Antique Furniture is one of the most fascinating sections of antique collecting.
Primarily because so many of us naturally do what’s most important when collecting antique furniture. Most antique furniture tends to be purchased by ordinary everyday people, rather than dedicated antique furniture collectors.
Dovetail joints are strong and require skill to produce, so they’re generally a sign of a well-made piece.
Hand-cut dovetails can date an older American piece to before 1890, although hobbyists and specialty makers still use them.
Of course single drawers and combinations of drawers were made earlier but appeared usually as an adjunct to the lift top or dower chest which was the most common chest type in the that century.
But since suspensions are not always reliable and since wood expands and contracts due to weather and time a more significant consideration is “How is the drawer held together?
If you suspect there’s something unusual or distinctively well-made about your piece, go with your gut, Masaschi says, and ask someone who knows.
This construction detail is your first key to the piece’s age and quality of craftsmanship.
Other interior or home decorators tend not to take things so seriously but are still interested in items, history and authenticity.
Many vintage furniture buyers opt for quality reproductions that are more affordable, and either option is fine providing that you research your subject well when identifying antique furniture.
If you have a worn old dresser or rickety heirloom chair on your hands, you may be thinking of refinishing it yourself.