July 10, 2010

History of Furniture manufacturing

First furnishings
When people began to settle in one location, furniture started to appear; the furniture consisted of stone beds and cupboards. “In Europe, some of the earliest known furniture comes from a Stone Age village at Sara Brae in the Orkney Islands in Scotland about 2,000 BC.” [1]

Ancient Egypt, Ancient Greek and Rome furniture
Affluent Egyptians used beds, chairs and tables. In Ancient Greece, furnishings were barer; a rich household often used a dresser to showcase expensive cups; wooden framed couches were used for lounging and sleeping. In Rome, the well-off families had upholstered and intricately carved furniture; couches were used for relaxing.

Middle Ages
Furniture was extremely basic, even in wealthy homes, chairs were uncommon; mainly, people sat on stools and benches.

16th, 17th and 18th centuries furniture manufacturing

In the 16th century, furniture was more plentiful, but still basic; massive oak furniture was common among the rich. Chairs, still very expensive, were becoming more widespread.

Seventeenth century furniture can be described as plain, heavy and made of oak; furniture among the affluent gradually became more comfy and decorated, made of walnut, then mahogany.
In the 18th century, the wealthy owned upholstered furniture; a famous wood furniture manufacturer, Thomas Chippendale (1718-1779), specialized in fine mahogany furniture.

19th and 20th centuries
The first mass-produced furniture was made in the 19th century; although this increased its availability, it may have led to a drop in design and quality.
As living standards improved, furniture was more accessible in the 20th century; it was now common to have appropriate furnishings in all rooms of the house.

American Colonial furniture

The type of wood used to manufacture American Colonial furniture depended on which was locally available; furniture was made using maple, oak, walnut, birch, cherry and pine. Early American chairs and tables were often manufactured with curved spindles and chair backs; the style emphasized form, materials and functionality.
Although there has been much evolution in the availability and style of furniture, the common thread in the history of furniture is the use of wood as well as the desire for quality and comfort. If you are looking for quality wood furniture chair parts, contact Newport Furniture Parts, one of the few USA furniture manufacturers.

1 http://www.localhistories.org/furniture.html

http://www.oldandsold.com/articles04/article1285.shtml

http://www.connectedlines.com/styleguide/

http://www.scribd.com/doc/969671/Types-of-Wood-used-in-Furniture-Construction

 

 

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