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Learn to recognize the elements of different furniture styles. Consult a book with a upholstery guide like American Furniture: Check for the thickness of veneers.
Windsor chairs were not around before the Queen Anne furniture dating. Schwartz now out of print, but available through used booksellers for more clues about fabric designs used at different periods in furniture history. Don't be fooled by plywood! Other interior or home decorators tend not to take things so seriously but are still interested in items, history and authenticity.
Do the proportions and size appear to be correct? Get an expert opinion: Other brass hardware can be an indicator of age as well.
When trying to identify antique furniture, dedicated antique hunters search for beautifully preserved pieces, armed with pins, magnifying glasses, spirit levels and all sorts of testing equipment.
On the other hand, hand forged nails and screws with off-center slots and uneven threads can be taken from older furniture and used in a piece made yesterday.
Tips & Advice on Identifying Antique Furniture
Examine these parts carefully; slight differences in size or shape are not always easy to spot. American furniture styles have seen a significant number of style periods since the early Colonial era, with each period being to some degree influenced by the pieces being built in Europe generally England and France.
But there are a number of other factors to consider as well, including the tools that were used to craft a piece and what the individual components look like.
In other words, more vintage furniture is acquired for its beauty and function rather than the profit furniture dating of a piece. To determine age, consider the form and function, tool marks, construction techniques, and materials used in the furniture. You might think it's a modern material, but the Egyptian Pharaohs used laminated wood in furniture and it was used in England in the s. They weren't around before the 20th Century.
What can I do to prevent this in the future?
Seldom does one clue provide confirmation of anything. Becoming knowledgeable about antique furniture takes research, even if you are focusing on only one aspect of this wide-ranging subject. If the wood shows circular or arc-shaped marks, it was cut by a circular saw, not in use until about The backs of this type of hardware were often left with the impression of the furniture dating while the surfaces were polished.
Like Us on Facebook. Three-ply plywood as we know it today was made in Chrome and Formica on your furniture? Handmade dovetails almost always indicate a piece made before If you can locate tool marks on a piece of exposed wood, you might have some clues to follow.
Tips for Dating Old Pieces Made in America
Fake, Fraud, or Genuine? What is the furniture made of?
Click for information on the Next Estate Sale. Looking at the joinery, or the way a piece of antique furniture is put together, will provide many clues that help in determining the age.
Mortise and tenon joints were also used in the 18th and early 19th Centuries. More than likely, you will discover that you own a later revival piece although it's awfully fun to dream big when you begin your research.
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