Antique English Windsor Chairs
Over the years there have been many different styles of chairs that have been popular. Some of the styles from yesteryear are still much sought after today, and this fact certainly applies to antique English Windsor chairs.
Even if you haven’t heard of the antique English Windsor chair before, you will certainly be familiar with the style once you see it. This is a style where the back and the legs of the chair are entirely separate from one another. They are both inserted into the seat from the top and the bottom, which is in direct contrast to the typical design of many chairs today. Modern chairs generally have one continuous piece that forms both the back and the rear legs of the chair.
You will also notice that the back of an English Windsor chair is divided by the arms of the chair. One piece of wood is carved and bent around to form both arms, and it cuts across the back of the chair, forming this very distinctive feature that can be seen on all antique English Windsor chairs.
From the simple to the more complex
It is fair to say that some English Windsor chairs are more complex in design than others. The most familiar of them all is the classic design described above; this is the proper armchair design. However you can also get so called side chairs, which are more like modern dining chairs without the arms. They do still have the distinctive spindles going up the back of the chair though, so you can easily identify them as being part of the English Windsor design.
There is some controversy over the origin of this particular chair, although it is generally said that the name derives from the town of Windsor itself. Some say the chair was designed for use in the gardens of Windsor Castle, although there is little evidence to confirm or deny this. It does make a nice story though!
Chairs for indoors and outdoors
It is safe to say however that the English Windsor chair became extremely popular back in the 1700s. By the time the 1800s beckoned, the chair was commonly seen both indoors and outdoors, depending on the needs and desires of its owners. There can be few other chairs in history that have had quite the same effect on society as this one.
Of course they are now enjoying a second life and are much sought after by collectors. Indeed if their original owners could see just how much people pay for the original chairs today, they might need to sit down to get over the shock. Four figure sums (in British pounds) are by no means uncommon.
Indeed those who are looking for a chair in this design may want to invest in a real antique rather than getting a modern version of this chair. You just never know where an antique has been, or how many other people have enjoyed the beauty of an English Windsor chair in centuries gone by.