Sunday, March 6, 2011

Thinking about Spanish style furniture



I have a house whose architectural style is called "Spanish Eclectic", and this house needs furniture that fits it. A while back in the library I found a pamphlet published by the New Mexico Department of Vocational Education in 1933 called "Spanish Colonial Furniture Bulletin", a book of line drawings of extant furniture from the Spanish Colonial era. In the brief text the pamphlet states that New Mexico was settled by colonists early in the period (end of 16th century) and had minimal contact with outside influences after colonization, due to the discovery of limited exploitable resources. Thus, much of the furniture design is influenced by Spanish medieval and Renaissance design.

Note the mortise and tenon joinery and the spline that joins the boards that make up the seat of the chair on the right.

This will be one of the sources for designs for the dining table and chairs I eventually plan to build and which are just in the earliest design phase.



Another example of something Spanish I like is this table from either the 16th or 17th century, I'm not sure and the book (Great Styles of Furniture) isn't very informative either.

7 comments:

Mark Z said...

Very nice chairs. They would be a lovely compliment to your Spanish syle house.

Painting Tips and Tricks said...

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fuddle said...

You can find in Project Gutenberg several titles on this style of furniture, called "Mission Furniture" or "Mission Style".
It was solid furniture- easily embellished- but functional, durable furniture & made without nails, screws or glues. Actually- coincidentally identical to many Asian styles of furniture- especially Japanese & Javanese- Chinese as well- but they tended to prefer skillfully worked elaborate bronze pins.
The finishing & embellishment could be done later by skilled upholsterers etc.
Here's a link tot he text "Mission Furniture" by H. H. Windsor
http://www.gutenberg.org/files/23770/23770-h/23770-h.htm
The Catholic (mainly) missions once established- would then teach these skills to their new converts, parishioners, or in many cases poor non-converts- who could then improve their lot in life through a skill or trade.

Aurora Lucia Marinella said...

I love this style of chair!

I've been thinking about making some for camping and found a book you may find helpful "Spanish Interoirs and furniture: Photographs and Drawings" by Arthur Byrne and Mildred Stapley, 1921. If you are still looking for info, two of the books scale drawings of extant chairs are posted on my blog http://the-earth-is-flat.blogspot.com/2011/03/my-chair-plan.html

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