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Bruno Hansen 225 chairs - wood identification  

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vector771
(@vector771)
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Posts: 3
03/09/2022 9:47 pm  

Hi all,

I'm new to the forums and am hoping that someone might be able to help.  I have a set of 6 dining chairs that I'm looking to sell but I'm very confused about the wood.  The original receipt states Rosewood, but one furniture re-seller has assured me that they're walnut with a 'rosewood finish'.  A couple of auctioneers have said they are rosewood (and mentioned the licence fee), and I've seen online listings mentioning teak!

There's another informative thread on here that confirmed walnut, but that finish did look quite different.  Can anyone shed any light?  Also, if you have any advice on the best way to go about finding them a new home (UK), please let me know!

Many thanks

 

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Herringbone
(@herringbone)
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05/09/2022 11:31 am  

@leif-ericson Do you have an idea? To me, it could be everything. 

"People buy a chair, and they don't really care who designed it." (Arne Jacobsen)


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leif ericson - Zephyr Renner
(@leif-ericson)
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05/09/2022 12:44 pm  

We need better photos. Get the camera as close to the wood as you can while still maintaining sharp focus and post those photos. 


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Andersen
(@andersen)
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05/09/2022 12:45 pm  

I'd say walnut


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Herringbone
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05/09/2022 2:24 pm  

The grain looks like walnut but it would be a fairly unusual choice for a Danish industrial furniture maker in the 60s. I'd only expect them to use teak, rosewood or oak. 

"People buy a chair, and they don't really care who designed it." (Arne Jacobsen)


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cdsilva
(@cdsilva)
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Posts: 1981
05/09/2022 7:38 pm  

Without any additional information, I'll take a careless guess and say faded East Indian rosewood, based on the combination of the receipt and the grain on the diagonal backrest slats of the right chair.


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Zephyr
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05/09/2022 8:08 pm  

It was probably my post, and I still have these chairs sitting at my dining room table.  I am very sure that these were primarily done in in European walnut (which is different than North American Black Walnut). 

It seems Bruno Hansen may have used a couple different toners to finish these (hence the different colors), but all the ones I have ever seen were walnut.  It was quite common to use different stains and toners to get different colors on the finished products.  This was especially the case with walnut, which can have an extremely wide range of coloring, which was often toned to look more homogeneous, color-wise.  Often the differing colors would be called by different wood names "Walnut", "Rosewood", "Teak", etc.  I have seen a number of pieces which were Beech, which said on the original receipt "Walnut", "Walnut colored", "Rosewood", but this was purely the coloring of the stain or toner, not reference to the actual wood being used.

The set I posted about and refinished had a darker finish, with a greenish hue, likely due to UV degradation of the finish.  Yours appear to be very similar, although much better cared for, and possibly already refinished at some point.  I can tell you for sure that yours are not rosewood, but rather the European Walnut, which most, if not all of these Kaernulf for Bruno Hansen end up being.  If you open the image in a separate tab and zoom in, it is quite clear to me that these are walnut.


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Zephyr
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05/09/2022 8:24 pm  

As you can see, mine have a lot more figuring and color variance, but to me this is more desirable than the more homogeneous, walnut-tone that they originally had.

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Zephyr
(@zephyr)
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05/09/2022 8:36 pm  

Here is another shot that shows how much the color can vary in walnut.  Note, European/English Walnut (Juglans Regia) tends to be much less dark than North American Black Walnut(Juglans Nigra), and has the distinctive black/dark streaking, which is much less common in Juglans Nigra.  This streaking is why European Walnut is often confused with Rosewood.

To Herringbone's comment, yes, walnut was not commonly used in Danish modern furniture.  I am not sure why this is the case, but is one of the reasons I still have these as part of my main dining set, they are seemingly pretty rare in this respect.

french walnut wood

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Raijin
(@raijin)
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05/09/2022 11:08 pm  

I recently got one of these chairs and wondered myself as so many online say teak or rosewood but looking at mine I was pretty sure it was walnut too. The top backrest was pretty scratched up so I redid it but left the rest alone. Since I was able to sand that part to bare wood I am pretty confident that it is indeed walnut although more figured than you would typically see here in the U.S. with walnut.

 

 

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Zephyr
(@zephyr)
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06/09/2022 1:36 am  

Two reasons why these are constantly misattributed as rosewood or teak:

1. Most people have no idea what woods they are dealing with, as they do not work with wood enough to know.  They have limited information, that they try to make fit what they are observing, and...

2. Most people selling furniture have a vested interest in the furniture being made from, now rare and restricted, rain forest lumber.  Despite being just as beautiful and expensive as these rainforest woods, Walnut is endemic to North America and Europe, so it is not as exotic and saleable as teak, rosewood, afromosia, mahogany, etc.


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Herringbone
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06/09/2022 2:45 pm  

@zephyr Thanks for your insights. I had no idea that Bruno Hansen used walnut on a regular basis. Maybe they used it as a cheaper alternative to rosewood? And good to have you back. Haven't seen you in a while. 🙂 

"People buy a chair, and they don't really care who designed it." (Arne Jacobsen)


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vector771
(@vector771)
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Posts: 3
06/09/2022 6:05 pm  

Hi all

 

Thanks to everyone for the hugely informative replies!! Sounds like they are definitely chestnut. I've attached a few close up photos as requested.

 

Apologies if this isn't the place for this, but does anyone have any suggestions on how to get these valued? Every enquiry I've sent has led to a reply asking how much I want for them and I really have no idea!

1662480371-20220906_134649.jpg

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vector771
(@vector771)
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Posts: 3
06/09/2022 6:06 pm  

And another picture

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Herringbone
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Joined: 2025 years ago
Posts: 1003
06/09/2022 6:19 pm  

@vector771 Sorry, we don’t discuss prices and value here for many good reasons. But maybe google helps. 

"People buy a chair, and they don't really care who designed it." (Arne Jacobsen)


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