Some of the most famous English furniture makers that we still celebrate today rose to prominence during the Georgian era: Thomas Chippendale, Thomas Sheraton, and George Hepplewhite.
George II was the British king between 1727 and 1760, and the George II style is perfect for a home that is decorated with a fairly formal traditional style, with furniture featuring strong carving with a regal and sometimes more masculine look. This furniture was elegantly carved, and claw and ball feet were popular on chair legs. Lion masks and foliage were other typical motifs. The chairs were also often decorated with beautiful high-relief carving and couch and settee frames would also boast handsome carvings.
During this period of architectural and furniture design, dark mahogany wood became the most fashionable option for furniture makers to use, replacing walnut wood. Mahogany is a strong tropical hardwood that can endure the heavy carving and piercing typical of furniture in this era.
King George III ruled for nearly 60 years from 1760 and the biggest change in direction under George III was the move towards Neoclassical design, inspired by the Pompeii and Herculaneum ruins discovered in 1748. This translated to furniture featuring classical pillars and columns.
Regency style furniture is named for the period in England in the early 1800s when George IV served as Prince Regent. The furniture developed Neoclassical Georgian furniture with themes drawn from ancient Greek and Roman and Egyptian architecture and design. In some ways it was a British interpretation of the French Empire style, featuring ornate gold ormolu mounts, and classical and military motifs.
Regency furniture has a stately and monumental feel with straight lines, crisp arches and geometric shapes. Brass accents include brass ring handles featuring lion heads to add to the sense of majesty. Decorative motifs included laurel wreathes, acanthus leaves, rosettes, masks, and mythological beasts including the Egyptian sphinx and griffins.