We have treated of the wall and floor coverings first and left the separate pieces of furniture to the fast on the supposition that in the furnishing of the new house that might be the order observed. One safe principle should guide in the buying of furniture, - avoid getting too many things. The average houses are crowded with pieces of furniture which serve no definite purpose and take space that could be better used.
Helen Campbell in "Household Economics", says: "This reasoning holds good for every article of furniture; first, its use to man; second, its own laws of construction; third, its relation to the thousand needs of household life".
Our early models in furniture as in architecture were English. To them we are indebted for the designs which served as models for New England cabinet makers.
Out of the number of forms we select various styles of chairs as illustrating the types of furniture. Frances Clary Morse says in "Furniture of the Olden Times": "Forms and stools were used for seats in the sixteenth and early seventeenth centuries and inventories of wealthy men do not often contain more than one or two chairs". Thrown or turned chairs were in use then.
Three of the best known English chair makers of the eighteenth century were Chippendale, Hepplewhite and Sheraton. Chippendale seemed to have borrowed his ideas from the French in the way of ornamentation, though the form is developed from the Dutch style and the legs adapted from Chinese furniture. He seems to have preferred the French scroll foot. A distinguishing characteristic is the bow form at the top of the back; elaborate carving and fine proportion are his also.
CHIPPENDALE ARM CHAIRS.
From Furniture of the Olden Times, by Alice Carey Morse. Macmillan & Co., Publishers.
Hepplewhite followed Chippendale. The Hepple-white chairs are characterized by lightness. He used both carving and inlaying. The heart, oval, or shield shape back distinguishes these chairs. A specialty of Hepplewhite was to finish the chair backs with painted or japanned work.
Hepplewhite was followed by Sheraton, whose chairs retained many of the features of Hepplewhite's, but he sought to strengthen the chairs by a different construction of the back. He made the back rectangular in shape, The splats end in a rail which crosses the back a few inches clove the seat.
CHIPPENDALE CHAIR WITH LEATHER SEAT.
The Windsor is another familiar type of chair which made its appearance in this country about 1730. Originally the Windsor chairs were painted green. The comb back Windsor chair illustrated is a Windsor writing chair said to have belonged to Thomas Jefferson.