Blanket Chests-Best Versatile Furniture

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Blanket chests have been making a come back as the furniture of choice in American households. This versatile furniture can be placed in all areas of your home with great results in adding that warming, welcome-home touch.

Many people would be asking right now, how could blanket chests be a versatile type of furniture? Don't they just belong at the end of your bed for blanket and quilt storage? Great question. If we look back to Early America, blanket chests usually held a prominent place in the home. Many hope chests were given a place of honor in the front room with the family bible placed upon the top and family treasures placed inside. This actually worked out well since many styles of Early American hope chests were fairly tall.
Many homes now show off blanket chests in their living rooms and dens as coffee tables and end tables. Others place these stylish chests in their front entryways to be used as sideboards to give it the 'welcome home' look. Tall blanket chests have been used in the form of buffets in the dining room. A big favorite is to use these wood chests as extra cozy seating area in front of large windows. Of course, some people still insist on placing these extremely versatile chests at the end of their beds which does give them the storage and seating they desire in their bedrooms.
Americans are buying blanket chests now not only to enhance their decors but to also add a new tradition for their families. Many people had steered away from family ties and tradition in the last couple of decades. Family traditions had ceased to be important to some or just too time consuming for other families. Now people are trying to recapture what they have been missing. Family traditions are very important since they help to hold families together. Part of this transition has included obtaining heirlooms that can be passed down to future generations. Every grandparent would love to give a cherished item to each grandchild.
Blanket chests, also known as hope chests and dowry chests, have long held sentimental value for families.These wood chests were usually given to young girls to fill with household items necessary for their future home when they married.This made a lot of sense since sewing and crocheting items by hand was very time consuming. Many of these hope chests had the name of the person who received the chest and date of presentation. This shows that families emphasized the giving of hope chests a very important event in a young girl's life.
Some lucky families have centuries old hope chests since the wood craftsmen knew how to construct long lasting furniture. Mortise and tenon or dovetail were normally the joinery styles of choice for these beautiful hardwood chests. Both joinery styles not only have wonderful design elements, but have proven to be much stronger methods for long lasting furniture than other construction types. Used in conjunction with glue, the joints of these joinery styles have been shown to be stronger than the wood used in the construction of these wonderful wooden chests. These joinery styles are much preferred over the use of nails and screws in the box construction of blanket chests since these hardware items have a tendency to eventually loosen and fall out. Sometimes heavy damage is caused in the process.
Blanket chests come in all furniture styles, but the ones that create a nice ambiance are those that replicate the antique blanket chests. German immigrants that moved to Pennsylvania, made hope chests that were handcrafted during the 18th and 19th Centuries which have beautiful styling and joinery. These blanket chests have been the favorite among collectors. Some chests had subtle outer design elements carved on the front sides which were usually floral designs. Other wood chests had elaborate,colorful designs which included flowers, people on horseback, hex designs meant to keep away bad spirits, hearts and stars.
The New England coastal area also boasted highly sought after blanket chests which replicated many of the styles of furniture made in Europe. The Queen Anne style, which was started in England, was probably the most favored. It was given a more stylish look in America. All along the New England coast, every major city had its own particular mode of Queen Anne furniture. Each city had its own foot style and preferred leg and design construction. Most furniture experts would agree that the Queen Anne Style was at its absolute best when made by American wood craftsmen.
With so many designs and heights of blanket chests to choose from, it is no wonder that Americans are really beginning to see that versatile blanket chests can be given great placement in nearly every room of their home to add warmth and to add depth to every decor style.

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