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A Timeline of Antique Furniture: The Periods, Furniture Styles & Features

January 04, 2019

A Timeline of Antique Furniture: The Periods, Furniture Styles & Features - English Georgian America

It is a truth universally acknowledged that a single man or woman in possession of a large or small fortune must be in want of upholstery. In fact, there are a ton ofdifferent kinds of English antique furniture that you can buy, all with unique histories and personalities.

If you're interested in antiques or just need new interesting furniture to spice up your home, you're probably wondering what sorts of cool English styles you can use for your home's interior.

We're here to give you a brief timeline of British antique furniture that you can get used or remade to give your living room a little more life!


Gothic Revival

The Gothic Revival movement takes us all the way from 1730 to 1900. All in all, that's a long time that spans over a lot of other trends and styles. It was so popular and persistent for many reasons, but one of the main ones was probably that itbrought back nostalgia for the idealized chivalry that people wished would come back from Medieval England.

Pieces during this time were carved in more pointed shapes than we might see in mainstream furniture today. Gothic Revival pieces tend to have shapes that looked like arches and came up into points.

Another interesting feature of this style was the floral shapes that tended to be cut into the woodwork of Gothic Revival chairs, tables, and bookcases. Most of these flowers would resemble roses.

Whether this was a callback to the days of the Tudor rose in the 1500s or the romance that it symbolized in the time of the Canterbury Tales, who can say? All we know is that this beautiful woodwork will make any room more classy.


Regency Era Woodwork

Up until 1830, the Regency Era swept England with style. This brought out new styles of furniture that hadn't been seen before and popularized new sorts of woodwork.

For example, when we think about the wooden tables of the time, where a lady might sit and enjoy tea with a friend, we tend to think of a lot of fancy patterns cut into the wood.

This isn't entirely wrong. Looking at aRegency extendable dining table, we see beautiful wood spread out over multiple panels. The platform base and legs are where its beauty really shines, though. Look at the brass caps at the end of the outswept table legs. Posh, right?


Regency Era Fabrics

Not only is the woodwork on Regency Era furniture beautiful, but the fabrics are lovely, too. One of the biggest trends during this movement was to have detailedpatterns decorate fabrics.

A lot of these patterns were floral, a type of decor that was popular at the time. This was possible in large part because the women of social classes that had the means to buy nice furniture were all trained in needlepoint.

Not to mention those who were trained in the making of furniture, this class of women made the Regency era into the classy, grand era that we idealize it as today.


Victorian Era Woodwork

In 1837 when Queen Victoria came to the throne, she took upper-class England to a new height of fashion. This, of course, not only extended to clothes but also to furniture. People with means as well as places like popular gaming clubs could use this style to amp up their beauty.

Tables were a fixture at basically all these places. One of the most popular styles in a table is theSpider Leg. This was a sort of table leg that had three curved parts that all rested up against the floor like a claw. We see it in a lot of period dramas as a staple of Victorian decorating.

The reeded leg was also popular in the Victorian Era. This was a similar style to its predecessor, the Regency Era's fluted leg, which had grooves in its straight, upright structure that went inward. The reeded leg, though, was different because these grooves went outward, putting a new flair on a familiar style.


Victorian Era Fabrics

The fabric types used in the Victorian era were expanded a lot from the amount used in previous time periods. Since large furniture was a way to express wealth, big plush chairs were an in thing. Also, since bright colors were popular during the time, high-class Victorians had to get crafty when picking out materials for their furniture.

Themost popular fabrics used were cotton, linen, silk, and wool. These were all comfy and would look rich and beautiful so that wealth could be displayed when entertaining guests. These fabrics could be bought with lots of patterns decorating them, so there was no problem with getting a variety of cool designs!


Trends In English Antique Furniture

A good thing about knowing all these different time periods isn't just for the sake of satisfying curiosity or dating your own furniture, but also that you can decide what styles would go best in your home.

If you're looking for a new, fresh way to bring life to your decor, you might want to think about buying furniture from one of these time periods. There are also replicas that you can get if you can't find or afford the real thing. They'll give your room the same sophistication as the real thing.

Which period do you connect with? What kind of style and elegance do you want to give your room? Once you decide, you can figure out the perfect fit for any room you might want to fill.



Now that you know all about the styles and eras of English antique furniture, be sure tocheck out this page that outlines all the possibilities for furniture you could have custom-made to fit the exact look you want.

Now get ready to wow your guests by bringing your home to new heights of elegance and sophistication!