Of the three great antique furniture designers of the mid to late 18th century, namely Chippendale, Hepplewhite and Sheraton, it is perhaps Sheraton’s designs that are regarded as most relevant in style terms to modern living. Sheraton bridged the gap between Neo-classicism and Regency to produce furniture that was supremely elegant. His designs were rectilinear in shape which can be seen to best effect on the rectangular backs of his dining chairs and the tops of his dining tables.
Sheraton, like Chippendale and Hepplewhite, really only designed rather than made furniture, and it would be extremely difficult to find a piece attributed directly to him. However later 18th century furniture via Sheraton’s Cabinet-Maker’s and Upholsterer’s Drawing Book seriously influenced furniture design between 1760 and 1795.
Sheraton was responsible for the revival of the bergère chair in 1785 and the introduction of the splayed foot to the bow fronted chest. He introduced the sabre leg which provided the forerunner of later Regency dining chair design, divided the canterbury into both a serving trolley and a music stand, and his designs seriously increased the popularity of the Pembroke table. He produced a kidney shaped library table and desk, was responsible for the trio nest tables and a washstand that in his own words could ‘stand in a genteel room without giving offence to the eyes.’ His name still remains irrevocably attached to certain types of 18th century sideboard and of course his designs were solely responsible for a serious Edwardian revival at the beginning of the 20th century.
Sheraton has left a fine legacy of period and revival antique furniture. When looking for Sheraton antique dining chairs and antique dining tables , Cumbria and Lancashire antique dealers can show you a good selection of both period and revival pieces.
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