Quick-drying and easy to clean material with a wool-like feel and elasticity. It is resistant to moths, oils and chemicals.
Aniline dyes are transparent dyes used on the highest-quality leathers. These dyes penetrate the entire thickness of the leather, enhancing the natural character of the hide and allowing the actual surface grain and markings to show.
Finishing process that gives leather rich highlights and the appearance of age. The resulting handcrafted patina is produced by a careful application of dyes and sanding.
A French term for a design or motif that is cut out and applied to another surface as decoration.
The horizontal support below a tabletop or the seat rail of a chair, often carved or otherwise ornamented.
The French version of the wardrobe. A freestanding closet, usually with shelves and/or a hanging rod. Differs from a wardrobe in that a wardrobe often has drawers beneath the closet section.
A streamlined, geometric style of architecture and home furnishings popular in the 1920s and 1930s. Characterized by rounded or "waterfall" fronts, chrome hardware and glass tops. Originated in 1925, at the Paris Exhibition of Decorative and Industrial Arts.
ARTS AND CRAFTS
A British furniture style emphasizing traditional, handmade wood crafting. Simple lines, minimal decoration. Featuring wooden joinery and rustic hammered hardware. Widely influential, giving rise to Mission style in the United States.
A small chest of drawers, usually 24" to 36" wide by 30" to 36" tall, sometimes used in pairs.
A decorative hardware piece consisting of an elongated oval handle attached to a back plate on two sides.
A dining piece including an open top section with display space for dishes, cookware and glassware, numerous shelves and an often-enclosed bottom storage section.
The carved shape of a bird's or animal's claw grasping a ball. Popularized in the first half of the 18th Century, it is believed to be a symbol of world power, adapted from the Chinese motif of a dragon's claw holding a pearl.
A narrow strip of inlaid veneer often used as a border on tabletops and drawer fronts and usually of a contrasting color to the rest of the piece.
Small strips of wood that are connected through a tongue and groove joint to give the panel an antique appearance.
An upholstered low arm chair with an exposed wooden frame and a wide cushioned seat. Made popular in the Louis XV and Louis XVI periods.
Non-perpendicular surface edges on glass that allow numerous bands of colors to pierce through, creating the effects of a prism.
Bevels, or non-perpendicular surface edges, with lines of connection between planes that add texture, dimension and character to the mirror's surface.
Bi-cast leather is 100% split leather topped with a durable polyurethane film coating that offers a high, glossy sheen along with a regular grain pattern. It is less susceptible to staining due to the polyurethane film coating.
A blend of two or more fabrics to create unlimited combination of durability, softness and patterns. By combining natural and man-made fibers the result will be a fabric that is longer wearing than one comprised of only natural fibers.
A design used on chests and other case pieces in which the front is divided vertically into three panels, with the center recessed between the outer panels. Associated with John Goddard and the Newport School of the 18th Century.
Having outward swells and curves. Used to describe a surface, such as the sides of a case piece.
Attractive, durable and easy to clean.
A rounded, bonnet-shaped crown on a highboy, secretary, china cabinet, etc., prevalent in 17th and 18th Century English and American furniture.
Richly decorative designs made of colored silk fibers. It has an interwoven motif, usually of raised scrollwork, figures or flowers, often with gold or silver embroidered embellishments.
An architectural crown treatment on furniture such as china cabinets, highboys and headboards, consisting of a triangular or heart-shaped pediment with an open center and decorative finial.
Originally, any table or cupboard used for serving meals. Today it may have cabinet or drawer storage and is often paired with a hutch to create a china cabinet.
A round foot flattened at the top and bottom. It may be wooden or upholstered. Also known as an onion foot.
Decorative veneer made from a burl, a knot-like tree growth. When cut, a burl shows an intricately figured grain and is prized for its distinctive look.
An upholstery technique in which fabric is stitched down through the padding in tufted knots, often in a pattern, and then decorated with covered buttons.
A carved, S-curved furniture leg prevalent in the 18th Century. Also referred to as a Queen Anne leg.
An 18th Century English and American design featuring a serpentine back that sweeps up from the arms to a curve in the center. Is sometimes reversed to curve downward in the center.
Furniture, including chests, dressers, china cabinets, desks and bookcases, designed to store clothes or other objects.
A rectangular chest built of or lined with cedar in order to keep blankets and linens protected from moths and other insects. Sometimes referred to as a hope chest.
Drawers that offer the added benefit of clothing preservation. Aromatic properties of cedar serve as a natural pest deterrent, keeping moths and other insects away.
Fabric made from piles wound around a securely bound core to create a soft and velvety feel.
A full-length, free-standing mirror mounted within a rectangular frame and designed to tilt for optimum viewing angles.
