For any homeowner, the furniture design in their household is one of the necessary factors they give attention to actualizing the dream and vision of their dream home. Whether going for a vintage, modern, bohemian or medieval vibe, your furniture plays an important role in achieving this.
Collecting antique items is more than just style and vibe. To an artifact enthusiast collecting glass paperweights, coins, and antique sunglasses is a lifestyle. You’re interested in beautiful old pieces and want to know whether they are valuable. Isn’t that why you are here?
Want to add antique sheet music cabinets to your collection? We’ve got you. Here, you will learn about the history, types, how to spot, and value of antique sheet music cabinets. Did you come across this vintage work of art and it sparked an interest in you? Let’s get right into it!
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What Is An Antique Sheet Music Cabinet?
You have probably set your eyes on this vestige while watching your favorite period piece film or series. A sheet music cabinet was used to show off one’s music sheet album in times when entertainment at home was solely listening to music.
This cabinet has a hinged chest of drawers that open forward giving enough room to display your music sheets. These pieces come in different designs that make them not only stand out but also practical even now after the music sheets’ era.
The History Of Antique Sheet Music Cabinet
With the dawn of the technological era in the early 1900s, there was an increased pursuit of artistic interests and exploration of music as a form of pass time. Also, since music was the major form of home entertainment, the sheet music cabinet became a must-have in a well-equipped household to store their sheet music in.
These antique pieces were popular in the Edwardian and Victorian periods, although other designs were made in the 20th century to fit in with the era’s refined taste and newer preferences. The earlier designs were built using Walnut and Mahogany and on some rare occasions Rosewood.
Designs of Antique Sheet Music Cabinets
As mentioned, the vibe you want your house to give will determine the design of the antique sheet music cabinet you will purchase. Your search for the perfect piece that fits your style has you wondering what designs there are you can pick from, right?
Victorian Sheet Music Cabinets
These are cabinets manufactured from 1837 to 1901. Victorian sheet music features include detailed engravings and fine inlays, cross-banded edges, and boxwood and kingwood string inlays.
In addition, they mostly stood on four legs with spade feet. If you have come across a sheet music cabinet with an unusual bow-like shape on the front, this is from the Victorian era. Their design makes them a beautiful addition to your collection.
Edwardian Sheet Music Cabinets
These were manufactured from 1900 to 1910. Edwardian sheet music cabinets were designed based on functionality rather than aestheticism. Their design was simple and streamlined compared to their Victorian counterparts.
Common Characteristics of Antique Sheet Music Cabinets
Despite the antique sheet music cabinets coming in two main designs, manufacturers have let their creative juices flow and come up with different variations to these designs. Who said something can’t function and stand out at the same time?
These are some characteristics of antique sheet music cabinets:
- Drawers that fall out forward
- Expensive wood like mahogany
- Doors with mirrors for display
- Complex carving designs
- Smooth and glossy finishing
Front Door Sheet Music Cabinets
Just as the name suggests, these cabinets had doors on their fronts. You may love hosting people in your home, making your living room such a busy space, this type of sheet music cabinet would be great for you.
The inside of the cabinet has shelves and partitions to enable you to arrange your things neatly in the cabinet. Even though you left the inside a bit messy, no one would ever know since the door offers you privacy!
Front Drawer Sheet Music Cabinets
Some antique sheet music cabinets come with drawers at the front, running from top to bottom. The drawers come with hinges to enable you to pull forward your drawers and also for aesthetic purposes.
This type of sheet music cabinet is great for your living room and parlor.
Over the years different designs have been manufactured to fit the needs of different times and preferences.
Some cabinets have been manufactured with a combination of different designs, others have been made based on functionality while others are made from different materials and colors.
Manufacturers of Antique Sheet Music Cabinets
The Tindale Company, Herzog, and Larkin and Company were the popular manufacturers of sheet music cabinets back in the day. Most of the cabinets on auction websites are manufactured by these companies.
However, you may have a sheet music cabinet that is not from these manufacturers, do not be alarmed. There were brilliant individual manufacturers of these cabinets who had a good eye for detail and paid attention to quality whose pieces have stood the test of time.
Some antique sheet music cabinets have logos or markings that make it easy to date them and recognize their manufacturers. Those that don’t may be a product of individual talent and are a bit difficult to date.
How To Identify Antique Sheet Music Cabinets
Finding antique sheet music cabinets that are authentic can be difficult because they are rare. Being able to identify an antique from a modern artifact may be a challenge for an untrained eye. Here are some characteristics to look out for when trying to identify your antique sheet music cabinet.
Your neighbor has a yard sale and you come across a sheet music cabinet that she vows is an antique. The authenticity of this cabinet is highly questionable since original antique cabinets are very rare making it hard to get your hands on one.
Before buying an antique sheet music cabinet, do your research on sites or shops that sell these pieces. Read through the customer review and feedback to ensure that they are satisfied with the quality of the goods they bought.
Scouring the internet for shops near you and sites that sell authentic antique sheet music cabinets will be a good start to identify whether the cabinet you’re purchasing is an antique or a cheap knockoff.
Wood was the star of the show in the sheet music cabinet manufacturing industry. Rosewood, Walnut, and Mahogany were the type of wood readily available at the time and they were what was frequently used in the Victorian and Edwardian eras as raw material for sheet music cabinets.
Design of the cabinet
Antique sheet music cabinets are mostly of Victorian and Edwardian design. If your cabinet doesn’t have the characteristically detailed engravings in its inner space as in the Victorian design or a 40 by 24 inches size as in the Edwardian design, you are probably buying a newer more modern sheet music cabinet.
