YOUR ESSENTIAL GUIDE TO VINTAGE BAKER FURNITURE
Looking for real, state-of the art used furniture that can turn any stern-looking room into a masterpiece? Don’t settle for anything other than true craftmanship. Baker is one of the most important furniture makers of our time, with a history for creating high-quality pieces for more than a century. Throughout the years, the name has become synonym with superior craftsmanship, sturdiness and durability. Every used Baker furniture piece is one of a kind and is a testament to flawless handiwork, attention to details and respect for the finest materials. Vintage Baker furniture brings together a collection assembled from more periods, styles and international influences than any other vintage furniture maker.
A BIT OF BAKER FURNITURE HISTORY
In 1890, a Dutch wood artist named Siebe Baker started his own interior woodworking and door company. His unique workmanship was apparent in each one of his handmade pieces. The first piece crafted by Siebe Baker was a desk and bookcase combination. This was just the beginning of what has become a long and legendary line of quality furniture that focuses on four main components: exclusive design, top materials, great craftsmanship and luxury finish.
Baker started out using the finest materials and expert technique to provide customers with the top-quality furniture pieces that are meant to last forever. In the 1920’s, the brand embraced modernism with the first Art Deco collection including a few unique pieces designed by Donald Deskey, one of the pioneers and leading exponents of the Art Deco movement in America. The 1930’s see the company launching the revolutionary furniture reproduction program featuring mainly British designs and crafted by handpicked European craftsmen. As the company grew, they continued to oversee their production to ensure that each created piece met their high standards of excellence.
As the company expanded it had to improve production methods while still bringing customers high-end products. They acquired the Grand Rapids Chair Company and at about the same time began producing a line of more affordable and accessible furniture using the Milling Road Label. This line catered to modern middle-class Americans while still offering the same high standards of the brand.
The company continued to expand and grow throughout the 50’s and 60’s, introducing the first collection of Danish Modern furniture in 1951. In the 1960’s the company widened further, opening a facility in North Carolina and partnering with reputable designers to create ollections that included French provincial and Country English.
Throughout their existence, Baker furniture has always held to an extremely high standard of quality, using only the best materials and workmanship available. Through the years their furniture has become a staple among collectors, especially the modern American collections. The company has been the maker of choice for many high-end events, including the Academy Awards green room and a VIP lounge at Fashion Week. Baker has showrooms across the globe including internationally in Paris, Moscow, and Singapore, among others.
Among the talented designers Baker has associated with, Alessandro Gambrielli Gambalogna, in the 1980’s, created a unique avant-garde collection of dining room pieces. In the beginning of the 21st century, designer royalty names such as Tony Duquette and Andre Arbus improve the Baker line further, with their luminary collections.
A FEW CHOICES FOR VINTAGE BAKER FURNITURE
Baker furniture is available in a wide variety of styles and designs. The company nowadays makes furniture for every room of the home and also provides a great assortment of accessories, such as lamps, mirrors or tabletops. Used pieces may be made of dark wood such as walnut, and feature elaborately detailed carvings for which Baker was a master. You will also find many classic pieces, from cabinets, buffets, writing tables to chairs and sofas, among others.
If you are looking for casual pieces, you can go for any of the Baker Studio or Milling Road collections of vintage furniture the maker provides. These are pieces inspired by North African designs and are highly customizable, providing a high-class design aesthetic that will fit your needs perfectly. Some of the most classical choices for used Baker furniture include pieces of the maker’s historic Charleston collection and the Stately Homes reproduction line, reminiscent of a 17th century grand furniture making style.
TIPS FOR IDENTIFYING USED BAKER FURNITURE
Many collectors want to know how to look at a piece of furniture and determine whether it’s an authentic piece. There are a few signs to help you examine your piece. A maker’s mark or tag may be present on vintage Baker furniture. But it’s important to remember that the marks that were used could vary greatly over time. It’s usually a good idea to have an expert examine the piece.
The quality and workmanship must be impeccable. Every detail should be examined, even on the insides or undersides of the piece. Wear should be appropriate for the age of the piece. The finish should be original and expertly applied to the item. If the piece is old it should show wear in the areas of normal use. Pay particular attention to the joining, inlays, and carvings. If you’re buying a piece of used Baker furniture you should do so only through a reputable dealer.
CARING FOR VINTAGE BAKER FURNITURE
The Baker brand uses many natural woods that have been hand-selected for their beauty and elegance. It is important to properly care for your vintage Baker furniture to keep it looking good for many years to come. Dust your furniture regularly to keep it free from dirt. It can be cleaned using gentle furniture cleaner designed specifically for wood. Brass or other fittings can be kept clean and polished. Never clean using water, and don’t allow water to remain on the piece after an accidental spill since this will harm the finish.
Vintage Baker furniture maintains its appeal and value over time and is a wonderful addition to any room of the home.