Arts & Crafts Furniture
Arthur W. Simpson Arts & Crafts Lakes School English ‘Easy’ Oak Stool c. 1920.
An Arts & Crafts Lakes School English Oak ‘Easy’ Stool by Arthur W. Simpson (The Handicrafts, Kendal) c. 1920. One of the more elaborate versions of the easy stool with an h-stretcher with exposed wedged tenon joint. A classic Simpson item in much better condition than most. Featuring:
- Solid English Oak throughout.
- Latticework and studded seat leather.
- Side stretchers united by a cross stretcher with wedged through tenon joints.
- Tapering legs with chamfered edges.
- Chamfer to the underside of the rails.
Approximate dimensions are:
- Overall Height 420mm (1 foot 4 1/2 inches).
- Overall Length 410mm (1 foot 4 inches).
- Overall Depth 310mm (1 foot).
No maker’s label (quite common with Simpson items), but clearly Simpson in terms of design and quality. For labeled example of this form see Dreweatts Donnington Priory ‘British & Continental Ceramics & Decorative Arts’ auction 26th Oct 2010 lot 443 and Moore Allen & Innocent ‘Antique & General’ auction 5th Mar 2010 Lot 38.
Very good condition with tight joints, no splits in the leather and original finish. A few minor knocks and marks. If you wish to have further specific photographs or talk to us for a more detailed condition report then please do not hesitate to contact us.
Arthur W. Simpson and his Kendal based furniture making company 'The Handicrafts' was a renowned arts and crafts maker associated with very high quality hand crafted furniture, who worked with by members of the Artworker's Guild, such as Voysey and Baillie-Scott. Today, items of Simpson furniture are hard to find and avidly collected. Materials, workmanship and design are always of the highest quality.
The most British of woods, that can produce really special results. English oak has been used for hundreds of years to construct everything from sea-going vessels to fine furniture. Although oak grows widely across Europe and North America, craftsmen continue to cherish English oak which grows more slowly than its foreign counterparts giving it strength, durability. Quarter sawn boards are very straight grained and have distinctive growth rings and medullary rays that give a very beautiful effect as well as being renowned for their superior stability and strength.
The Arts & Crafts Lakes School was a development of the Arts and Craft Cotswold School. The most significant designers and makers were Arthur Simpson, in Kendal, Stanley Webb Davies at Windermere and the Keswick School of Industrial Arts. Peter Hall of Staveley still produces furniture in this tradition. The Lakes School maintained the ideals with its simple lines, attention to the finest of details, the use of beautiful locally materials and the focus traditional tools and techniques. In fact Stanley Webb Davies' workshop didn't use any power tools at all, even to cut logs from timber! The dominant material was English Oak and typical decorative details often include exposed joints and subtle carved details.
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