Pier table by Thomas Hope

Victoria & Albert Museum

As furniture makers we often look at iconic furniture pieces for inspiration and sometimes assistance with design issues prior to production.   This is a giltwood Pier table designed by Thomas Hope during the English Regency Revival period (circa 1800). Inspired by the Ancient Greek and Roman design, the table contains four carytids and above them are four medallions representing the gods of night and sleep.  The carytids, according to Hope, represent the four parts of the day.  The top is made out of a black marble slab.  Hope’s used symbolic ornaments in his pieces to influence designers, clients and other craftsmen.  Hope used giltwood in much of his furniture to contrast with the often colorful interior decoration of the time period.