A superb quality early 20th century walnut dining suite in the manner of ‘Waring & Gillow’, the winding mechanism stamped ‘JOSEPH FITTER, PATENT, BRITANNIA WORKS, CHEAPSIDE, BIRMINGHAM’.
This suite consists of a superb quality extending wind out dining table with three leaves, ten chairs in the George I style (eight singles, two armchairs) and a side server/table, although not stamped by a maker, there is no doubt this originated from a company making fine quality items, such as ‘Waring & Gillow’.
The solid walnut extending table having a finely figured veneered walnut top, veneered on solid walnut leading down to a finely carved edge with a moulding below, a burr walnut frieze and further moulding with three removable leaves, the table having a winding mechanism stamped ‘JOSEPH FITTER, PATENT, BRITANNIA WORKS, CHEAPSIDE, BIRMINGHAM’ – the removable leaves and winding mechanism allowing the table to be set up in varying sizes making this suite extremely versatile.
The table is supported by four finely carved cabriole legs with lion masks to the top and foliate decoration terminating with hairy paw feet.
Joseph Fitter (born 1842), a Birmingham machinist applied for a patent in 1861 for an extending dining table, business directories in 1870 list him at this address. The patent for this particular winding mechanism allowed the table to be extended to various sizes.
The wonderful chairs consisting of eight singles and two armchairs in the George I style of vase shaped design with low relief foliate carved top rail with carved paper scrolls, the backs veneered in burr walnut, the central backsplat with carved paper scrolls, the armchairs with two shaped arm supports with foliate decoration.
The chairs having drop in shaped seats with shaped seat rails with a moulded edge in burr walnut, the chairs are unique due to them retaining the original needlework seats which are in good condition, there are some areas of wear which is to be expected, they could of course be recovered if required.
The chairs are supported on cabriole legs to the front with carved scallop shell and scroll decoration terminating with hairy hoof feet, outswept legs to the back with pad feet.
The walnut side server/table consists of a shaped burr veneered upstand with a figured walnut veneered top with carved edge, a shaped bow form drawer with fine quality burr veneers with two finely carved & turned walnut knobs, the drawer interior having a cutlery compartment, carved foliate decoration to the front corners with recessed panels to the sides with moulded edge below, supported by four finely carved cabriole legs with lion masks to the top and foliate decoration terminating with hairy paw feet.
A dining suite such as this would have been retailed in important stores in large cities such as ‘Waring & Gillow’ in Manchester, Liverpool or Lancaster, ‘Warings’ in London or even ‘Harrods’ in London.
Reference: an almost identical suite is documented in the book ‘British Antique Furniture’ by John Andrews, page 135, plate 100 which was sold by Bonhams in 2003 for in excess of £13000.00
This dining suite is in very good condition for age, is of stable construction and can go straight into a home.
Height: 29” / 73.75cm
Width: 48” / 122cm
Depth: 72” / 183cm (closed)
144” / 365.75cm (open at maximum)
Three leaves: each 24” / 61cm
Height: 33.75” / 85.75cm (of table top)
Width: 42” / 106.75cm
Depth: 23.5” / 59.75cm
Height: 40” / 101.5cm
Width: 26” / 66cm
Depth: 24” / 61cm
Seat height: 18.5” / 47cm
Height: 39.5” / 100.25cm
Width: 22” / 56cm
Depth: 22” / 56cm
Seat height: 18.5” / 47cm