Victorian antique furniture refers to pieces made during the reign of Queen Victoria (1837-1901), and includes both mass produced pieces and those hand crafted in small shops by designers such as Herter Brothers, Allen and Brother, Merklen Brothers, John Henry Belter, Alexander Roux and R.J. Horner.
Although some designers like George Hunzinger put labels or stamps on all their furniture, many did not, so attributing a Victorian piece conclusively can require lots of research. In terms of wood, walnut is generally inferior to rosewood, which was used on higher end pieces.
There are many, and very different, Victorian furniture styles. In fact, famous Victorian designer Charles Eastlake himself hated Rococo, which is mid 1850s Victorian. Here are some of the main Victorian styles:
1) Gothic Revival (circa 1830-1860). Think churches and you have a good feel for this furniture style - design elements such as arches, quatrefoils, trefoils, spires, and crockets.
2) Rococo Revival (c. 1840-1865). High-style furniture of French influence marked by use of naturalistic flora (flowers, shells) and fruit as well as C-scrolls and S-scrolls, and highly sinewy curved lines.. Early pieces may have used mahogany, but common Rococo often used Walnut, while the top-end leveraged Rosewood.
3) Renaissance Revival (c. 1860-1890). Reverses the feminine elegance of Rococo around the time of the Civil War by espousing masculine arches, cartouches, animal and human figures, inlaid panels, burl panels, gilt incising, and ormulu mounts. Subgenres include Egyptian Revival, Modern Gothic, and Neo-Grec.
4) Eastlake and Aesthetic Movement (c. 1880-1900). Moving away from the showy complicated designs of prior eras, this furniture has stylized natural elements (flowers, leaves), rectangular forms and severe lines, shallow incisings and turnings. On finer pieces, marquetry, inlay and veneering can also be found.
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Recent News: Victorian Furniture
Source: Google News
Barry Norman's grief at losing love and soulmateHam&High, November 21st
But the flat was gloomy and full of old Victorian furniture. It wasn't conducive to happy times. We weren't getting on at all well because I had never shared a flat with anyone before, I was 24 and thoughtless. It didn't occur to me I should go home as...Read more
Westfield to host Holly TourEvening Observer, November 17th
room and dining room all have fireplaces with hand-carved, imported Italian marble mantles. Elaborate chandeliers are found on both floors. On the second floor are six bedrooms with beautiful fabrics and wall coverings to accent the Victorian...Read more
Faith calendarHeraldNet, November 16th
SE in Startup. Handcrafted gifts, new and gently used Christmas decorations, bake sale, and lunch (11 a.m.-1 p.m.). Raffle tickets also will be sold at $1 each for a three-story doll house, complete with Victorian furniture, to benefit Lutheran...Read more
The Cabinetmaker and the Carver: Boston Furniture from Private CollectionsAFAnews, November 15th
7. Illustrating changes in collecting taste, this walnut library table of ca. 1860 was bequeathed to the MHS by Winsor and entered the institution in 1900. The MHS deaccessioned it in 1949, when Victorian furniture was perhaps at its nadir in terms of...Read more