Collectors Find Affordable Arts & Crafts in Chicago

Don Treadway and John Toomey provided Arts & Crafts collectors precisely what they wanted in their December 5th auction: a wide assortment of furniture, art pottery and metalware, including many lesser known and unknown makers, with realistic pre-sale estimates. The result was a solid sale and a solid showing for the Arts & Crafts market at the introductory and mid-level collecting levels.

The auction struck a good chord with the opening sale of an L. & J.G. Stickley tall case clock that sold for $42,000 (all prices include the 20% buyer’s premium). A few lots later an unusual Charles Rohlfs oak and copper log holder raced to $15,600. In between, however, several pieces of Stickley and Limbert furniture sold in the more affordable $500-$1500 range.

Limbert collectors stepped forward when a rare Pagoda Table, model 164 (pictured) with a pre-sale estimate of $12,000-$15,000 went home for $19,200.

The sale offered a large number of Rookwood pieces, which experienced more uneven results than did the Teco pottery. Teco vase, shape #287-A designed by W. B. Mundie, a 13″ double gourd form with four handles covered in a green matte glaze and with charcoal highlights (pictured), sold for $14,400. Other Teco pieces sold within or above their pre-sale estimates. A 1905 Newcomb College vase standing 14″ high was expected to sell in the $45,000-$55,000 range, but failed to meet its reserve.

Early Gustav Stickley furniture stood out among a wide offering. Two early chests of drawers, each with their original finish and excellent condition reports, sold for $8400 and $10,800. Although there was not a great deal of Roycroft in this sale, two pieces did not slip by unnoticed. A pair of wrought iron andirons from their early blacksmith shop sold for $8400, while magazine stand #079 (estimate $3500-$4500) sold for $7200.

A pair of hammered copper “Princess” candlesticks that every Roycroft collector would recognize were in this sale, but not with the familiar Roycroft mark. This pair was made by Karl Kipp, the famous Roycroft Copper Shop foreman, during a brief span of time (1912-1915) when he had struck out on his own. Normally these candlesticks would sell for around $750, but with Karl Kipp’s more rare mark they left the room for $1320.

For a complete list of auction results, go to