American furniture design and age dating

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A revival of Art Deco from the 1930’s influenced the 1980’s when we saw colours changing to teals and mauve and a temporary break-away from symmetry in furniture styles.This revived Art Deco period was short lived and that in itself might make furniture from this period attractive.In a nutshell, Antique means something, mostly furniture, art or a decorative object that can specifically be dated as over 100 years old. Vintage furniture is under 100 years old and by any definition refers to furniture made in the 20th century.The age is the determining factor regardless of it’s style, quality or condition. The use of the word Vintage as in ‘Vintage furniture’ has broad application and can mean furniture from any period.The architectural styles were led by Bauhaus in Germany that eventually moved to America.

Vintage furniture should be datable to an approximate period of manufacture if not specifically the year, then at least the decade In the vintage and retro furniture industry Vintage, Retro and Art Deco are all used loosely.

The distinguishing features of this style are a classic, understated look, and clean lines. Black and white was used for graphic contrast with little use of grey tones There are several Mid-century Modern designers that became famous and inspired designers who came after them.

The new designers freely used and mixed new materials with traditional such as plastic, vinal, glass, plexiglass and lucite, veneer, plywood, solid wood and aluminium. Furniture pieces inspired by their designs, as well as copies are greatly sought after.

However if we go back to the origin of the phrase ‘vintage’ it should be used more specifically. In wine it refers to wine made from grapes picked in a specific season.

In vintage cars it means a car that is at least 20 years old.

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