Named for Thomas Chippendale, this furniture style features delicately carved ornamentation on cabriole legs and chair backs, as well as on secretaries and other case pieces.
Originally a shelf-like table fixed to a wall and supported by one or two front legs. Today, it generally refers to any table intended to be placed against a wall or behind a sofa.
Organizes tangled, unsightly wires in a discrete manner by keeping each cord in place.
Increase sturdiness and durability. This method of joinery offers the best strength and practicality.
Corrected-grain leather has been buffed to a smooth finish, which removes undesirable blemishes. It is then stamped to apply texture and/or embossed to restore a natural looking grain pattern.
A serving table with doors below, much like a buffet. Has evolved to be used in offices, providing a work surface and storage.
A decorative strip used along the tops of cabinets to add texture.
A heavy, lustrous-sheen fabric, woven with elaborate patterns and commonly used for traditional upholstery pieces. Named after the city of Damascus and introduced to Europe by Marco Polo.
Molding with a pattern of projecting blocks, used in architecture and in furniture design.
An artificially produced finish that simulates the character marks of aging and use, such as small scratches or holes. Also known as an antique finish â view our video on Facebook or YouTube for a descriptions and examples of types of distressing qualities.
A tall, uninterrupted skirt resembling a dress in its craftsmanship, located on the bottom of a sofa or similar piece.
DROP-IN COIL SPRINGS
Offering high quality and strong support, drop-in coil springs are metal spring units that are made separately by machines and then placed in and attached to the frame.
One of the strongest and most decorative joinery methods. Interlocking dovetails maximize storage space and ensure drawers won't loosen with use.
Used to reinforce joints and provide support to the piece as a whole, dowel pins are inserted into a drilled hole and secured with glue. A good dowel joint employs a fluted dowel, which prevents air pockets from forming in the flue and keeping the wood from splitting.
Down-blend fillers are some of the most luxurious materials. They create loose, fluffy cushions that retain their plush feel, while easily conforming to the desired shape.
One of the strongest man-made fibers. It has a great ability to maintain its shape and colors without fading over extensive use and cleanings. It is also resistant to moths, oils and chemicals.
A dust-proofed drawer makes keeping your items organized and clean an easier task. The horizontal board prevents dust and contents from passing through to another drawer, collecting outside of the drawer itself. It also prevents the contents of one drawer from being visible when another drawer is removed.
A French style of the early 19th Century, characterized by majestic scale and mahogany wood with carved motifs such as swans, chimeras or foliage. Upholstery is overstuffed and features strong shades of red, green, blue, yellow and deep brown.
A storage and display piece with open shelves to showcase collectibles and other small items.
Often associated with neoclassicism, Federal style is composed of refined rectilinear framing with an emphasis on surface inlay rather than carving. Distinguishing features include square or turned tapered legs that are reeded rather than fluted, spaded and flared bracket feet, and the use of straight, oval or serpentine lines in the formation of inlay patterns.
Protect your belongings from nicks or scratches caused by knocking against hard drawer walls.
Pierced ornamentation, usually of metal, but also used to refer to wood fretwork and elements of cast iron furniture.
FINGER JOINT SEAT FRAME
This ensures exceptional durability and is one of the strongest methods of constructing wooden seat frames. Usually seen in frames with curved or rounded corners, this technique employs interlacing fingers of wood that are glued together.
Shallow vertical channels or grooves, usually with rounded sections, carved on a column, pilaster or any other vertical surface.
Carved wood ornamentation consisting of short intersecting lines in geometric patterns resembling a lattice. A favored accent of Chippendale style.
Made only from top-grain leather, this types of leather has not been corrected in any way, meaning its actual grain is intact. These natural hides provide optimum fiber strength, which in turn provides superior durability. The natural grain will also breathe and wear better than most leathers.
A raised rim or railing around the top of a table or other furniture to prevent small items from falling off the surface.
A lattice of wood or metal used to protect glass doors on secretaries, bookcases, china cabinets and entertainment armoires.
A tall 18th Century American case piece with four or five drawers, a cornice or pediment crown and a legged base.
INDEPENDENT SPRING SEATING SYSTEM
Unlike other spring systems, the deck under each seat is designed separately, eliminating disruption or "lean-over" caused by sitting next to another person. This ensures a completely personal level of comfort.
A decorative design created by embedding pieces of one material into another, usually forming a flat plane, such as a tabletop.
Reversible fabric with a woven pattern, named after Joseph Jacquard, inventor of the punch-card loom used to weave it in the 1700s.
A discrete and practical storage for jewelry.
A 100% natural fiber that is twice as durable as cotton.
Rectangular arms with a box-style upper section, resembling the shape of a keyhole.
