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Sunday, November 10, 2013

The Enduring Beauty of Vintage Corbels

Vintage corbels are the cream of the crop when it comes to the various styles, are intricate and offer so much to the world of architecture. These fantastic creatures seem to talk because each one has its own unusual shape and hand wrought artistic design. It takes a skilled carpenter to design each piece of wood in the shape and the unique style that sometimes is made without a pattern. The artisan's personality defines the piece so unique that it reflects his own heart and soul.

They are really amazing - how many styles and shapes a person can make from wood. Some designs show a clump of grapes, others fig leaves, or the shape of a scroll. The architect who designed the pilaster acanthus corbel may have fashioned it slim for an interior designer who may want to place it beside the mantle. A maple leaf design or oak leaf design brings the outdoors into the home and offers a wide space to place a decorative vase.

Corbels were used extensively in the 18th and 19th century and reflect the special artistic designs that we admire in museums and craft shows. Many of these wood pieces have been restored and placed back into architectural design. Capturing the feeling of the craftsmen from those centuries have made wooden corbels popular today. Sometimes these can be found in old buildings or matching a capital on a column with the very same design. This is arts and crafts at its best and the homeowner may be searching for just the right touch to finish out the unique design of their new home. This is it! These designs are specially handcrafted and speak volumes of the talent of those who crafted them.

Corbels originally were used in support of a shelf or mantel or the overhang on a roof. Today they are fashioned into the buildings themselves or set apart inside as a part of the interior decoration of the home. Many look for vintage corbels in historical homes or auctions and antique flea markets. There were times in history when corbels were viewed as something to discard even though they added support to various designs of architecture of the home. There is a growing desire to find the exact corbel to fit in a special place in a living room or dining room - a special one near a fireplace to serve as support for a mantel. The craftsmanship of yesteryear can be found and put in a place that does its artistry credit today.

A rustic corbel design, sometimes called rustic wood brackets or braces, have a sleek and smooth design, and makes its own impressive statement. It can be accented by a decorative vase or small lamp which will add light and design to the corbel itself, and bring out its beauty. Another type of smooth design is the mission style wood corbel. This corbel makes a statement all its own at 90 degree angles and swirls of design in the front surrounded by indentations. It has a nice large space on top for display.           


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