Identifying Antique Furniture Foot Styles

Antique Furniture Foot Styles

Historical Furniture / January 22, 2019

  • Illustration: : Hofmobileliendepot Imperial Furniture Collection, Vienna, Austria
Marlborough foot
See above


Onion foot

An onion-shaped turned foot of the Early Renaissance not very much used after the William and Mary Period.

Pad foot

Alternate names: Dutch foot, club foot

A flattened disk-like foot often found under a cabriole leg. It is similar to a club foot.

Sometimes a club foot resting on a disk is termed pad foot.

Favored on Queen Anne cabriole legs

Paw foot

A foot carved to resemble an animal's paw, most frequently that of a lion. Above it there is generally carved leafage.

"Greek tripod tables (usually used for serving wine) had legs carved into animal leg and designs modified from ancient Egyptian prototypes with the introduction of duck heads and acanthus leaves." - Treena Crochet, Designer's Guide to Furniture Styles, " pub. 2204, p. 47

Reeded brass foot

Often on a caster

Scroll foot / Scrolled toe / Whorl foot
See below
See t above
Slipper foot

A club foot with a more pointed and protruding toe.

Popular in Queen Anne period.

Snake foot

Foot carved to look like snake's head.

Narrow elongated foot swelling slightly upward before pointed end.

Found in 18th century English and American furniture, e.g., Queen Anne, Chippendale and some Federal tripod-base tables

Spade foot

Tapered rectangular foot

Commonly found in Hepplewhite and Sheraton designs.

Spanish foot

Also called: Spanish scroll foot or Braganza toe

Scrolled foot with curving vertical ribs

A hoof-like, grooved and flared foot which ends in an inward curving scroll

Introduced from Portugal during the Restoration period and used in 18th-century English and American furniture, especially on turned legs in the William and Mary and the Queen Anne periods

Splay foot

Same as above.

Trifid (TRY fid) foot
Alternative name: drake foot

Derived from Irish furniture design.

Turnip foot

A ball foot with a small collar at the base

Whorl foot / scrolled toe / scroll foot

A reverse scroll foot

An up-curved, carved foot done in scroll motif, terminating a cabriole leg. A flattened scroll at the end of a cabriole leg originated in the Louis XIV (Baroque) period

Used on Louis XV (Rococo) substyle pieces.

Many of the drawings in Thomas Chippendale's Gentleman and Cabinet Maker's Director in 1754 feature whorl feet.