A fully padded, generally skirted design characterized by square seat cushions and trim, lowered arms accented with a slight roll. Often associated with transitional styling.
An affordable, quality alternative to all-leather furniture, this uses top-grain leather upholstery except on the sides and back, where a high-grade matching vinyl is used — see also MATCHING SPLITS.
Help keep your furniture sturdy and protected from premature wear when the floor below your furniture is not level. These are pegs that screw into the bottom of furniture legs and adjust each corner to a balanced height.
A fabric made from natural vegetable fibers that is sturdy and stiff with a natural sheen. It can conduct heat and softens with each cleaning.
A dressing or serving table or a low chest of drawers, set on legs, originating in 18th Century America.
A technique in which various types of wood are applied to a surface to produce a picture with a natural theme, such as flowers and birds.
Offering superior comfort and resiliency, a Marshall unit is formed when coil springs are secured into individual pockets.
An affordable, quality alternative to all-leather furniture, this uses top-grain leather upholstery except on the sides and back, where a high-grade matching vinyl is used — see also LEATHER-VINYL MATCH.
Durable, stain resistant material that is easy to maintain in high traffic homes.
An American furniture style of the early 20th Century and an offshoot of the Arts and Crafts movement. Furniture is simple and rectilinear in form, usually of oak with exposed wooden joints.
A style of design, inspired by the bold geometry of Art Deco design, popular in Europe and the United States between 1920 and 1940.
MORTISE AND TENON
Joinery that is a variation of tongue and groove joints and are used in table legs, chairs, chests and drawers to provide added strength.
Adds dimension, color, character and smoothness to wood. It also preserves the wood's natural beauty.
A European furniture design characterized by forms from ancient Greek and Roman art and architecture and often using light wood, ebony and gold.
Zigzag-shaped springs that offer comfort and support derived from the springs' resiliency. Attached to the frame with steel clips or tacks, these springs are then connected by helical springs — see also SINUOUS SPRINGS.
A top-grain leather, nu-buck is as luxurious as it is durable. Nu-buck is produced by buffing the top layer to create a velvet-like feel, then richly dyed and treated with special oils and waxes to ensure each hide will age well and grow in character with use.
An easy to clean, extremely resilient and durable fabric.
Fabric that Is resistant to stain, moisture, mildew, abrasion and sunlight exposure. It is also comfortable, quick-drying and efficient as a heat insulator.
Similar to marquetry, parquetry is a veneer technique used to create geometric patterns and designs. Most often appears in hardwood floors and ornate chessboards or tabletops.
A 20th Century furniture style associated with a small, square occasional table. Also refers to upholstered armless dining chairs and skirtless, rounded sofa rails. Named for the Parsons School of Design in New York.
A natural color and/or finish produced in wood and leather through age, wear and repeated polishing. The effect can also be created artificially.
A tabletop supported by a single or double pedestal base.
An arched, heart-shaped or triangular ornamental element usually placed atop a tall case piece. Simulates the gable of a classic Greek or Roman temple.
Also referred to as painted leather, pigmented leather is finished with a solid pigment coating that covers imperfections and produces consistent color and texture. Pigment coating increases the leather's durability and color consistency, while adding stiffness to the hide.
A long section of a pillar or column set into or against furniture or a wall.
A separate or semi-attached extra layer of cushioning added to the top of a seat cushion, arm or mattress.
A synthetic material made to look like leather that is easy to clean and gives added strength.
Refers to a look associated with quality leather that gives the leather an antique, traditional finish. For this style, full-grain, aniline-dyed leather is waxed or oiled and then pulled, producing variations of lighter and darker areas.
As the world's first bio-based foam, PreserveÂ® is not only an eco-friendly alternative to conventional petroleum-based foam, but is also a more comfortable and supportive alternative due to the layered technology. The core of each PreserveÂ® cushion is made up of 1.8-density supportive soy-based foam. That layer is sandwiched between two layers of super soft caps for better resiliency, then wrapped in a thin layer of fiber to reduce crushing. The result keeps its shape better while leaving a smaller environmental footprint.
Also known as full-aniline, naked-aniline or naked leather, this process has no additional coloring added. By far the softest and supplest of leathers and richest in natural color, pure aniline also has the least natural resistance to stains, so a protective treatment is strongly recommended.
Name given to furniture styles popularized during the reign of England's Queen Anne (1702-1714), including the cabriole leg with spoon foot, shell carvings and splat-back chairs.
A strong vine-like palm native to Asia used to make caning and wicker.
Absorbent, comfortable and colorfast fabric.
A series of semicircular, ornamental grooves, either flush with or raised above the surface they decorate, which run the length of the surface. Commonly seen on chair and table legs and poster beds during the later 18th Century. The reverse of fluting.
