Thursday, June 23, 2011
This adorable vanity and vanity bench made by Home Styles furniture isn't specifically mission furniture, but it does include a few similar features such as the slightly flared legs and since I have little girls I had to put it in the blog! My sister had a similar set growing up and my girls love these type of pieces.
This vanity has a handy tilting mirror, is constructed of solid hardwoods and has a clear protective finish. Check it out here: Home Styles Naples Vanity Bench 5530-72
Thursday, June 9, 2011
When you are on a tight budget Wal-mart furniture can get you by, but as the years pass and things get a little better financially your tastes can only handle that cheap, pull-your-hair-out-put-it-together-yourself furniture for so long.
I wanted to blog today about an amazing craftsman that I spoke to recently. He is a true artist and his work is very accurate and his reproductions are true to the period. Not only that, but his furniture is simply beautiful. You can get an idea of the techniques put into his furniture here: YoderMissionFurniture.com/methods. Everything from using quartersawn white oak, mortise and tenon and dovetail joinery, to inlays and tongue and groove back joints.
Another little fun feature of Merle's mission furniture is the inclusion of "hidden compartments," which is an old tradition in handcrafted furniture. Merle has been at it for more than 30 years and truly knows his stuff!
One of my favorite pieces in this collection is the Grand Teton Mission Bed seen in the image above. Although this bed is similar to other mission beds, I love the darker tones in the wood and the thicker cuts in the slats. I also love his Dining Room Furniture and you have to love the baby cradle! Visit Merle's site today to see his wonderful work! YoderMissionFurniture.com
Friday, March 11, 2011
When referring to mission style furniture, the arts and crafts era, or any other related topic, the name Gustav Stickley always seems to come up. He has a pretty important sounding name, but just who is this man and what does he have to do with mission style furniture, arts and crafts furniture or craftsman furniture?
His works must be important and his contribution great. Gustav Stickley has been referred to as a “visionary” and as an “enthusiastic proselytizer of design reform.” He is known as one of the most influential figures of the American Arts and Crafts movement.
His parents came to the US from Germany and moved to Wisconsin, where Gustav was born in 1958. He gained experience in his Uncle’s furniture factory from a young age and was known as very industrious. He formed his first company with his brothers in 1883. Stickley Brothers & Company, as it was called only lasted for five years, but this was the beginning of a long career in which he was involved in multiple companies and projects.
Being influenced by British Arts and Crafts movement pioneer, William Morris, Stickley’s ideals rejected the conspicuous nature of the Victorian embracing a more simple and honest approach in shaping the American home.
Stickley was known to despise the term “Mission Style,” commonly used to refer to his works and preferred that it be called “Craftsman.” In 1901 the first issue of Stickley’s magazine “The Craftsman” was published and this publication became an important medium for promoting Arts and Crafts philosophy, not to mention his products.
In 1903 Stickley hired Harvey Ellis, who was influential in continuing to shape the style of furnishings being produced. Stickley’s works are characterized by the unembellished, plain surfaces and thoughtful finish work to enliven and preserve the natural grain of the wood as well as “honesty” in craftsmanship, which speaks to his distaste of the “fake” joinery of some other products. He exposed his true mortise and tenon joinery to give emphasis to the high quality of his structures.
From September 15, 2010 to January 2, 2011 a special collection of Stickley’s works were on display at the Newark Museum in New Jersey. The exhibition included more than 100 of the most important works by Stickley’s designers and workshops.
When the Stickley factory was on the brink of closing it E.J. Audi's wife and son decided to purchase it. E.J. had been a leading seller of Stickley's furniture in a New York showroom. Today the Audi family keeps the Stickley legacy alive.
In 1988 Barbra Streisand paid $363K for a Stickley piece. That is a pretty good sign that he left quite a mark on the furniture industry and that he was truly a pioneer of the arts and crafts and mission style. To learn more about Gustav Stickely, please visit the following sites below, which are the sources of this blog post!
