An extremely rare Bakelite cabriole leg occasional table with a smooth, chamfered and bevel edged top.
Bakelite was the new modern material of the 1930s and was usually applied to contemporary designs. Here it has been press-moulded to make a traditional style occasional table with Queen Anne style cabriole legs, mimicking reproduction antique furniture of the day. An experiment that didn't catch on - presumably because those that liked 'antiques' liked them made of wood. Nevertheless, this table demonstrates the experimentation that was taking place in the brave new world of the early twentieth century, as it embraced its new-found love: plastic. This unique table is in a rich, dark bitter-chocolate brown, has a wonderful high-polish finish, and is in stunning condition.
This item has been recently purchased from an important private Bakelite collection.
History of Bakelite
In 1909, Belgian chemist Leo Baekland created the first entirely synthetic plastic, calling it Bakelite. Its properties were revolutionary for it was resistant to heat and didn’t conduct electricity, making it really good insulator, and therefore particularly useful to the automotive and electrical industries emerging at the time. Lightweight and durable; sleek and stylish; affordable and convenient; it could also be moulded into every shape imaginable; and the 1920s and 30s saw Bakelite embrace modernism, where it was used in jewelry, lamps, desk sets, clocks, radios, telephones, kitchenware, and all manner of everyday objects - such as table tops. Rarely was it used as a construct for a complete piece of furniture, and especially not on pieces that drew their design references from the past, as it is here.
Country of origin: UK
Dimensions: Height 46cm Length 50cm Depth 35cm
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