Carving on antique furniture is basically cutting into the wood to make decorative patterns and has been done for many centuries. Below are some examples of different carving used on antique furniture.

Acanthus Carving


An acanthus is a leafy carved ornament in the top of the columns of the Corinthian. They are found in mahogany furniture from the Georgian, Victorian and Edwardian periods.




Shell carving


Shell carving is basically carving in the wood to look like a shell. This type of carving was often used in early period and early Georgian furniture.




carved apron



An apron is a carved decorative feature situated below the seat rail of a chair, settee, cabinets and tables, it can be shaped like on this wonderful card table.




carved dental moulding

Dentil or dentil moulding is the moulding under the cornice consisting of a series of small rectangular shaped blocks or “teeth”.



carved corbel





A corbel is a decorative bracket that can be seen on alot of bookcases and they are usually carved by hand





Cabochon carving



Cabochon carving is a carved motif consisting of a ball shape usually surrounded by leaf ornament.




shield shaped carving


A carved cartouche is a flat oval or shield shape with a carved inscription or monogram in the centre.





carved moulding



Carved moulding is a strip of wood used for ornamental trim.




Carved gadrooning


Carved gadrooning is a series of small carved twisted carvings used around the edges of antique furniture.



pie crust edge carving


Piecrust carving is similar but this has carved scalloped edges that looks like the crust of a pie.




lion paw carving




Carved monopodium is a carved support with a lion head and claw feet.





half barrel carving



A lunette is a semicircular motif. It can also be in the form of a half barrel carving, usually on card tables.



carved linen fold


Linenfold Carving is carving in the shape of folded linen. This is also known as Ruffle carving as it looks like gathered cloth or material.





lion head carving



Lion Mask carving is a carved lion head.





rams head carving



Rams head carving is basically a rams head.




Knuckled arm carving



Knuckled arm carving is Knuckle-shaped carving at the end of an arm of an antique chair, sometimes known as Scrolled knuckle arms.





Rosette carving



Rosette carving is a circular carving like rose petals.




Diaper carving




Diaper carving is diamond shaped lines with dots or forms inside.




blind fret work carving


Fretwork Carving is small cut out wood shapes but blind Fretwork Carving is carved onto the wood.







A carved patera is a round or oval carved motif sometimes with segments radiating from the middle.





lion head carving



Lions Mask Carving is a carved ornamental feature in the form of a lion’s head.




Shell carving



Scallop shell carving is a semi-circular shell with ridges. This ornamental motif was common in furniture design during the Queen Anne and Georgian periods.




Rice carving is a decorative carved motif resembling the grain of the rice plant.

A carved medallion is a carved motif of rounded or oval shape, can be carved rounded floral.

Finger rolled carving is carved moulding in the shape of a finger.

Ball flower carving is three or four carved lobes with a ball in the middle.