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Doris, Antiques Appraiser
Category: Antiques
Satisfied Customers: 9938
Experience:  Antiques store owner 10+yrs.Best of City Two Years. Collector 56+yrs.USPAP compliant. Member AOA.Founded part of antiques, silver & art collection at local museum.
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I have a mahogany pie crust, bird cage, variform pedestal,

Customer Question

Hi, I have a mahogany pie crust, bird cage, variform pedestal, tilt top table. What's interesting is the legs are dove tailed into the pedestal with the legs having quite a lot of carving. Can you tell me anything about this table?
JA: I always love having an appraiser look at my stuff. Sometimes its turned out to be surprisingly valuable.
Customer: Do you do that?
JA: Is there anything else important you think the Antiques Appraiser should know?
Customer: Other than a picture, I"m not sure what else to describe
Submitted: 10 months ago.
Category: Antiques
Expert:  Doris replied 10 months ago.

Hello and welcome! My name is Doris.
I have been an antiques and art collector as well as dealer and appraiser for over 56 years.
I will be pleased to help you. Please know I do not send pop-ups. Thoughtful responses take time.

Photos are almost always required to give an accurate assessment.

Can you send me at least one photo?

To send photos you may use the "add files" in the blue box link on your reply page or the "paper clip" found in the toolbar you see on your reply page.
Please do not send in ZIP format. The jpg or jpeg format works best.

An explanation of this method can be found here:

Kind regards,

Customer: replied 10 months ago.
Here's a picture. If you need more I can take various angles, Dennis
Expert:  Doris replied 10 months ago.

Please may I have photos of the bird cage and feet and the bottom of the table?

What are the screws like? Are they sunken in? Do they appear to be machine made or handmade? How many are there?

Kind regards,


Customer: replied 10 months ago.
It looks like it was refinished and refitted with new brass. Look at the bottom of the table where the bird cage sets - there's no finish there. Also, see the bottom of the table dove tails.
Expert:  Doris replied 10 months ago.

Thank you for the information and photos. These really help.

Please allow me time to research the data required by your question, calculate current values and write my answer.

I want you to have a well-researched answer.

I should return within an hour.

I thank you in advance for your patience.

Kind regards,


Customer: replied 10 months ago.
Doris, forgot a picture of the top. Isn't really a pie crust is it?
Expert:  Doris replied 10 months ago.

No. It really is not pie crust. The curved, decorated edges appear to draw from the naturalistic Art Nouveau period 1890-1920. The dovetailing is even, indicating it is machine made.

The carved paw like feet give the heavier feel present in some furniture 1900-1910.

These signs point to a dating of a 1900-1920 table.

It would have an estimated retail value of $1000-1200 assuming good condition and depending on sale geographic location.

Online auctions like eBay generally bring wholesale selling prices.

If you would like to sell close to estimated retail, some ideas are:

The internet has your largest audience of buyers. Place small ads on these sites or set up your own small store on these sites.

Be sure to specify local pick up only for large items. That way the buyer would be responsible for obtaining his own insurance and transport.

These sites carry antique as well as vintage items.
Accept PayPal only. - small fees - 20 cents to list plus 3.5% final price.

These sites are excellent and more upscale but fees are higher. I only recommend them if you have several items to sell.

Or your nearest where you can list items for free. Accept cash only.

In general, a private seller to a dealer, via consignment or at auction can expect 30-50% of estimated retail value.

Insurance replacement values are usually about 20% more than retail values.

I hope I have helped you.

If I can help you with further questions about this answer, please let me know before you rate me.

All my answers are quoted in USA dollars.

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Kind regards.


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Customer: replied 10 months ago.
Was curious that the top appears to be one or two pieces max, and that the patterned top is carved. Would that period have had carved patterned top vs. applied moldings?
Expert:  Doris replied 10 months ago.

Applied moldings on simple tables like this, would be cheap reproductions later in the 20thC.

The carved edges on yours are too even to be done by hand. They are machine done.

I recommend the book The Encyclopedia of Furniture by Aronson.

Kind regards,