Chicago Antiques Guide

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Oak Refectory Dining Room Set

Posted Saturday, January 14 by Brian

china cab.jpg I am trying to find out the age of this dining room suite, it's origin,and value. I was wondering if you could help me? The reason I am e-mailing you is because the furniture has a gold sticker with Gimble Brothers on it and somehow while trying to find something on the internet your name came across that you might know. I have attached some pictures and hopefully they will be helpful. If I am barking up the wrong tree for help, could you please direct me somewhere else?

Your set is called a Refectory set and includes the table with pull out leaves at the ends, 6 chairs, china cabinet, buffet and server. It is made of oak, and was probably made in the 1920's or 1930's. Because of the rather heavy styling, it is not everyone's taste. People either love it, or think it's neat, but wouldn't want to live with it. In the Chicago area, I've seen similar sets priced between $1500 and $2,400 in antique shops. They generally do not sell quickly in that range, but they do sell. I once sold a very similar set (without the server) at an estate sale for $600. The house was sold, the owners had moved out of state, and we only had 2 days to sell it. It was the only offer I had, even though I had started it
at $1095.

I also sold a set with just the table, 6 chairs and the buffet to a dealer for $600, and he priced it $2,000. I don't know what he got for it or how long it took.

If you want to get top dollar you would have to advertise it a lot and be very patient. You could also try a good antique auction house, who should be able to provide an auction estimate from your photos. This is probably your best chance of selling it quickly, with some up side potential. Ask the auctioneer if you can put a reserve on it after he gives you an estimate. If your reserve is below the low estimate, the auctioneer may let you put a reserve without charging you a fee if it doesn't sell. The only Pittsburgh area Auction House that I found with a web site was Dargate Auction Galleries. There may be others, check around.

A better antique dealer may be interested, but would pay about 1/2 of what they thought it would sell for, not necessarily what they would price it.

I think you may be able to get between $1,000 and $1,500 from a private party or $700-$700 from a dealer. I do see there is a piece of trim missing from the left side of the buffet. The doesn't help.

I'm sorry I couldn't be more definitive. I hope this helps.

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