New andirons in turn-of-century styleBy

New andirons in turn-of-century style

These 20-inch new cast brass andirons copy the linear organic designs that bridge Art Nouveau and Arts and Crafts. Such designs were popular from the end of the 19th century through WW I, especially in Britain. This new set sold for $150 in a mail order catalog. Similar originals can easily sell for $1,000 and up; much more if the set can be linked to a well-known designer or traced to a house or office by a famous architect.

Many new andirons, including this new set, can often be recognized by their very short horizontal racks. The rack in this set, for example, is only 9 inches. Racks in most fully functional vintage andirons are 12 inches and more. From a practical viewpoint, the rack is the most important element of any andiron. It is the part that holds the firewood which is the whole point.

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Fig. 1

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Fig. 2 The rack (arrow) is the most important functional part of any andiron. It is the piece that holds the firewood. Many reproduction andirons have very short racks. The example shown here has only a 9-inch rack. Racks in vintage functional andirons are generally about 12 inches or more.