Send me an E-mail
(Please, no questions
 about value.)

Instructions for sending photographs of your pieces with your question.

Which department store originated the concept of selling artistic home furnishings?

Liberty & Co.
                     To see the answer

Arts & Crafts:
From William Morris to Frank Lloyd Wright

by Arnold Schwartzman

The author focuses on a British craftsmen, such as William Morris and Charles Rennie Mackintosh, who turned their backs on the mass production of the Industrial Revolution to form a ‘Round Table’ in order to establish a means of returning to hand-crafted products.

                                  More Books


How Was It Made? Block Printing William Morris Wallpaper

This video recreates the painstaking reproduction of a William Morris wallpaper design from 1875, a process that can take up to 4 weeks, using 30 different blocks and 15 separate colors.

Click on the title to view.

And look for other videos in selected articles.

Have Bob speak
 on antiques to your group or organization.

More Information

Can't find what
 you're looking for?

Go to our Sitemap

Find out what's coming in the
2024 Spring Edition

of the

"Art Deco World"


Share pages of this ezine with your friends using the buttons provided with each article.

Download our
Decorative Periods and Styles Chart

Read our newest glossary:

Antique Furniture Terminology
 from A to Z

courtesy of AntiquesWorldUK

Videos have
come to

The Antiques

Expand your antiques experience.

Look for videos in various articles.

Just click on the
arrow to play.


Argyle Chair
Charles Rennie Macintosh

The Other Arts & Crafts Designer
by Bob Brooke


Charles Limbert made what you call “Mission” furniture in Grand Rapids and Holland, Michigan. In fact, his furniture wasn’t constructed in the Mission Oak style, which actually was a style of Arts and Crafts furniture that developed just before the turn-of-the-20th century. This wasn’t as much of a style as what manufacturers called furniture made of oak that featured simple horizontal and vertical lines and flat panels that accentuate the grain of the wood. It was supposed to emulate furniture of the Spanish missions in California and Texas. What Charles Limbert made was furniture in the pure Arts and Crafts style.

The Arts and Crafts Movement in America originated in mid-19th-century England where the teachings of John Ruskin and William Morris popularized social reform. The movement began as a revolt against the Industrial Revolution and the dehumanization of the workers being replaced by machines. Americans learned about this movement through Gustav Stickley's magazine The Craftsman. Hand craftsmanship and a return to simplicity became hallmarks of the movement. These ideals applied not only to the lifestyle of the follower, but also to furniture and accessories in the home.

Hailed as the beginning of Modernism in the United States, Arts & Crafts interiors were in direct contrast to the preceding Victorian period of ornate decorative arts. Rectilinear forms of quartersawn oak replaced ornately carved rosewood and mahogany Victorian furniture. Mortise and tenon joints, butterfly keys, and the grain of the wood, itself, became the ornamentation on Arts & Crafts pieces.

While Gustav Stickley is best known as the leader of Arts & Crafts Movement in America, other designers also achieved recognition for their contribution to Arts & Crafts design. One of them was Charles Limbert. His company produced high quality Arts & Crafts furniture, but didn’t attempt to influence consumers about the idealized harmony of the Arts & Crafts lifestyle.

In the early 1880s, Charles Linbert began his furniture manufacturing career at the John A. Colby and Co.. in Chicago. He learned all sides of the furniture business— design, production, and marketing. An 1889 partnership with Philip Klingman established the Limbert and Klingman Chair in Grand Rapids, Michigan. Limbert and Klingman manufactured period reproduction chairs for only two years. In 1894, Limbert formed the C.P. Limbert and Company to produce Arts & Crafts furniture.

By 1906, the company had grown and moved to Holland, Michigan. Limbert called his line of furniture "Holland Dutch Arts & Crafts," most likely in reference to the local Dutch population.

Limbert's early furniture shows influences ranging from Japanese to Gothic. Some of his early china cabinets and bookcases have doors with stained glass in an Art Nouveau style.

His peak of design achievement came during 1904 to 1906 when he introduced many of his cut-out designs. Many of his de-signs were internationally inspired by the Vienna Secessionist School and designers such as Scotsman Charles Rennie Mackintosh and Austrian Josef Hoffmann. Limbert employed designers such as Hungarian architect Paul Horti and father and son Austrian designers, Louis and William J. Gohlke.

Limbert promoted his furniture as being "essentially the result of hand labor, with machinery being used where it can be employed to the advantage of the finished article." Like Stickley, he didn’t let machinery control production and emphasized the contribution of skilled craftsmen in his furniture promotions.

He constructed his furniture of quartersawn white oak, with well-executed doweled joints, keyed tenons and splined tabletops. Long, tapering corbels under arms characterize Limbert chairs. Unfortunately, Limbert didn’t extend his wood working quality to the hardware used on his pieces, most of which came from the Grand Rapids Brass Company.

Compared with Stickley's work, Limbert's designs were typically less severe and more visually interesting, usually achieved through the use of cut-outs and other elements inspired by the as English Arts & Crafts Movement and Dutch folk furniture.

His pieces were among the original furnishings of the Old Faithful Inn in Yellowstone National Park. Today, several wash stands remain in the Old House section of the Inn.

To read more of my articles, please visit my Web site.

< Back to Antiques Articles                                              Next Article >

Antiques Q&A

Antiques and More on

The Antiques Almanac on Facebook

No antiques or collectibles
are sold on this site.

How to Recognize and Refinish Antiques for Pleasure and Profit

Book: How to Recognizing and Refinishing Antiques for Pleasure and Profit
Have you ever bought an antique or collectible that was less than perfect and needed some TLC? Bob's new book offers tips and step-by- step instructions for simple maintenance and restoration of common antiques.

Read an Excerpt

Auction News
Get up to the minute news of antiques auctions around the country and the world.

Also see
The Auction Directory

Antiques News
Read breaking news stories from the world of antiques and collectibles.

Art Exhibitions
Search for art exhibitions in museums and galleries around the world.

Home | About This Site | Antiques | Collectibles | Antique Tips | Book Shop | Antique Trivia | Antique Spotlight | Antiques News  Special Features | Caring for Your Collections | Collecting | Readers Ask | Antiques Glossaries | Resources | Contact
Copyright ©2007-2023 by Bob Brooke Communications
Site design and development by BBC Web Services