Antique Pedestal Fern Stands

By mwilcox


Antique Pedestals like this tend to date from the last quarter of the 19th Century, and they were often used as fern stands. They were also used to display vases, statuary pieces and things like porcelain, marble or bronze busts. Examples like this one date 1890-1910 and tend to be “Arts & crafts” hand crafted pieces, made by hobbyist woodworkers before World War One.

The late 19th Century brought forth a new interest in hand crafts, a kind of a general rejection of the over ornamented cluttered Victorian styles and machine made furniture. Shortening of the working hours for the middle and upper middle classes allowed time for hobbies such a leather craft, painting , pottery and furniture making, which were championed by William Morris and others leaders of the Arts & Crafts movement.

Values for them depend a great deal on their provenance and maker. With pieces like this a great deal of value is in their condition. It's best to leave them as close to their original condition as possible, all that's required is the regular application of a furniture polish and dusting. Unmarked examples or those of undocumented makers tend to sell for a good deal less than those with a well known maker's name or label. At auction one comparable to this often sell in the $200.00- $300.00 range.