Circa 1830, a fine miniature armoire in the Louis-Philippe aesthetic. Just in from France along with some other wonderful 19th century French ebeniste's apprentice furniture items, all sized perfectly for your Bru and other antique dolls. The tradition of apprentice work through history in the French furniture industries was for an Ebeniste (cabinet maker) to take in apprentice workers as a practical solution to adding workers at little or no pay, AND to train them well in the arts of their trade while they worked for nearly nothing. The apprentice often slept on site, or in cramped quarters within the ebeniste's own family home, and an apprenticeship was both coveted and prized to the extent that it would provide a young person with the potential of a career if he did show progress and skill. These miniature furniture pieces are the 'final exam' accomplished at various levels to test the apprentice or student on how well their skills progressed. They often were charged with the design as well as all construction, which was entirely by hand. The brass or bronze hardware was also hand made on most of these, the design of the student. The miniatures come in varieties of styles, and show a variety of skill levels, as well, and are highly sought after by collectors. Doll collectors are among those who look for these, as they build vignettes for their Bru or other antique dolls, since the scale is often perfect for those dolls, and what doll does not wish to have her own antiques, after all. One of a kind, they are not production pieces made for dolls, they are truly works of art. This one has a fine veneer of rosewood, nicely accented by that stringing of inlaid fruit wood. The knobs are also part of the apprentice's training and would have been cast for this piece only, to show the skill level attained by the student. Because these are one of a kind pieces, they can often bring extraordinary prices from collectors. Watch for more from our collection soon. Isn't this one fine! We also have a matching chest of drawers, be sure to look for that one, too. Thanks!
Very good condition for age and type. The mirror is original, has a slight couple of silvering 'scumbles' but should remain with the armoire and enhances its age. But the mirror is original and important, in good condition and has no cracks or chips. The marble/onyx top, on the other hand, is a replacement but in the old style veined pale onyx that would have originally been found on the piece. A fine miniature!
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