Learning To Identify Antique Furniture


When it comes to identifying antique furniture, you must be careful as there are a lot of reproductions and forgeries out there. Before you start lavishing money on antique furniture, it is worth your time and effort to first educate yourself on what you are buying to try and ensure that you not only get a good deal but also get a genuine antique. Below is some advice that you can follow to help assist you in knowing what to look for so that you understand what you are purchasing when it comes to buying antique furniture.

What Is It Made From?

Most antique furniture will be made from wood, and the type of wood that is used can give us clues to the age of the item when you buy and sell antiques online. You will often find that oak furniture can come from pre-1700’s, mahogany and walnut were popular to use between 1700 and 1800, and after 1800 maple and cherry were popular woods to use for furniture. Knowing what type of wood has been used can give you an insight into the age, but you need to remember that other types of wood were used during these times as well.

Check For Signs Of Restoration

If an item has been restored, then it may not be as valuable, so you will want to look for signs that an item has had work done to it. Make sure the legs, handles, and knobs all match and are from the correct period. You will also want to look for repairs to the wood, especially the corners. If an item has been restored and you think it will look perfect in your home, as long as you do not overpay for it there is nothing to say that you should not purchase it. Just be aware that it can affect the value and you may need to haggle to get a reasonable price.

Ask For Provenance

While there are articles available online that tell you how to identify antique wooden furniture, if the person selling the antique furniture has made claims about the item which add to its value, you should ask for provenance to confirm the claims. If this is not available, then you will have to decide whether you take a chance on it or not. If you are looking to sell this to someone else for a profit it may not be a good idea without the provenance, but if you are looking to use this furniture in your home, the provenance may not be as important as long as you get a reasonable price and you like the piece.

Set Your Price Limit

If you have inspected an item and you like it enough to want to buy it before you speak to the vendor, work out in your head what you think the value is and how much you are prepared to pay. Keeping this in mind, you can then approach the seller of the antique and make them an offer to start the haggling process. With a bit of luck, you will be able to get the item at a fair price that will leave both parties happy.

There is a lot to learn about antique furniture, and it is worthwhile bearing in mind that even experts with decades of experience sometimes get duped into paying more than an item is worth. Research antique furniture online to get to understand the market place, and if you have any doubts, you can ask for an independent evaluation before purchasing an item, although this will add to the cost of it.