of the time, or for the designer who created the style, such as Thomas Chippendale, Thomas Sheraton or George Hepplewhite. In America, Windsor chairs, named for the 18th-century town in England that first created the style, supported the backside of the country's forefathers during the signing of the Declaration of Independence. Examine antique chairs to determine the woods used to build the chair, a key style indicator.

This is a type of turned foot, consisting of a rounded saucer-shaped top with larger turning in the middle that then narrows to a smaller turned end.

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The overall silhouette resembles that of a spinning top or 'toupie' in French. Sometimes referred to as a spool foot.

Nov 20,   William and Mary, The style is named for the English King William of Orange and his consort, Mary. New colonists in America brought their English furniture traditions with them and tried to translate these styles using native woods. Their furniture was practical and sturdy. Lines of this furniture style tend to be crisp, while. If you are trying to determine the age of a piece of American antique furniture, it will require investigative susanneill.com 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. Furniture casters are viewed as a convenience that helps us move furniture so we can vacuum or rearrange the room. Yet, casters sometimes had more to do with lighting than housekeeping or design. Casters were fit on the legs of desks to allow the desk to be moved around the room to capture the changing sunlight.

Short and squat examples usually decorate heavy case pieces while more slender examples can be used on chairs as shown. Dating from the second half of the 17th century, the toupie foot is often associated with Louis XIV styles. One of the oldest foot styles-dating from the Middle Ages-in which a vertical post is placed in the middle of a horizontal piece, forming the shape of a T.

Gustav Stickley's admiration for plain, "honest" pieces led him to design several tables with sturdy trestle feet.

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This is sometimes called a drake foot. Characteristic of 18th-century design, it most often appears in Queen Anne-style and early Chippendale-style pieces, especially chairs and footstools.

How to Date Furniture by Casters

It was especially popular, with regional variations, in Irish and Philadelphia furniture. Chairs with exaggerated proportions, winged splats, shell motifs, and trifid feet were all characteristic of the sophisticated furniture made in colonial Philadelphia.

Identifying antique furniture feet can help determine the approximate age of a piece, along with the period in which it was made, helping you research and value antique pieces more skillfully. Listed below are foot styles developed in Europe and the United States from the Renaissance to the Empire periods.

This is a rounded, turned furniture foot style in a variation of the bun foot. It is bulb-shaped with a slender neck, usually has a ring on top, and bulges outward before tapering down into a round collar or base.

These are sometimes referenced as tulip feet. It is sometimes called a knurl toe. Developed in the late 17th century, this style is often associated with Louis XV, Georgian, and other Rococo styles.

Special thanks go out to contributing writer Troy Segal for her assistance with this article.

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Arrow Foot. Ball Foot. Ball and Claw Foot.

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Block Foot. Continue to 5 of 20 below.

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Bracket Foot. Bun Foot.

Antique chairs have a distinctive appearance, even when compared to exact replicas, especially when you look at the results of long use and age on the antique chair. Wood shrinks with time, loosening joints, and use often wears hand carvings and embellishments smooth. To learn how to identify antique chair styles, start by determining the. One of the best ways to identify an antique style is by observing the piece's legs and feet. Early 17th-century furniture typically featured bun- or ball-style feet. Ball- and claw-style feet. New Listing Louis XVI Gold Table Circa $ shipping. Ending Feb 22 at PM PST. Style: Louis XVI Material: Unknown. Inlaid Mahogany Antique Card Games Table w/RARE Double SWING RAILS. $ shipping. Ending Feb 19 at AM PST. Type: Game Table Style: Federal. Victorian Paper Mache Tilt Table With Inlaid Mother Of.

Cylindrical Foot. Dolphin Foot.

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Continue to 9 of 20 below. A handcrafted furniture piece does not set it in time as an antique. Furniture is still being crafted by hand today.

However, machine-made evidence does give you a better picture of when the piece of furniture could not be from.


It can be difficult distinguishing the type of wood or finish used on a furniture piece, but these are important clues. Certain types of woods were favored during different furniture periods. For example, oak was primarily used in furniture made prior to Aftermahogany and walnut were very popular.

Dating antique furniture legs

Moving into the s, maple and cherry showed up in fine furniture manufacture quite often. Many Victorian furniture manufacturers used mahogany and rosewood through the late s.

Then, aroun oak became popular again.

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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.

A wide variety of materials and fabric designs were favored for upholstery during different periods.

Furniture Styles & Types Guide

Schwartz is an upholstery guide that can help you decipher the styles that align with furniture periods.

Closely review the screws.

Antique Chair Wood Types

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. Inspect the casters to see if they are made from wood and held in place by iron.

Wood casters held by iron plates might indicate the Georgian Period from to Determine if the casters are made from cast iron instead of wood.

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This would indicate a later Georgian period, from to Check to see if the caster is brass with a laminated leather caster. This style could indicate the Georgian period from to

The use of hand tools and hand-cut dovetails is now the province of hobbyists and a few small shops creating authentic replicas of antique furniture. This over-view of the dovetailing techniques should easily help identification and dating of most furniture from the last years. Jan 05,   The video above provides a great introduction to dating antique furniture and what areas should be examined. Take note of the shape of the screws used to hold the furniture susanneill.com: Timothy Dahl. Determining the age of antique furniture is the first step in establishing a proper valuation, as well as verifying that the piece is indeed an authentic furnishing from the era in question. There is some detective work to be done if you want to really ensure that the antique is real, and a qualified inspector should be hired if you're spending.

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2 thoughts on “Dating antique furniture legs

  1. I am sorry, that I interfere, but, in my opinion, there is other way of the decision of a question.

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