C1860 French Napoleon III Salon Chair with Butterflies
This charming Second Empire chair is in walnut, carved profusely with flowers on the cresting rail, seat rail and knees. The rear legs are neatly pegged with the tiny round pegs characteristic of the period. These are vestigial, leftovers from the robust square or multifaceted pegs of the 18th century, but they make for robust construction.
The lavish floral decoration reminds us of the character of the Empress Eugenie, whose devotion to the Martyr-Queen Marie Antoinette so strongly influenced furniture design during her glittering reign (1852-1870). The taste for shiny black furniture at this time was in mourning for the wife of Louis XVI.
In reference to this we have upholstered this wonderful chair in a black satin brocade woven with colourful butterfies. (As Cat owners we always favour brocades, silks, satins and jacquards, for practicality, as cat hair does not stick to them. Velvets and similar are high maintenance velcro to cat hair!)
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