• In the Hot Seat: Is Your Antique Windsor a Fake? While researching her book, "Killer Stuff and Tons of Money," Maureen Stanton came across all sorts of characters. For years, she shadowed her antiques-dealer friend she calls “Curt Avery,” and he gave her an insider’s view of what goes on behind-the-scenes in the antiques world—including at Brimfield Antiques Show in Massachusetts, one of the largest flea markets in the United States. Most of the…
  • Oak Shaving Stand Fit For a Governor I love old things, which is why I’ ve been going to garage sales, flea markets, and auctions for 20 years or so. One day a friend and I were driving through Brownsburg, Indiana, and saw a guy putting out a “For Sale” sign in front of a big, beautiful house. I fell in love with it, and a little over a month later it was mine. I immediately began restoring it to its original 1920s style. One of m…
  • For the Love of Danish Modern Furniture I grew up with antiques, mostly English, and I've lived around the world and traveled a lot as well. Art had always been a passion of mine. Then I discovered furniture when I was living in Switzerland. I saw a set of Danish Modern chairs by a designer and architect named Ole Wanscher at a show. That was in the early '90s before the market for these things really started taking off, before anybody …
  • The International Influences of Buffalo Furniture About 11 years ago, my wife and I went on some architectural tours. We joined the organization that sponsored the tours, and I volunteered to be the Webmaster for them. I decided to take a few photographs to illustrate the tours, and realized it would also be good to describe some of the architecture, so I started an architectural dictionary. Then I decided it would be useful to have some Buffalo …
  • Eames, Nelson, and the Mid-Century Modern Aesthetic As a teenager, I collected everything from vintage bicycles to Coca-Cola to Victorian stuff. Once I realized some of this stuff contained concepts of art and design, I started looking for vintage objects that also represented art or design movements that could hold my interest. I ran across Art Nouveau and then Art Deco and then Arts and Crafts and then streamline modern. Visually it all led up to…
  • John Werry Explains How To Appreciate Victorian Furniture How did I get started collecting Victorian Furniture? Antiques is in my genes, my mother's family were longtime antiquers and lived in a house built in the 18th Century. But it really hit me about five years ago. We'd go furniture shopping and come out of the store not liking anything, empty handed. We didn't like the quality or the design of today's furniture, and we were getting tired of our coo…
  • Hepplewhite Combined Straight Lines and Bold Curves Great as was the impact of the Hepplewhite style on furniture design in both Great Britain and America during the last 15 or 20 years of the 18th Century, the man whose family name it bears remains little more than a shadow. Despite more than a half century of research scarcely a half dozen documented facts have been uncovered. He was born in provincial England, Durham and Lancaster both cl…
  • Philadelphia Chippendale at Its Best in the Collections of the Philadelphia Museum Thomas Chippendale lived in the London of great artists whose names are indelibly associated with their work — Garrick and the theater, Gainsborough and portraiture, Johnson and his dictionary, to mention but a few. A member of the Society of Arts, Chippendale (1718-79) had a large shop in St. Martin's Lane, London, where he designed and made furniture for some of the great mansions of England. He…
  • Furniture Masterpieces by Jacob Bachman For a considerable number of years, the discriminating antiques collectors of Lancaster, Pennsylvania, have noted the occasional appearance of a secretary desk, secretary bookcase, tea table, bow-front corner cupboard, or tall-case clock of very fine workmanship and quite unusual carving. These pieces were found only in and around Lancaster and, in the form of tall case clocks, seem to have been m…
  • Chippendale Designs as Reflected in English and American Furniture For over a generation there has been growing contention about Thomas Chippendale and the English and American furniture of his period. Articles by the score and books by the half dozen have been written. The end is not yet, nor will it be so long as collectors are so captivated by structural sincerity and ornamental beauty that they must possess authentic examples of Chippendale furniture as produ…
  • Antique Furniture with Double Uses “Functional design.” For better than a decade this phrase has been worked and over-worked. Architects, production executives and writers of advertising have used it consistently to arrest attention and have done this with such impact that many have come to consider it as one of the marvels of the l9th Century. But functional design is nothing new. Take furniture. The craftsmen in both Ameri…
  • The Grace of Queen Anne Furniture Whole books, and many of them, have been written about American furniture of various periods and special localities but one of the most charming styles has had scant attention. This bears the name of Queen Anne, England's last Stuart monarch. There this furniture period began with her accession to the throne, in 1702, and continued after her death, in 1714, with decreasing influences throug…
  • The Sandersons and Salem Furniture Part I: For at least thirty years students of American craftsmanship have realized that a large quantity of fine Hepplewhite and Sheraton furniture with distinct characteristics of design was made at Salem, Massachusetts, during the late 18th and early 19th Centuries. But the reputation of Samuel McIntire as wood carver, architect, and possibly, at times, a maker of furniture has so dominated t…
  • Chester County Cabinetmakers The scope covered by the work of Chester County, Pa., cabinetmakers was literally from the cradle to the coffin. The daybooks are filled with orders for these two articles, which with that other symbol of man's recumbency, the bed, seem to have been the most popular furniture of the day. In between, of course, were the various articles which a man used and from which he drew a large measure…
  • Birch, the Forgotten Wood of Cabinetmakers Many qualities have gone into the making of the much discussed "American way" but one of the greatest seems to have been ingenuity. Old-fashioned terms for it were faculty, sconce, and horse sense, but all added up to the same thing: an ability to take the thing or idea at hand and turn it to good account. Nowhere was this more apparent than with Early American cabinetmakers. They were rece…
  • George Washington and His Presidential Furniture "Great rejoicing in New York on the arrival of General Washington. Previous to his coming, Uncle Walter's house in Cherry Street was taken for him and every room furnished in the most elegant manner. Aunt Osgood and Lady Duer had the whole management of it. I went the morning before the General's arrival to look at it. The best of furniture in every room, and the greatest quantity of plate and chi…