I purchased these 6 dining chairs for $35 today. 2 of the chairs have arms. All are stamped with Styled by Phoenix on the bottom as shown in the picture. Can you tell me how old these chairs are and where they might have been made? The finish shows wear and the seats need to be re-covered, but the chairs seem very tight and sturdy. I am trying to decide whether they are worth refinishing as some extra dining chairs for myself or whether to pass them on to my daughter with just re-covering to be used in her college student rental home next year. I don't know if refinishing would be an easy job to do myself or one to be hired out. I have re-covered our other dining chairs so that part is not a problem. Thanks in advance for your valuable time and information!
Answer there were three or four phoenix furniture companies operating. the more prominent called the phoenix furniture company; 1872-1953. their label has the phoenix facing left with flames underneath. as with all companies there were purchases and moves and even after erwin bought it with his partners the phoenix label was continued. i believe these chairs to be from that company in its later years-towards their last 20 years of operation. the information in wilkecollecting pages is not correct and sparse at best. i mention this so you will not be led astray.
you alone have to decide if you want them to be refinished and whether or not to invest the money. it will cost more to have them refinished that they will sell for in a retail setting but that to me is not an important factor. i recommend cleaning and polishing them with toluene free briwax paste furniture wax in a brown color. then decide from there if more is required. there are aeresol toners available that help to darken or even colors. not knowing your experience with these things i hesitate going further at this point.
i charge about 200 per chair to refinish knowing that some gluing is required. you may be surprised and happy at what the wax will do when comparing 18$ in wax to 200 per chair.
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Thanks, Robert, for your quick response. I am thrilled you have given me a less expensive option to try and improve the beauty of these chairs. Thanks, too, for the info on their origin and age. Your input is greatly appreciated!
Regarding American antique, vintage, and collectible furniture I can help with wood identification, styles, age, periods, historical coatings, materials, techniques, repair, restoration, refinishing.
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I have been in the antiques furniture and restoration business and in the sales of American antique furniture for 40+ years and have continued my education in the trade attending workshops and seminars through several organizations.
Organizations Professional Refinishers Groop, Int., AIC, Antiques Dealers Association
Education/Credentials BA Florida State University
BA University of West Florida 1971