Antique secretary desks: A look back at some amazing old furniture

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Note: This article may feature affiliate links, and purchases made may earn us a commission at no extra cost to you. Find out more here.

Artistically-shaped furniture

The shops are running over with the most tempting and artistic furniture. The craze for old pieces is keener than ever, and the woman who is furnishing her home sighs for mahogany and antique oak.

The tall, stately dressing case is a thing of the past, or at least its medieval parentage removes it from favor. The small mirror, perched on the top of an old-fashioned sewing table or on a low dressing table, is the order of the hour.

Antique secretary desk from 1887 (1)

It has one great advantage, which is that it necessitates that fair dames should sit when they arrange their locks. Few things are more tiresome and unwholesome than standing to comb and brush the hair.

Four-post bedsteads, carved and canopied, and dainty, spindle-legged chairs embellish the most up-to-date sleeping apartments. This is truly an age of craving for all that is antique.

Quaint old washstands have flowered china toilet sets sunken in their tops, and Recamier lounges, weighted down with pillows, occupy space in charming boudoirs.

Mahogany cabinet-topped secretary writing desk - Providence, Maryland (1775)

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Women no longer answer letters at wee little writing desks — they also are of too recent parentage — and their places are filled by dignified tall secretaries, with quantities of secret drawers and a bookcase above.

A room recently furnished with old mahogany has its walls faced with yellow denim. The paint is white, and the hard wood floor is stained to a deep green. On it are Japanese rugs in notes of green and yellow.

Desk made of mahogany and antique oak (1886)

Front and side view of old cabinet-style secretary desk with drawers

The high-post bed is veiled with dotted muslin. A Recamier divan is played at the foot of the bed, and it is upholstered with old green brocade. The windows are screened with muslin curtains, and over them hangs a drapery of green tissue silk. The small chairs are covered with yellow leather.

Antique secretary desk from 1887 (2)



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