Antique blanket chests are truly fascinating and intricate wooden boxes! Wouldn’t you say?
Now, let’s jump right into answering 8 popular questions surrounding the antique blanket chest!
8 Popular Questions Asked About Antique Blanket Chests
1. What is an antique blanket chest? Why does it exist?
An antique blanket chest was a simple wooden box built with a hinged lid for blankets, linens, and clothing around the 17th century. Its popularity went full strength before tapering off in the 19th century. However, nowadays, these beloved chests have earned themselves a much sought-after reputation for collectors.
Some collectors are willing to pay $10,000 or more for antique blanket chests dating back to the 17th or 18th century.
Check out some old blanket chests for sale here.
Why Does the Blanket Chest Exist?
Antique blanket chests sprung into existence as an affordable and effective way for storing important household items, blankets, and linens. Back in the 17th-century closets and chairs were less common or affordable and the antique blanket chest provided a sturdy storage and seating solution.
Thus, it continued to gain popularity and widespread use across Europe and eventually came aboard ships to America.
In fact, the blanket chests were the only furniture brought with the settlers when they sailed to America.
Learn more about the antique blanket chest, its history, and its evolution by reading, Blanket Chests.
2. How much does a new antique blanket chest cost?
While old antique blanket chests cost anywhere from $200 to $10,000+ depending upon their age, wood, and condition, new antique blanket chests cost around $700 – $1,100.
View some old antique blanket chest prices here.
The factors affecting the price of a new antique blanket chest include:
- Its size -Whether it is small, medium, or large
- Type of wood
- Special customizations – Such as old-world distressing, chest front engravings, dovetail joints, etc. can increase the price range of $700 – $1,100 another $30 – $140.
Check out some new antique blanket chests here.
3. What kind of wood is an antique blanket chest made of?
Back at the beginning of colonial America, antique blanket chests were crafted out of cheaper woods like pine.
Those wealthy enough would have their blanket chests crafted out of imported mahogany, cherry, or walnut. Some of the higher-quality blanket chests were also lined with cedar to repel insects.
Nowadays, carpenters of new antique blanket chests avoid inexpensive pines and opt for only high quality and durable woods such as the following:
- Cedar – Offers a wonderful scent which also repels insects, and is extremely durable
- Cherry – Stuns with its lovely rich reddish-brown color and its durability is long lasting
- Oak – Resists fungal growth and is exceedingly strong and durable
4. What size is an antique blanket chest?
Antique blanket chest sizes vary upon the manufacturer and whether it was custom made.
However, the following offers you the most common sizes of an antique blanket along with its dimensions.
- Small – 36L x 17W x 17H
- Medium – 42L x 18W x 19H
- Large – 46L x 20W x 20H
Generally, you will discover the most antique blanket chests within close range of the above dimensions.
5. How to date an antique blanket chest?
The best way to accurately date an antique blanket chest would be to have it appraised by a professional antique appraiser. However, there are some tips to follow for determining whether an antique blanket chest is valuable or not.
- Look for dovetail joints – Dove tails joints indicate that the chest was handcrafted rather than factory assembled. Antique blanket chests will have dove-tail joints.
- Stress cracks indicate antique value – As long as the cracks do not inhibit the blanket chest’s function (which decreases value), they provide evidence for age and possible value.
- Does it have its original finish? – Blanket chests that are painted over will lose value compared to those in its original form.
6. What do people put in antique blanket chests?
Originally, people put linens, blankets, and clothes inside antique blanket chests. Eventually, as the blanket chest evolved in its design adding a drawer at its base, slippers, or mules were stored inside the chest as well.
Fast forward a couple of centuries and the antique blanket chest is still being used for the same storage reasons.
Here is a list of what people put in an antique blanket chest.
- Jewelry boxes
7. How heavy is an antique blanket chest?
The weight of an antique chest varies depending upon the type of wood used in its design. For example, a large cherry antique blanket weighs about 75 pounds and a large cedar antique blanket chest weighs about 50 pounds.
If you would choose an antique blanket chest with oak wood, that would be the heaviest wood option and thus the heaviest chest out of all three wood options.
For exact weight on different woods and your desired size, contact us.
8. How to beautify an antique blanket chest?
There are multiple ways you can add a little spice and life to your antique blanket chest.
Of course, depending upon whether you have a genuinely old antique blanket chest, an inexpensive thrift-store find, or you are in the process of choosing a new one, will affect the possibilities of beautification.
Here are some suggestions for each possibility.
- Genuinely old antique blanket chests
- Leave it just as is! Do not touch it until you confirm its value.
- If the chest is already dated, you can find an experienced antique restoration company to carefully restore it for you to sell or to display in your home.
Check out this video of the professional restoration of an antique blanket chest.
- Inexpensive thrift-store finds
- Repainting or re-staining can really offer a blanket chest a facelift.
- Replacing old hardware can also brighten its overall appearance.
- If you are skilled with wood carving you could carve intricate or simple designs on the front.
- Add a custom engraved nameplate
- Replace or refurbish the legs if necessary
- In the process of choosing a new antique blanket chest
- Add chest front engravings – Incorporates carved phrases, verses, grapes, or flowers etc.
- Choose old world distressing – This adds an authentic colonial appearance
- Add dovetail joints – Offers a valuable addition and authenticity
- Add a custom engraved nameplate – Make the blanket chest memorable by adding a personalized name and date
View the special customization options for a brand-new antique blanket chest here.
We hope the above answers satisfy your questions about the lovely antique blanket chest.
If you have any other unanswered questions or wish for more details, please do not hesitate to reach out to us. We love antique blanket chests just as much as you do!
Best wishes on the discovery of the old or the ownership of the new! Either way, antique blanket chests are quite the find!