Thomas Chippendale, Cabinet Maker
Extraordinaire

Thomas Chippendale is well known world wide for his design of the infamous chair with the distinctive pierced back splat. Actually his profession was that of cabinet maker and an exceptional one he was with numerous examples of his work that exist still today in the castles and museums of England and elsewhere. Thomas Chippendale was the first cabinet maker to publish a book on the craft of cabinet making, The Gentleman and Cabinet-Makers Director. It is likely that early American Craftsmen and upholsterers such as John Webster had Chippendale's book open at the bench much of the time that he was at work. In addition to the above, Chippendale was an interior designer of some serious renown choosing paint colors, furnishings and fabrics for the well to do and the aristocracy of London. Of his many crafts, Chippendale was known to hand paint window shades. The Window shades of the 17th and 18th centuries were often painted with forest scenes or geometric designs along the edges and bottom hem.
These designs or scenes would become more apparent as the sun shone on the shade from the back side. This custom is virtually forgotten today however in the day of Chippendale the practice was common place.

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