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| | |-+  "Antiqueness" is a subjective term
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: "Antiqueness" is a subjective term  ( 2882 )
sofadoc
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« : May 23, 2012, 08:34:31 PM »

I do my fair share of antiques, but I seldom know the true date and origin of a piece.
The customer that brought these 3 pieces in today was absolutely positive that they were purchased new from Sears & Roebuck in 1918:


We both agreed that at the time of purchase, these pieces were probably considered to be cheap reproductions. But yesterday's reproductions are today's antiques.....aren't they?

They are in very good shape for their age. They've obviously been recovered in the last 20 years. 
There was a time earlier in my career that I wouldn't have considered these pieces to qualify as antiques. But now, anything older than me qualifies ;)

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Mojo
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« #1 : May 23, 2012, 08:43:46 PM »

I believe that Ed maybe able to date those for you as he is the only one from this forum that was around back then. :)

I am a complete fool for antiques. We had a very large home in Bristol at one time with 14 rooms and I stuffed that place full of antiques I bought at estate and private sales. Unfortunately I never got to far into the furniture antiques. It was a sad day when I had to sell much of it when we downsized. I am still selling things that is in storage in Bristol. Our house now is no where near the size of the prior home we had.

I love antiques and really appreciate the way they were made back then. So much was handcrafted versus the mass produced assembly line crap of today. The craftsmen back then were amazing and the pride they took in each job astounding.

That furniture looks awesome.

Chris
kodydog
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« #2 : May 23, 2012, 08:50:47 PM »

Sofadoc those pieces have stood the test of time and that alone speaks volumes. Eastlake style furniture can be very high quality but also a lot of cheep reproductions were made. Some times its hard to tell until you take it apart. The important thing is the customer likes them and wants them restored.

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gene
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« #3 : May 23, 2012, 08:55:46 PM »

My first thought was 1960's reproduction. But I really can't tell by just one picture.

I hope you can get more info to confirm the date once you take it apart.

You can certainly charge a lot more for reupholstering a 1918 antique than you could for a 1960 reproduction.

I like the double welt cord on the front rail. (Not!) I haven't seen that before. Other than this, the previous upholsterer did a good job of lining up the fabric.

gene
« : May 23, 2012, 08:58:02 PM gene »

QUALITY DOES NOT COST, IT PAYS!
sofadoc
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« #4 : May 23, 2012, 09:21:16 PM »

My first thought was 1960's reproduction. But I really can't tell by just one picture.
I hope you can get more info to confirm the date once you take it apart.
I pulled the dust cover off the bottom of the settee to reveal synthetic webbing held by fine wire staples. It did appear there was one set of tack holes that used to hold jute webbing.
Normally, furniture that old has multiple layers of old fabric underneath. And the wood is perforated with tack/staple holes. I would've guessed 60's reproduction as well.

I didn't even notice the double gimp up front until Gene pointed it out. That is weird.

Here's one I did last month. The customer thought it was a true antique. It was entirely synthetic inside, and had prong buttons, and no-sag springs.

There used to be a factory nearby that churned these out by the 100's to sell at flea markets.
« : May 23, 2012, 09:36:58 PM sofadoc »

"Perfection is the greatest enemy of profitability" - Mark Cuban
baileyuph
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« #5 : May 24, 2012, 09:07:30 AM »

Question:  Is anything duplicated even after the first copy a reproduction?

Point is, there was a day when each craftsman had a style but usually never produced but one copy.  These days one has to perfect a process and ratchet up the efficiency of the process to just barely make a living.   ;)

Things change............ ;)

Doyle 
Mojo
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« #6 : May 24, 2012, 11:58:58 AM »

I must be living in a cave. I have never seen these reproductions. Anything I have ever seen like the furniture you posted have been in antique stores.

This is all new to me but then I am not a furniture guy nor a furniture shopper. :)

Chris
scottymc
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« #7 : May 24, 2012, 05:43:49 PM »

Chris, you might want too try, "Shaun O'Tooles Antique's , we make to order"
gene
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« #8 : May 24, 2012, 05:50:40 PM »

DB: I love looking at older pieces that have hand wood carving. You can see slight difference in the work that shows it was done by hand.

