by John Werry on October 5, 2007

If you love antiques of all types as I do, stop by my brother’s Japanese Antique Furniture blog, kagutou.com. I guess it runs in the family. He was a cabinet maker for many years and specialized in producing Japanese furniture so he has intimate knowledge of these pieces. He currently lives in Waikiki, is a Japanese chef, and speaks Japanese as well, so he is knee-deep in it…

{ 4 comments… read them below or add one }

Wm. Jason Flatt October 8, 2007 at 8:16 pm

I’m surprised that more asian furniture hasn’t been marketed towards the American owners of Victorian homes. My wife & I just purchased (or ordered) a Chinese armoire/cabinet to hide our living room tv in. Given as that our house was built in 1881, the aesthetic movement would have been in full swing, complete with the asian-influenced designs. The cabinet that we purchased is, itself, an antique from around 1880. I’m usually a purist when it comes to antiques, but we have requested that the cabinet be modified such that the original doors are turned into pocket doors (open, then slide in) and the shelves are moved around a bit. The armoires from Fujian province seem to, in my opinion, best reflect Victorian tastes what with their pierced carvings & what I loosely refer to as painted Italianate arch designs. I’m no expert on asian antiques, but have a look at what I’m talking about…


John W October 9, 2007 at 8:02 pm

I agree, but they apparently don’t command huge sums, so that is why you probably don’t see much. There was a signed Herter Brothers Japanesque cabinet up for sale recently on Ebay and it closed at $350. Not sure if it actually sold at that level. I think it is the same one that Lise Bohm is selling for $6,500: http://www.goantiques.com/detail,japanesque-mahogany-music,1342169.html


Wm. Jason Flatt October 10, 2007 at 8:38 pm

I suspect that Lise Bohm is charging the first $6,000 for the Herter Bros name. Regardless, I think that a savvy importer of asian antiques could make some inroads with readers of magazines like “Victorian Homes” if they marketed their wares towards Aesthetic Movement niche buyers. My wife & I will probably just have the one ‘asian’ antique and decorate the rest of the room with some nice Turkish chairs and typical low-end Eastlake stuff. …throw some Bradbury aesthetic wall & ceiling paper up in 10 years or so and call it good.

Speaking of ebay vs. retail, did you see your “Credenza Gone Wild” sold at auction for under $7k and was immediately re-posted on ebay by a New Orleans dealer for over $12k? See item # 290166420495 (completed Oct 7, no bids). No mention of a “missing gallery” from the retailer. Best of luck to them.


John W October 10, 2007 at 8:46 pm

Yeah, I had seen that the credenza went for that. Must not have been as impressive in person or the live bidders might have taken it higher. I liked the piece but it would have looked so over-the-top compared to the collective furniture that I have now. Then there’s the issue of wanting to spend $7k on a credenza…


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