The Lost Stickley Table

A one-of-a-kind table reappears after 100 years.
By Robert W. Lang
Pages: 56-61

From the November 2006 issue #158
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Most original Gustav Stickley furniture can be easily identified by model number. This was, after all, factory-made furniture and pieces were designed to be made in multiples. When you come across an antique, you can look it up in an old catalog to identify it. However, the only known example of this small table appeared at a Sotheby’s auction in late 2004.

This uncataloged piece was likely a prototype, never put into factory production. What makes it unique is the front and back splay of the legs. It’s this slight angle that gives this table more character than straight-legged versions that were mass produced. It’s also the likely reason this piece never got beyond the prototype stage.

This table features many of the Stickley design elements that appear in other pieces. There isn’t much material in it, but there is a good deal of labor-intensive, headscratching joinery involved. This probably made it too expensive to be marketed at a reasonable price, but that does make it a great project on which to practice and develop joinery skills.

From the November 2006 issue #158
Buy this issue now