Dating wood furniture dove staple

If you’re lucky, a piece will have a marking on it indicating its origin.

Early pieces that were handcrafted will sometimes bear an inscription from an individual furniture maker, a clue to its value that should be examined by a professional appraiser.

Solid wood backing indicates a piece is likely pre-1880s; plywood came into vogue around the turn of the 20th century.

Particleboard means you probably have something made in the 1960s or later—the era of “cutting corners,” as Masaschi says.

Game or card tables did not exist in great numbers until the end of the 17th Century.

Windsor chairs were not around before the Queen Anne period.

However, if you have questions about how old your piece is, consult an expert first, says Teri Masaschi, author of Foolproof Wood Finishing: For Those Who Love to Build & Hate to Finish.

If you have a worn old dresser or rickety heirloom chair on your hands, you may be thinking of refinishing it yourself.

Older mass-produced pieces whose origins fall somewhere between 18 are ideal candidates for refinishing.

Construction techniques can assist you in dating furniture. In the 17th Century, butt and rabbet joints were used.

Hand-cut dovetails appeared late in that century and for the next 80 years or so, dovetails were wide, stubby, and crude. By the end of the 1700s, dovetails became thin and delicate. If you find Phillips head screws throughout, you don't have an antique. If it is 1/32nd of an inch thick, it is Victorian or newer, as compared to the 17th and 18th Century 1/16" to 1/8" veneers.

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