Relevant categories: Tables
(Above photo - Chippendale wine table )
Traditionally, dinner was followed by a session in which the host entertained guests over a glass of wine. However, the drinking session would not just take place anywhere. Every home had a special piece of furniture known as the wine table. It was first invented towards the end of the 15th century with the main purpose being the facilitation of after-dinner drinking. Because of the purpose it served, the wine table was aptly christened the gentleman’s social table.
The wine table was created to be a narrow horseshoe or semicircular piece of furniture. Guests would sit around the table and enjoy a glass of wine after dinner. The earliest form of the table had simple metal wells sunk on the top surface. The wells would be used to hold ice or wine bottles. When not in use, they would be closed using brass lids.
Later on, the wine table had a revolving wine carriage, tray, and bottle holder. Others had a tray with a balanced arm so that bottles could easily be passed to the guests without shaking. Opposite each guest was a network bag, whose purpose is thought to have been to hold biscuits. Even so, some observers say that the purpose of the bag was to hold bottles and glasses so that they couldn’t fall onto the floor.
(Above photo - Pair Regency Wine Tables Mahogany Side)
In cold weather, the table could be set next to the fire. To ensure little or no inconvenience from heat, the wine table had a brass frame on which curtains could hang. When the curtains were drawn, the people around the wine table would be shielded from the heat. However, some wine tables had a socket right in the center of the circular top. To make the wine bottle accessible to everyone, it would be placed in that center socket.
(Above photo - Georgian Wine Table Walnut Side Tables Circa 1800 )
Wine tables didn’t exist in a vacuum. As such, they featured the major characteristics of the pieces of furniture in the period in which they were made. In the 18th century, wine tables featured brass or wood inlays, just like the other pieces of furniture. During the Regency period, for example, wine tables were mostly made from rosewood. Some had round-shaped tops while others had rectangular tops. The feet were reduced to a single platform sitting on a tri-form.
Several designers preferred using mahogany to make wine tables. In that case, the table would have an inlaid top supported by a central column with a tripod at the bottom. The table didn’t have extra features for holding wine bottles but still served the intended purpose.
What Would You Use Wine Tables For?
(Above photo - Regency Wine Table Antique Mahogany Side Table )
Why would you buy a wine table today? The answer is simple – you can use the table to serve wine when guests show up. Alternatively, you may use it to hold a lamp on the side of your bed. In the living room, the wine table is a great platform for books, artwork, and flower vases. Whether round-shaped or square, it can make a huge difference when it comes to improving your home décor.
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