Illustrated FURNITURE Glossary

Marquetry
Pron: MAR ki tree

Marquetry: applying small flat pieces of wood of different colors to a surface to make figurative compositions.

Marquetry: Decorative technique in which elaborate patterns are formed by inserting shaped pieces of wood or other contrasting materials into a veneer applied to another surface

Marquetry: Pattern made by setting contrasting materials into a veneered surface. The resultant decoration is flush and level. Usually, the material set in is finely grained, interestingly colored woods, but tortoiseshell, horn, metal, and mother-of-pearl are also used.

In marquetry, often referred to as "painting with wood," furniture makers use pieces of veneer to create flowers, scrolls, bouquets, and even portraits and entire scenes,

Popular in the Renaissance period and also in 18th-century France and England.

Marquetry can be imitated with lithographed transfers.

Marquetry was developed by the Italians as early as the 14th century, but it became popular throughout Europe in the 17th century.

Seaweed marquetry: delicate interlacing designs in inlay suggesting marine plant life. Originating in Italy, the type was best developed in England, late in the 17th century (Baroque),

Veneer: thin sheet of decoratively grained wood glued to the surface of inferior or inexpensive wood, such as pine.

In parquetry, woodworkers also piece together veneer, but use them to create geometric patterns. Examples: parquet floors, a chess board with squares made from light woods and dark woods.

See also: inlay


Examples in Buffalo:

Other examples:


Photos and their arrangement © 2005 Chuck LaChiusa
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