A 19th Century style of furniture known for its combination of small-scaled, well-proportioned curves and straight lines. Named for the regency of George IV, Prince of Wales.
Convex molding designed with a series of indentations to resemble a length of rope.
A concave curved leg that resembles a cavalry sword.
A two tone effect with a mottled appearance that adds depth and character to the leather.
This boxed-cushion, bench-style design is named for its loose or unattached, large-scale matching or coordinating back pillows. May be skirted or unskirted.
A slant-top desk with a chest base and door hutch developed in the late 17th and 18th Centuries in England and America. Also known as secrÃ©taire.
From the French word semaine, meaning week, a tall, narrow chest with seven drawers, one for each day of the week.
Also called aniline-plus or protected aniline, this is aniline-dyed top-grain leather that has been coated with matching pigment and/or other topical finishes, like a clear sealant topcoat with a slight sheen, for color consistency and added protection. Semi-anilines are sometimes considered to be the best of both worlds, offering some degree of protection while still retaining the softness and natural beauty of the leather.
Furniture or trim treatment formed by alternating convex and concave curves.
The predecessor of the sofa, developed as an elongated arm chair. May be wooden or upholstered.
A 19th Century design form developed by the American religious group of the same name and based on the belief that "beauty rests on utility." Furniture has clean, simple lines with no ornamentation.
Named for Thomas Sheraton, this style favors light, rectilinear forms with flat inlay and painted accents, as well as geometric veneer patterns. The sheaf-back chair is a popular example.
An American and British design with an open-framed back shaped like a shield.
Wheeled tracks along the sides of drawers that guide the drawer along the inner wall that allow for smooth, directed drawer movement and alignment.
An auxiliary dining room case piece used for serving with drawers and cupboards for storage.
Fits right into a china cabinet or curio and provides rows for every type of silverware to keep it separate and protected.
Zigzag-shaped springs that offer comfort and support derived from the springs' resiliency. Attached to the frame with steel clips or tacks, these springs are then connected by helical springs — see also NO-SAG SPRINGS.
SMOOTHLY FINISHED DRAWERS
By being smoothly finished on the interior, a drawer is able to prevent splinters and snags.
A chair with a single central support on the back, generally shaped, pierced or otherwise decorated. Also called a fiddle-back chair.
Split-grain leather comes from the bottom layers of the hide and is just as durable, though not as supple as top-grain.
The foot on a turned leg that resembles an 18th Century spoon.
One or more crossbars connecting the legs of a piece of furniture, in order to strengthen and stabilize the construction.
A fabric created by buffing the lower layer, this classic leather is softer than most and feels very similar to velvet.
Hand-woven decorative pictorial designs appear on both sides of heavy ornamental fabric. Originates from the Orient and is famous for its presence in medieval culture.
TONGUE AND GROOVE
Joinery that is common in flat surfaces that allows pieces to fit together so that the seam is not visible.
The French name for "candle stand," a stand originally used to hold a candle or lamp. Today it refers to a lamp with a tall central column supported by a small platform, or four legs, that directs light upward.
This type of leather is the uppermost layer of a hide and is often referred to as full-grain. Full-grain leather has not been corrected, and its actual grain is intact. Top-grain leather is of the highest quality and is the most preferred for furniture. Only higher-quality leathers with few imperfections can be classified into this category.
Defined by understated, restrained approach to line and material and refined shapes of the modern era with established references to the past, this style is versatile in that it can easily adapt to different décors.
A table supported by centered legs connected by a horizontal beam. Originally designed for easy disassembly and movement.
Reinvented by contemporary styling, a tuxedo silhouette features high, straight or flared arms that match or nearly match the height of the back. Arms are designed at, or close to, the same height as the sofa or chair back.
Has diagonal ribbed weaves that prevent the fabric from retaining dirt. The two most notable variations are herringbone and denim.
Thin slices of wood cut through the cross or vertical section of a log, then glued together at right angles over a thick central core to create a pattern.
VISCO ELASTIC FOAM
A non-allergenic spring-free cushion material that absorbs movement, gives you better circulation and has great air flow.
A waxed finish helps condition leather to prevent it from drying out and offers protection without detracting from the natural feel, or "hand" of the hide.
Consists of individual fabric strips interlacing together in upholstered furniture to create a more comfortable, giving seat and a longer cushion life.
A wooden chair design featuring a curved back with thin spindles and a saddle seat.
A high-back, upholstered easy chair with panels or wings projecting forward from the sides of the back and curving downward to meet the rolled arms. The wings were originally designed to protect a sitter from drafts, and the style has remained popular since the late 17th Century.
WOOD-ON-WOOD DRAWER GUIDES
Coated with wax for a smooth action.