Another distinct feature to look out for in the design is the legs the cabinets stand on. If it has no legs, the chances of it not being an antique are very high and if it has 4 tapered legs the probability of it being an antique is very high.
Check the back or interior of the sheet music cabinet for any logos or trademark markings when buying an antique sheet music cabinet. Some cabinets, however, have no markings making it hard to date them.
Do not depend on only one of the tips above to identify whether a sheet music cabinet is an antique or not. You should use them all together to determine the authenticity of what you’re buying.
What’s An Antique Sheet Music Cabinet’s Value?
The whole point of collectibles at the end of the day is, are they valuable or not? Whether you’re buying or selling an antique sheet music cabinet, the value of your work of art is very important.
The value of your antique cabinet is dependent on several factors including:
You can’t lie that the backstory of something makes it a little more interesting compared to if it had none. The same applies to antique sheet music cabinets. Family heirlooms and cabinets that belonged to famous musicians are more expensive compared to those with unknown provenance.
An antique sheet music cabinet that has maintained a condition as close to possible as it was originally is more valuable compared to one in poor condition with significant wear and tear. Any issues that affect the functionality may reduce the value of the cabinet.
Old is indeed gold! Antique sheet music cabinets are more valuable with age because of the rarity of the older sheet music cabinets.
Design is another factor that determines the value of an antique sheet music cabinet. A cabinet made from rare wood like Rosewood, with intricate inlays and detailed engravings would cost more than one with a simple design made from everyday pine wood.
The price of antique sheet music cabinets ranges between $1,400 to $7,500 or higher considering they are mostly sold at auction and the price depends on how high you are willing to pay.
Where You Can Buy And Sell Antique Sheet Music Cabinets
After identifying and determining the value of your antique sheet music cabinet, you now have to find where you can buy it from. They may be rare artifacts, but there are trusted sites where you can buy them from:
- 1stDibs: this platform offers an online auction of antique sheet music cabinets. Buy and sell your antiques of choice here. It also offers item shipping. Check if they ship to your region before making a purchase.
- eBay: this site is the perfect place to find affordable antique pieces that fit into your collection. It is every collector’s dream!
- Live auctions: Keep your ears open in your collectors’ circle for any live auctions selling the antique pieces you are looking for. The chances of finding fakes in these spaces are very low because auctions are held by professional collectors with years of experience in the identification of antique items.
10 Most Valuable Antique Sheet Music Cabinets
#1 1910s Edwardian Antique Music Cabinet, Specimen Drawers
This Edwardian cabinet is in good condition, made from mahogany with boxwood front falling drawers. Get this rare piece for only $2,458.12 on 1stDibs.
#2 Herzog’s Antique Mahogany Sheet Music Cabinet
#3 1984’s Antique Victorian English Music Cabinet
#4 Darling American Victorian Mahogany Sheet Music Storage Cabinet With Mirror
#5 1870’s Antique Victorian Music Cabinet in Walnut
#6 1910’s Mahogany Inlaid Music Cabinet
#7 Edwardian Mahogany and Inlaid Bow Front Music Cabinet
#8 1900’s English Victorian Mahogany Inlaid Art Nouveau Music Cabinet
#9 Antique Victorian Mahogany Sheet Music Cabinet
#10 1890’s Antique Victorian Music Cabinet in Walnut
This amazing antique sheet cabinet costs $1,073.66 on 1stDibs
Where To Place Your Antique Sheet Music Cabinet In Your Home
You have bought your antique sheet music cabinet and now you’re wondering where to place it to incorporate it into your style. The cabinet’s main function is storage but it can act as a great aesthetic piece.
Here are places your antique sheet music cabinet can fit:
Smaller sheet music cabinets are a perfect fit in your foyer to store small items you may need to grab as you leave the house like keys or when you enter the house like mail. A cabinet is a great first impression to your guests of your style.
You can get an antique sheet music cabinet with the front falling drawers running from top to bottom or one with a front door since it offers the privacy of your stuff. Keep your files, papers, bills, documents, and books neatly in your cabinet to create order on your desk and avoid a mess.
An antique sheet music cabinet would make for a classy nightstand, don’t you think? To complete this safe space, pick a cabinet that doesn’t crowd your space and place your small items that are essential like your favorite book, pens, hair accessories, and jewelry.
See how fast you will find that occasional stray earring with this storage cabinet in your room.
You may be a bit skeptical about a sheet music cabinet in the bathroom because it is wooden but give it a chance. Place it in your bathroom vanity to store toilet paper, extra towels, and toiletries, and see how much depth it will give your space.
Despite it being a good candidate in your bathroom extra care must be taken, like wiping off the liquid on it and replacing the top with waterproof material, to promote your cabinet’s longevity.
There are a lot of places you can place your antique sheet music cabinet depending on how much space you have and your home’s style.
You are aware of the history of antique sheet music cabinets and the different designs that have been manufactured. Moreover, you know the features of antique cabinets, how to identify them and how you can incorporate them into your space.
It can prove challenging for even a professional collector to spot an antique from a fake. Do your research before rushing into the marketplace to purchase any item listed as an antique. Our advice to the newbies, find a mentor, or an experienced collector, to guide you and teach you the ways of antiquing.
Is there something you need to be clarified on antique sheet music cabinets? Any questions on today’s topic or general antiquing? Our comment section is open. We’d be more than happy to help!