Category Archives: Antique Furniture

Early walnut – “honey” coloured

Walnut was the most popular cabinet timber during the first quarter of the 18th century. Much prized by cabinetmakers for its strength and decorative figure, “Juglans Regia” or English walnut, was not in fact native to England, but was introduced from Europe, possibly by the Romans. The “curl” figure is found where branches or roots …

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Upholstered furniture – age equals quality

When you look underneath the upholstery, antique sofas and chairs could not be more different from modern pieces. A new sofa, even from a high quality supplier, will be constructed of chipboard, stapled together and covered in foam. They are not built to last. A piece such as this beautiful maple wood setee, dating from …

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Glazed Bookcases – Invented by Pepys?

Amongst new stock this month is this beautiful mahogany glazed bookcase. Dating from about 1810, it is a typical Regency piece in the quality of its construction: the timber is dense, with a wonderful figure, and all the mouldings are crisply executed. The brass locks and hinges are also top quality. Unusually for a bookcase …

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Why was fruitwood used in cabinet making?

During the 18th and 19th centuries fruitwood was widely used for the construction of vernacular or “country” furniture in England. The most commonly used fruitwood was the timber from the native or wild cherry, Prunus avium, which produced a decent sized trunk and fine, wide planks. The wood is of a close, firm texture and …

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What Is Campaign Furniture?

Amongst new stock this week is this lovely 19th century mahogany chest of drawers. Dating from about 1825, it is a particularly fine example of campaign furniture, designed to be packed and carried on the march during military campaigns. The officers of the British army who bought and commissioned campaign furniture came from the upper …

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Mahogany side table by Gillows

This fine quality mahogany side table, dating from about 1840, is stamped ‘Gillows’. Gillows of Lancaster was established by Robert Gillow in 1728 and continued by his two sons. They were a unique firm: no other cabinet makers were in business for so long a period, and no other provincial firms had a showroom and …

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Dutch Marquetry Table

This demi-lune console table is a particularly good example of the fine, early Dutch marquetry from about 1780, with its foliate scrolls, butterflies and urns. Marquetry is the method of decorating the surface of furniture with a panel of veneers. The sheets of veneer are temporarily glued together into a “pack”, and cut with a …

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Georgian hoof foot drop leaf table

This lovely 18th century mahogany drop leaf dining table that has just come into the showroom is exceptional in design and quality. The drop leaf style of table developed from the more cumbersome gateleg dining table during the second quarter of the 18th century. This example dates from about 1740 and is made from Cuban …

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New Stock of Antique Furniture

Amongst new stock this week is this lovely pair of walnut, cabriole leg sofas. As with all antique furniture, pairs are particularly hard to find, and hold intrinsically more than double the value of a single item. These date from about 1880, and are typical of that period in various ways; the Victorians particularly admired …

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