8 Jacobean Furniture Design Characteristics

To help recognize Jacobean Furniture Design these are the eight basic characteristics:

  1. Jacobean and Cromwellian (the first two parts of the larger Jacobean Period) furniture has straight lines.
  2. The earlier furniture of the period was heavy and cumbersome.
  3. The construction was framed.  The basic design was a frame with panels to complete the piece.
  4. Turning the legs and stretchers developed near the end of the period, reducing the rigid appearance.
  5. Late in the period ornaments were applied although they did little to enhance the visual appeal.
  6. The early feet on Jacobean pieces were straight and square.  Late in the period the ball foot was introduced.
  7. Crude “scratch carving” was used very late in the period as were painted decorations.
  8. Very little upholstery.  Most seats were wood or rush.