Is Your Antique Windsor Chair a Fake?

Before you pay a pretty penny for an antique Windsor chair, hear what Maureen Stanton, the author of the book Killer Stuff and Tons of Money, has to say. She told Lisa Hix about a carpenter named Wesley Swanson, who is a master at building "antiques."

When he’s building a chair, he takes a long time and does everything very carefully. He takes perfectly green wood, and he has a way of aging it so that it’s out-of-round as if it’s aged a hundred years. He has a way of rusting up hardware. He’ll buy scraps and parts from people, or he’ll find an old piece of furniture, like another chair. And he can use the wood, nails, or hardware in the new piece that he’s making to make it look real.

But he has made an old-looking Windsor chair of 100 percent new wood. He’s developed techniques for aging paints with blow dryers and things that. It’s hard to spot the fake aging process in wood unless you X-ray it. It’s hard to tell it’s been done to the paint unless you put the chair through chemical analysis.

Read more about fake antiques in an interview with Stanton at Collector's Weekly. Link


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Swanson says "If no one can tell and people are enjoying these as if they were real, what’s the difference?"

When I read that, I don't think it means people should be okay paying high prices for the fakes. They are being misled, which is wrong. What I think it means is that people should reconsider the value they have attached to the originals.
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