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A Concise History of American Period Furniture
By Stanley D. Saperstein
In recent years country d�cor has become very popular, sending value of country antiques soaring. Country furniture has set period, it simply defines a style of furniture generally made by resourceful individuals with little formal training or design flair. Most often by farmers or local part-time cabinetmaker. Bound by no conventions, he made what was practical, a tradition dating back to the arrival of the pilgrims, these were humble craftsmen by necessity.
Almost every type of furniture was made in the country style, but very few originals survive. Heavy use and transient owners destroyed these functional pieces.
There are three categories of country furniture: Pennsylvania Dutch, Shaker, and country crude. Many people are familiar with the colorful
Pennsylvania Dutch furniture is simple, usually painted and highly stenciled.
Shaker furniture is basic, block lines, mortis and tenon joints, and very limited in ornamentation. Modern reproductions are offered by companies such as Stickley or smaller hand production shops such as Artisans.
Crude country pieces, however, make up the majority of the rustic furniture of rural America. Common materials are oak, pine or poplar - also found in cherry or walnut. Mahogany, however, was generally not available as a natural American resource and was almost never used in country furniture.
Artisans of the Valley produces all styles of country furniture, made exactly the same way the country cabinetmaker made it in the past century. Country pieces shown are available for sale as custom commissions. Complete authentic country kitchens are designed on special request.
Hutches, corner units, dry sinks, pie safes, tables, shelving, break fronts, curio units, and any other functional or decorative furniture can be commissioned in a country theme.
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