Tuesday, February 15, 2011
Arts and Crafts Industries (website) is one of the leading manufacturers of arts and crafts style furniture. Many of their furniture designs can also be classified as "mission style." In the construction of their fine furniture they use high quality wood such as Northern Red Oak from the Ohio Valley, Aromatic Cedar from the Missouri Valley, Pennsylvanian cherry wood and leather from South America.
Some of their construction standards are as follows:
- All oak is red oak from the United States
- All Veneer is quarter sawn with a high percentage of ray flake*
- Cedar Drawer Sides are solid US aromatic cedar
- All joints are mortise & tenon
- No staples are used except in pinning glue joints
*What is "Ray Flake?" Ray flake is the distinct grain or "striping" that is seen in quarter sawn oak.
What is Mortise & Tenon? Mortise and tenon joints have been used by craftsman for many years. This is a simple way to join pieces together (most commonly pieces that must be joined at a 90 degree angle. For more on this type of joinery visit this link at Wikipedia: Mortise and Tenon
The Arts and Crafts Industries "Mission" collection features drawers that are solid cedar with English dove tail construction, authentic hardwood drawer guides and full 1" thick tops, drawer fronts, and dresser framework. This collection includes the queen or king bed, the Mission 1-drawer Night Stand, the Mission 2-drawer Bench, the Mission Dresser Mirror and the Mission 10-drawer Dresser, and the Mission Bedroom Armoire. MissionStyleFurnitureOnline.com offers these at great prices. Visit their website for more about Arts and Crafts Industries products.
Friday, February 11, 2011
Today’s entry will be a little history about this style of furniture. Towards the end of the 19th century and into the beginning of the 20th century mission style furniture began to become popular. Similar to when our lives get to complex and filled with excessive activities and we turn back to basics scaling back and returning to a more simple structure, this style of furniture was the result of a return to a more simple way of crafting furniture. The Victorian styles had become extreme in their decoration and mission furniture was a return to simpler values and artistry.
Joseph McHugh a manufacturer of furniture around 1895 is commonly known as the man who coined the phrase “mission furniture.” The terms “mission furniture” and “mission style furniture” are a bit of a misnomer, since this style didn’t really spawn from the style of furnishings found in the Spanish missions. Mr. McHugh had copied the style of a chair with its straight and simple lines, which was found in a church, whose structure had been designed after the style of the mission architecture. Somehow, the “mission” name stuck and people most commonly search for this type of furniture using the term “mission style furniture” or “mission furniture.”
Some also use the term “Arts and Crafts Furniture” to refer to this style, but “mission style,” technically, could be considered a subset of the “arts and crafts” style.
Saturday, January 29, 2011
Mission Style Furniture Online will soon be adding this to their collection and it will be available for direct shipping. Stay tuned for another post when it is available. To see this desk visit: CFOakton.com
Wednesday, January 12, 2011
Mission style furniture is best known for its simple designs and straight lines. Mission style furniture originated in the last decade of the 19th century in the California where a church congregation constructed their own sturdily built furniture. The furniture they created resembled that built for Spanish mission stations, hence, the furniture created with this style was referred to as mission style furniture. It had a simple design and smooth lines because the California congregation wanted to make it a simple as possible to construct. Even though it is simple to construct, mission style furniture is still a highly regarded and much sought after style of furniture.
Today there are many different types of mission style furniture. Hand crafted mission style furniture is still produced in smaller shops at higher costs, but there are also larger manufacturers that produce excellent mission style furniture at a lower cost, making it more readily available. With the many styles of furniture available to the consumer, it can be difficult choosing the one best suited for you and your home. Fortunately, mission style furniture is one style of furniture that looks good in almost any home. For those looking for beautiful furniture with a memorable history, mission style furniture is an ideal choice. Mission style furniture can be found for any room of your home or office as well as for your outdoor spaces.