Victorian interior design is so named because it reached its peak of popularity during Queen Victoria's reign over the British Empire. Her reign began in 1837 and ended with her death in 1901. The architecture during this epoch featured elaborate exteriors characterized by gingerbread scrollwork on eaves and complemented by ornately embellished interiors. Victorian furniture carries out this theme and includes several characteristics to look for.

Victorian furniture typically has intricate carving with curving lines and natural images such as leafy patterns, floral patterns, or animals. The Art Nouveau style, which came later, has similar patterns and decorations, making it trickier to determine if a piece of furniture is Victorian. However, unlike Art Nouveau furniture, Victorian pieces will have angular lines and shapes along with carvings added onto the furniture. The basic shape of a Victorian chair or table is straight but with curves along the seat back, the bottom or legs of the chair, or at the bottom below the cushions on a sofa. Decorative friezes and curved moldings are common in Victorian pieces


The Edwardian period was known for elegance and cheer. The furniture during this period was a mix of styles and design, and though few pieces can truly be called Edwardian in style, the period still evokes a time of change and distinction. Edwardian furniture is light, airy and often whimsical. Identifying Edwardian furniture is more about fixing a time when a piece was made, rather than its characteristics. Edwardian furniture comes in many guises, borrowed from times past and ideas new to furniture design.

The Edwardian period is identified with the reign of King Edward VII of England, son of Queen Victoria. King Edward succeeded to the throne in 1901. He died in 1910. The Victorian period had been marked by dark, jewel-toned colors and heavy furnishings. Interiors were filled with velvets and jacquard fabrics, ornately carved furniture and layered window treatments. The Edwardian period is noted for its lighter aesthetic. Bright colors, lightweight fabrics and furniture designed with delicate lines and upholstered in fabrics with flowing graphics and floral design.




A Queen Anne style furniture is a style of furniture design that developed during and around the reign of Ann, Queen of great Britan (1702-1714). Queen Anne furniture is "somewhat smaller, lighter, and more comfortable than its predecessors," and examples in common use include "curving shapes, the cabriole leg, cushioned seats, wingback chairs, and practical secertary desk- Bookcase pieces.Other elements characterizing the style include pad feet and "an emphasis on line and form rather than ornament." In Britain, the style of Queen Anne's reign is frequently described as "late Baroque" rather than "Queen Anne," while in the United States the term "Queen Anne" describes decorative styles from the mid-1720s to around 1760, although Queen Anne reigned earlier.


Art Deco was an important artistic genre that included furniture design. It modernized many themes and artistic styles from past art. It contains influences from the Egyptians, Mayans, Greeks, Romans, and Far and Middle Greece. Designs from nature and automobiles are indicative of Art Deco, according to

Art Deco was a style of art and furniture during the first two world wars which spanned from around 1920 to 1939, according to Furniture styles changed because of the social changes that made different types of furniture necessary after World War I. People who could afford expensive luxuries wanted nicely designed, decorative furniture that was useful too. Art Deco continued to affect art through 1950. There were two main schools of Art Deco. The first focused on making art for the rich, upper class of society with specially designed pieces of furniture. Each piece of furniture was a work of art. While the first school used ivory and amboyna wood, the second school used chrome and glass. Individualized furniture gave way to mass production, and furniture makers used a geometric look to make obvious that their work was functional in the mid-1920s


Art Nouveau is a design style that flourished during the late 19th and early 20th centuries and permeated architecture, decoration, furniture and the visual arts. Developed in Europe, the movement celebrated "art for art's sake" and emphasized fluid, undulating shapes inspired by nature. Its decorative, ornamental style led to individualized furnishings as well as Antonio Gaudi's architecture and paintings by Gustav Klimt and Toulouse-Lautrec. Collectible home accessories in the same style are Lalique glassware and Tiffany lamps

Art Nouveau is based on organic forms meant to evoke nature. Instead of sharp lines and right angles, the style features gentle arches, elongated curves and fluid-looking edges that flow together. The look can present challenges, especially when dealing with flat tables and chair legs. Art Nouveau furniture overcomes the straight lines with chair and table legs that bow gracefully instead of standing stick-straight. Bookcases and cabinets are designed to feature tree-like limbs that appear supple and asymmetrical, rather than rigid or uniform. Organic, relaxed forms and naturalistic principles are the central characteristics of furnishings in the Art Nouveau style


 The Georgian period of English history encompasses the years between 1714 to the early 1800s, covering the reigns of George I, George II, George III and George IV. It was a period of great change in England, with many social reforms like the building of hospitals and orphanages. The period spawned a resurgence in architecture in which Thomas Chippendale's furniture fit perfectly with the spirit of the age.

