A complete review of furniture styles
encompasses hundreds of years and a myriad of influences. Historical
periods as well as the rule of kings and queens have defined the categorization
various styles. Geographical differences, political matters, and religious
issues have affected the way furniture was designed and produced. Royalty
often created a direction or inspired specific craftsmen to develop furniture
by interpreting the royalties desires and whims. The unearthing of ancient
architecture stimulated many different interpretations. Function and
practical uses were also considered. There is no question that the American
influence on furniture making and design resulted from the melting pot
of people from all parts of the world.
|CONTEMPORARY furniture is characterized by simple and clean
lines. This style is void of the heavy carvings and ornate features
of other furniture styles. Many pieces will utilize geometric
forms and futuristic appearances. Practical functions in the
products take precedent over dramatic and lavish appearances.
Contemporary designers may incorporate classic and traditional
features in subtle and understated ways. The wood and fabric
used in contemporary furniture is often light, exotic, and trendy.
Colors will follow the path of "ready to wear " clothing
and are subject to change as fashion changes
|TRADITIONAL furniture is characterized by distinct design features.
Carvings, overlays, pilasters, columns, pediments, claw, ball,
masks, and animal heads are often incorporated in this generalized
category. The classic details of traditional furniture are reflections
of the periods and influences of years gone by. In the days before
mass production, the ornate and elaborate features described
above were made possible by the careful execution by the old
world craftsmen. Modern day technology can duplicate many of
these hand made and craftsmen inspired designs. The woods used
in traditional furniture will usually include cherry, walnut,
mahogany, and oak. Fabrics include damasks, brocades, tapestries,
|COUNTRY furniture is often called Early American or Colonial.
It generally evolved from the more traditional furniture designs
of the European continent but adapted to the more rustic and
rugged life in the new America. The heavy carvings and ornate
features of traditional furniture give way to simple turnings
and more relaxed interpretation of the classic traditional designs.
Practical function and form are accented by simple carving, turnings,
and trim accents. Pine, maple, birch and other softer woods are
used in the construction. Fabrics will use patterns of plaid,
checks, and country scenes to add to the folksy nature of this
|ORIENTAL furniture is a direct reflection of the orient and
the culture of that region. The furniture will be practical and
functional. As in contemporary, the lines and designs will be
simplistic with distinct accents of the oriental culture. Long
sweeping curves are often incorporated in the design. Painted
finishes with stenciling and gilding are commonly incorporated.
The hardware used for drawer pulls and hinges may reflect intricate
details with an overall feeling of simplicity. Fabrics used will
include cotton prints, satin like feel, and a variety of solid
but vivid colors. Prints may include scenes of the countryside
or of animals.
|CASUAL furniture is a combination of contemporary and country
styling with a real emphasis on the comfort and function of the
item. Rustic may be used to describe this particular category.
This furniture appears to be well built and ready to use. The
focus is on comfort and function with less emphasis on design
or design elements. Materials used will be oak, pine, birch,
and maple. Fabrics will use textures in solid colors with the
emphasis on durability.