Blanket Chest

United Society of Believers in Christ’s Second Appearing (“Shakers”) American

On view at The Met Fifth Avenue in Gallery 734

This "heavenly blue" Shaker blanket chest has one deep drawer. The blanket chest was a familiar furniture form in colonial New England that the Shakers borrowed and adapted to their own taste. Close examination of the finish reveals a number of coats of paint, varying slightly in tint, providing rare evidence of original painted Shaker furniture. Very early Shaker furniture may have been given a heavy coat of paint to act as a wood preservative. Later furniture was embellished with thinned paint, in order for the natural grain of the wood to remain visible.

Blanket Chest, United Society of Believers in Christ’s Second Appearing (“Shakers”) (American, active ca. 1750–present), Pine, American, Shaker

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