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Antique Dressing Tables, also known as ‘Vanity Table’ evolved from the washstand. In the mid 18th Century the antique washstand became a piece of free standing furniture made of Mahogany. It had twin flap square tops which open from the centre to reveal a fitted interior with sunken bowl, dressing compartments and a rising mirror that lifts up from the back. This then led to antique dressing tables being made much larger in the Regency period with rectangular tops, sometimes with hinged backs and fitted with mirrors on the inside, above central basins and other compartments. From 1830 on-wards cabinet makers started to add a free standing mirror to sit on the washstand and then this led to the dressing table design. The 19th century brought about new designs such as the duchess dressing table, with curves and lots of small drawers. The Victorian and Edwardian period introduced new woods such as Walnut and Oak and favoured a dressing table in a bedroom, usually as part of a bedroom suite, matching with the wardrobe and bed. These antique dressing tables were built by very good cabinet makers like waring and Gillows, Maple and Co, Liberty and co. or Heals. Have a look below at our lovely examples available for sale.
Below are a few examples of previously sold dressing tables but if any particular style looks of interest please let us know as we do get many similar designs in stock and we can try to locate something similar.
The best examples from the 19th Century were either in the Cheval design or in the unusual French Empire style in Figured mahogany having an arched tilting mirror with beautiful turned column supports and brass decorative detailing.
The Arts and Craft era created unusual designs in woods such as Magnificent ‘Burr’ Pollard Oak with decorative carvings. Dressing Tables of this design are fabulous quality, the best having the original tilting mirror with lovely slight foxing evident, small jewellery drawers and the original copper handles.
The free standing designs are called toilet mirrors, they are small so ideal to be placed in that perfect spot like your bathroom or bedroom. The best were from the Regency period with a tilting mirror, brass acorn finials and in unusual shapes like the bow front.