Several characteristics distinguish Chippendale furniture. The construction is sturdy but not always well proportioned as is often the case in Georgian period furniture. It often has cabriolet legs -- that is, turned out at the knee and in at the ankle. Some straight-legged pieces are also found. Carvings were often the only ornamentation on pieces, which gave them an integral simplicity. Upholstered seats on chairs tended to be wide, and ladder-backs on chairs were wider at the top than at the bottom. Aprons and skirts on furniture pieces were carved. The wood was always mahogany, which Thomas Chippendale considered the most suitable of woods.

MAHOGANY: Mahogany has a generally straight grain and is usually free of voids and pockets. It has a reddish brown color which darkens over time, and displays a beautiful reddish sheen when polished. It has excellent workability, and is very durable and slow to deteriorate.
These properties make it a favorable wood for boat making, as tradition has shown, as well as for making furniture and upholstery, musical instruments, and other durable objects.
Mahogany is a very popular material for drum making, because of its great integrity and capability to produce a very dark, warm tone compared to other more common wood types like maple or birch. The famous Beatles sound of the 60s was made with Ludwig Drums in mahogany shells.
Today, several drum manufacturers have rediscovered the features of mahogany shells, resulting in several high end series offering shells made in this wood.
A wide variety of electric guitars are also made from mahogany, like Gibson's Les Paul line and most of the PRS guitars, among others. Again, it is noted for its dark properties, as well as its weight, the combination of which produces a warm, rounded tone with huge sustain.
It should also be noted that Mahogany is a very popular choice of material for luthiers constructing all grades of acoustic guitars. Mahogany is also an excellent choice for use in chess products.

Oak is the most common of all the hardwoods. Its familiar grain pattern has become so popular that oak furniture, particularly antique furniture, is referred to as "traditional." Although there are many types of oak, two species of oak are common to the northern hemisphere. Red oak, which is the workhorse of the hardwood industry, is common, while its cousin, white oak, is more exclusive, harder, and more expensive.

Red oak has a zig-zag pattern, broad-grained, that allows stain to sink into open pores, highlighting the grain even more. White oak is straighter with a tighter grain pattern. Stain will not penetrate the grain easily, making staining of white oak more consistent

MAPLE:  Maples are mostly trees growing to 10-40 meters (30-130 ft) in height. Others are shrubs less than 10 meters tall with a number of small trunks originating at ground level. Most species are deciduous, but a few in southern Asia and the Mediterranean region are evergreen.
Some of the larger maple species have valuable timber, particularly Sugar Maple in North America, and Sycamore Maple in Europe. Sugar Maple wood, often known as "hard maple", is the wood of choice for bowling pins, bowling alley lanes, drums and butcher blocks. Maple wood is also used for the production of wooden baseball bats, though less often than ash or hickory.
Some maple wood has a highly decorative wood grain, known as flame maple and quilt maple. This condition occurs randomly in individual trees of several species, and often cannot be detected until the wood has been sawn, though it is sometimes visible in the standing tree as a rippled pattern in the bark.
Maple is considered a tone-wood, or a wood that carries sound waves well, and is used in numerous musical instruments such as guitars and drums.
Maple is often used in necks of guitars. It provides resonance and a lighter weight than many other woods used in necks such as rosewood. Also the look of a maple neck is appealing to many guitar players. Maple is also used to make bassoons.
Maple�s durability and unique grain makes it an excellent choice for use in chess boards.

 The term "rosewood" refers to the wood of a number of tropical tree species, especially those of the Dalbergia genus. The color of the timber ranges from deep brown to purple and violet, and is streaked with black. The appearance of this wood combined with its strong and heavy characteristics have made this a popular timber, leading to over-utilization and diminished sources.

Rosewood timber comes from the heartwood of canopy trees, some measuring up to 100 feet. For 300 years, trade of rosewood was central to Brazil's industry, but now the trees are nearing extinction. Timber is also present in other countries in tropical America, Southeast Asia and Madagascar. The durable, oily wood derives its name from its fragrant quality. As the wood ages, it may lose its rich hue and become a lighter tan color or golden brown



One of the main reasons that teak wood is used in furniture and home repair is its proclivity to weather resistance. The natural oils contained within allow teak lumber to be safety used outdoors (and indoors) without risk of damage. Teak timber can even be safely used with little or no varnish or treatment, although such added protection supplies a longer life for the furniture.

The age of teak lumber, though, makes a difference in the woods ability to maintain itself in inclement weather. Older, more mature teak wood having grown slowly in natural forests, which goes for a very attractive price, is more durable and self-sustaining, whereas the younger teak timber harvested on plantations, not having as many annular rings, is weaker and prone to splitting and warping from water damage.

Aged teak lumber (i.e., teak grown old, not teak wood that has been vegetating for a long period of time) serves as the best wooden material for building.

As for constructing, teak timber, which is very widely known in India (teak comes from Thekkus, an ancient word from Southern India), is commonly used for all kinds of household features from outdoor benches




The year in which the item was made

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