It's like hand blown glass. There's a story from many years ago where a glass company was getting a few air bubbles in their glass work. They would throw these back in as cullet. A salesman got the idea to sell them. He told people that glass blowers lives were shortened by the stress on their lungs and heart. The air bubble in the glass was an actual, visible, piece of that glass blowers' life that he put into making that glass piece. Sales went through the roof. And the rest is history.

gene

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byhammerandhand
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« #9 : May 24, 2012, 05:52:17 PM »

I did a moving claim a couple of years ago.   The family moved from a job in China (with a local multi-national).  A lot of the stuff was "ruistic" Chinese stuff with lots of cracks, dirt, and brass hardware.   The doors were all held closed with a brass clasp held with a brass pin.  Of course a number of the pins were lost in shipment.   One minute the lady is telling me these are valuable Chinese antiques and the next she's telling me that they know the guy that made these and he can get more pins for them. ::)

I refinished a desk a few years ago.   The owner had this brass plaque with complete provenance:   Made by A and given to B as a wedding gift.  B gave to oldest daughter C at her 18th birthday, and on and on.    Inside the frame was a factory stamp.   I did not have the nerve to tell the woman that unless great-grandpa A worked in a furniture factory in 1921, he did not make the piece.


Chris, you might want too try, "Shaun O'Tooles Antique's , we make to order"

Keith

"Opportunity is missed by most people because it is dressed in overalls and looks like work." Thomas A. Edison
baileyuph
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« #10 : May 24, 2012, 07:04:24 PM »

Quote
DB: I love looking at older pieces that have hand wood carving. You can see slight difference in the work that shows it was done by hand.


Yes!  Plus the quality of wood they had available is a site to see.


Doyle
mike802
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« #11 : May 24, 2012, 07:34:49 PM »

Some reproductions are hard to tell before striping some fabric off, but if the piece has never been refinished you can damp a rag with denatured alcohol and rub the finish in an inconspicuous spot.  If the rag turns a muddy brown color that is the finish dissolving and it is a good sign the piece "may" me authentic.  Antiques were often finished with shellac and denatured alcohol is a solvent for it.  I once had a lady call me up very upset after I delivered a reupholstered Chippendale settee, she was irate that I did not clean the wood before delivery.  She said "dont you people clean the wood when you reupholster?" I told her that no we dont usually do any work to the finish unless the customer specify s that they would like that type of work done.  She went on to say the wood was filthy and the more she scrubbed the more dirt came off.  I tried to explain to her as best I could that it was not dirt she was scrubbing off, but the finish!  If fell on deaf ears.

I build my furniture one piece at a time and do not fret to much about getting each piece exactly the same.  When I turn post for a bed I do each one individually and no two are the same, you will have to look close to notice the difference, but I feel it is what separates a hand made product from a cnc produced #3 off the line.  It called character and 100 years from now I hope some one notices and appreciates the effort.

"Nearly all men can stand adversity, but if you want to test a man's character, give him power" - Abraham Lincoln
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bobbin
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« #12 : May 25, 2012, 03:57:11 PM »

A lot of reproduction furniture is of very nice quality.  I have a set of 8 Chippendale inspired dining chairs that are clearly reproductions, but really very nicely constructed.  The seats are basically falling out of them, but there is horsehair padding with a muslin cover, jute padding tacked in place, and woven cambric.  And the slip seats are blocked in the corners and are secured to the frames with screws.  They came diguised under a few coats of white paint and I actually paid to have them stripped and reglued.  They're mahogany and I have 8 of them.  I have a dining table that is oak (under a couple of coats of white paint) and will extend to seat 12.  All the extension hardware is brass.  Sadly, I have only one of the original extension leaves. 

I love old furniture.  Mum was an inveterate auction/junk shop shopper (I used to hate auctions when I was a kid!) and my brother and I now have some very nice furniture because she had a "good eye" and was snapping up cheap furniture when the vogue at the time was the extreme opposite.  To this day, I love Victorian furniture... carving, curves, "over-the-top"... it's one reason I love drapery work... not mini-binds or tab-top curtains, but full pleated drapery panels and lushly  gathered Austrian shades.  Everything lavishly trimmed with fringe and tassels. 

But I digress.   ::)
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