Swedish Gustavian Antique furniture – forever a favourite of interior designers
The original Swedish Gustavian period under the rule of King Karl Gustav ran from approx. 1780-1820. The classic Gustavian furniture of this period is heavily influenced by the French furniture stylings of Louis XVI , the Sun King of France with whom a young Karl Gustav spent his teenage years.
The Swedish Gustavian style is less florid than the French original but retains similar features and stylings – perhaps the best of both worlds.
This is the reason that antique Swedish Gustavian furniture is always popular with Interior Designers in the UK, USA, Europe and Worldwide.
It looks great and has plenty of detail to feast your eye on without being overly decorative. The craftsmanship is superb and the hand carved cane work, scrolls, and carvings are sublime. Also they are structurally well made and so have lasted the time.
One reason Designers love Gustavian carver chairs, sofas, Gustavian dining tables and other furniture pieces is that they are very adapatable. So you can mix Gustavian furniture into almost any design setting and it will work.
For example in a very modern design setting, an antique Gustavian sofa brings a touch of class to the proceedings. But if you upholster in a crazy modern fabric, it will feel very contemporary and add a sparkle to your design ethic.
Gustavian dining tables (usually extendable) are especially popular as they are both practical to use and great to look at especially with a mixed set of antique and modern dining chairs. They also look great repainted in modern colours and textures too.
Storage is also a speciality of the Gustavian period with the 3 and 4 drawer chest of drawers being very popular. You need need to watch out though as there are lots of fakes and ‘repurposed’ pieces around that have been made to look like Swedish Gustavian ones but that are actually not the real thing.
Finally you then have the revival Gustavian periods in the mid 1800s and then the early 1900s and then the 1950s when factory made Gustavian styled pieces were made – these are great of you want the Gustavian feel but at a smaller price with the added advantage that the newer mid 20th C furniture is a lot more solid for daily use.