GOOD TIME TO BUY EMPIRE REVIVAL FURNITURE
Dear Chatelaine's Antiques,
I have a hutch and buffet from what I'm told is the empire revival period.
Can you tell me when this period occurred? Are these pieces abundantly available?
Empire revival is a very complicated term. It's used to describe furniture
made during the late 19th-century throughout Europe and the United States.
Furniture makers were influenced by the original empire style, which
coincided with the reign of Napoleon from 1799 to 1815. But they didn't
copy it exactly. New techniques allowed the furniture to be mass-produced,
resulting in bulkier pieces with thicker veneers.
You should have someone who really knows furniture take a look at your
hutch and buffet, because its value can span a wide range. There were some
very good American designers and manufacturers, but in general French
furniture is made better and much more valuable.
Of course availability depends on where you live, but you can find fairly
inexpensive furniture in the American South.
The good news is, empire revival furniture is becoming fashionable again.
The market for empire revival furniture has
grown during the last 10 years. In fact, it may well be the next
decorating trend. And it's a good time to buy, because prices are fairly
low and interest is rising.
What about you? Got a question for Chatelaine's Antiques, Collectibles & Appraisals? Send your questions and photos to
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