A topic that invariably generates a lot of heat and a lot less light is the question of what qualifies as an antique. The use of the word itself is a little odd in that it is one of the few words we use to describe an object that doesn’t have anything to do with the physical characteristics of the object.
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Beds are of great interest to most people. We spend more time in bed than we do anywhere else, except maybe at work, so where we spend roughly one-third of our lives should be of great interest. In Colonial America, mobility was a key factor in bed design. America has been a nation on the move since before it was a nation, so a bed that could be disassembled, transported by wagon or boat and reassembled was a valuable asset. Read More +
Furniture Detective: One of the first things to be looked at when trying to determine the age of a piece of older or antique furniture is the type of joinery used in the construction of the piece. Knowing the history of the technology of various periods goes a long way toward explaining clues about the age of furniture and none is more important (or accessible) than the type of joint used to secure a drawer. Read More +
What do antique funiture dealers mean when they call something a fake, a reproduction or a revival? The study of antique furniture has its own very specialized language that permeates all the nooks and crannies of the field, whether it be collecting, buying and selling, restoration or just vicarious interest. Three terms often heard loosely bandied about the trade are “fake,” “reproduction” and “revival.” Each has its meaning in the real world and each has its own special meaning in the world of antiques. Read More +
"I have an antique rocking chair I acquired at auction for a very reasonable price because the bottom is falling out of it. The canvas looking straps that hold in the sprigs are rotten and broken. I would just take them off but it looks like the springs inside are sewn to the straps. Can I replace them without reupholstering the entire chair?" Read More +
Like America itself, the impetus for one of the country’s most influential lifestyles came from England. The great American tradition of Arts and Crafts furniture, pottery, art, architecture and metal work began with the discontent of a young, independently wealthy Englishman named William Morris (1834 – 1896).
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Early 20th century furniture made in America developed its own unique style, loosely known as Colonial Revival. It turns out that the wood most frequently used in American furniture in the first half of the 20th century was gum, also known as sweet gum, red gum, hazel pine, sap gum, satin walnut and copalm balsam. Read More +
There is a body of erroneous wisdom about furniture that somehow manages to survive and even evolve from generation to generation, like an infection, in spite of repeated applications of the antibiotic — the facts. Read More +
Tall bookcase secretaries are very impressive — not to mention expensive — especially if they are old and in great condition. The same goes for those wonderful old chest on chests with lots of drawers and a great provenance. But how can you tell if the piece is “right” and not assembled from various parts of different articles? Read More +
DELAWARE, Ohio — Are you attracted by the glamour of one of America’s earliest and grandest mansions, the acumen of pioneering businessmen, and the beauty of finely executed oil paintings? If yes, Garth’s Auctioneers & Appraisers of Delaware, Ohio, has the perfect items for you Read More +