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Antique Furniture/Hepplewhite period? chair with inlay


Chair Full View
Chair Full View  

Chair Decorative Inlay Middle
Chair Decorative Inlay  
Hello Mr. Klein, We purchased at auction a petite (35h, 16w, 16d) side chair attributed to the Hepplewhite period and described as Rosewood with intricate inlay, circa 1800. The back and seat cushions are missing. Chair is otherwise in fairly good condition with some minor string inlay loss. Decorative inlay appears to be ivory. We are trying to confirm the period, style, wood species, use of ivory, and determine the estimated value. If this cannot be assessed from the photos, then we would appreciate suggestions on where to research further as we have not been able to spot a similar chair anywhere online. Also, would it be better with respect to the value to leave the chair untouched or to replace the missing cushions? Thanks very much for your assistance! NOTE: Additional photos are being sent by email.

good picture of the fan design, man that is some wonderful work.  The chair is fabulous.  I have to know what you paid, if you dont mind and which auction house.

i think not a hepplewhite period chair depending on what the definition of 'period' is held to be.  He died in the late 1760s and his wife published the design book about 10 years later.  His 'period' is considered, and i think incorrectly so, from 1790-1810.  Usually a period named of a particular person is considered to be while they were living and producing, not very accurate since shops continued after a founder and namesakes death.

It is all very subjective.  One must consider how the piece is made and remember too, the construction methods, tools, materials and other factors.  To me whether or not it is 'of the period' or not, is of no importance.  It would not add intrinsic value, but perhaps associative value.  If an object could be ascertained to be made by or in the shop of a particular person that is wonderful and would carry all sorts of positives.  Attributes are mere opinions, hopefully based on research, knowledge and fact.

I would welcome more pictures.  Needing to see the cut marks and saw marks on the inside and underneath of the seat rails.  Same for the corner glue blocks inside the seat rail.  and the heads of any of the older screws.  Ideally the whole screw but i would not have to to take one out as tit can be troublesome.  

Also, if there is a place where we can see how the cross pieces fit into the upright elements it would help.  They should be morticed rather than a round dowel on a chair of this age.  I place the chair around 1840/50 but would like to see more photos to verify.

No doubt of this be a fine piece and for you to have seen it speaks highly of your eye and tastes.

standing by for more photos to my email...

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robert klein


Regarding American antique, vintage, and collectible furniture I can help with wood identification, styles, age, periods, historical coatings, materials, techniques, repair, restoration, refinishing. Please read instructions for posting.


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.

Professional Refinishers Groop, Int., AIC, Antiques Dealers Association

BA Florida State University BA University of West Florida 1971

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