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American Folk Art Canes Soar In Value
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American Folk Art Canes Soar In Value

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Artisans of the Valley …

Artisans of the Valley
Feature Article - Description of American Folk Art Canes, Walking Sticks, & Staffs from a collectors value perspective.


www.artiansofthevalley.com
woodworkers@artisansofthevalley.com
609-637-0450

Artisans of the Valley, based in Pennington, NJ, is an exclusive custom furniture, cabinetry, carving, and restoration shop. These craftsmen are the last of the traditional apprenticeship method of passing on the skills of furniture design, joynery, carving, and finishing. We offer our custom furniture by commission, and we hand sign and date each piece upon completion.

For over 35 years Master Craftsman Stanley D. Saperstein has perfected his skills and in the process passed these skills to his son Eric. Eric has now taken the reins of the business, studio, and the title of Master Craftsman.

Artisans offers heirloom quality hand rubbed shellac and tung oil finishes as well as hand painted options on any of our pieces. In addition, modern finishes are available through our affiliates including the full spectrum of lacquers, acrylics, and urethanes.

Artisans of the Valley is the last of the true conservation studios in New Jersey, providing museum quality restorations, refinishing, repair, and preservation services. Artisans will evaluate your antiques and collectables to determine the best options for your cherished possessions. Artisans is one of the few remaining restoration studios that can handle restoring a true shellac finish and provide the skills necessary to replace or restore damaged ball and claw feet, detailed carvings, and veneer.

Bent on educating our clients, Artisans offers a tactical theory on restoration entitled “The Philosophy of Restoration.” This article outlines the concepts associated with restoration, and helps dispense the myth surrounding antiques and their care. Artisans restoration services are not limited to furniture; we handles military artifacts such as firearms, swords, and leather goods. We are the only conservation studio restoring antique and collectable chess sets; bragging rights include several the famous Jaques of London first 300 Staunton series sets.

Artisans provides services for commissions, restoration, carving, and design to residential & commercial clients, design firms, and architects. Please contact us to discuss the specifics of your project.

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  • 1. American Folk Art Canes Soar in Value By Stanley D. Saperstein Forbes Magazine has recently reported a great art investment, American Folk Art Canes. These pieces of Americana have soared in value in the past few years. American Folk Art Canes were made mostly between 1800 and 1930, dwindling quickly as canes went out of style. Folk art canes can be very crude to professionally made. They can be tree branches, root ball saplings, or a worked piece of lumber. The thing that distinguishes folk art canes is that they were all different, each one unique and personal, mostly made by the cane user. Those made for others were made by amateur carvers for friends and a limited few by professional carvers. The professionally made canes are rare and very valuable pieces of beautiful art. As to value, most canes made in the 1930's are worth a thousand dollars and up, especially tramp art canes. Canes from 1900-1920 are $1500-2000. Canes depicting fraternal organizations such as the Masons Odd Fellows, G.A.R are around $2000-2500. Canes from the latter half of the 19th Photo by Frank Jacobs century are usually $1500-2000, with some professionally Original Publication The Times made canes like the Orion’s being $3000. Civil War era canes “Carving a Niche” by Janet Purcell are now over $5000, one such cane recently selling for $7500 at Sotheby's Auction. Contemporary cane making is not very common, although there are a few modern cane makers left who make canes for sale. Each has his or her own unique style, and canes made as little as 10 to 15 years ago have tripled in value. Most of the best folk are cane makers can be found in the Southeast, look for canes by Tom Wolf, Elisha Baker, Tim Lewis, and Danzil Goodpaster. In the Northeast, the premiere cane maker is Stanley Saperstein, a professional woodcarver and 18th century furniture maker. Mr. Saperstein started making canes about fifteen years ago, in doing so, he brought his highly trained carving skills to cane making. He produces several styles for different uses. They are broken down into Trail staffs, walking sticks, and canes. Trail staffs are made for rough terrain like the Appalachian Trail and are five feet in height or taller. Walking sticks are 40-48 inches, depending on the user's Photo by Tom Clark, Jr. height, and are used for regular walking. Canes are 36 inches, and are available with or without a handle. Artisans of the Valley, LLC 103 Corrine Drive Pennington, NJ 08534 (609) 637-0450 (609) 637-0452 fax www.artisansofthevalley.com Licensed and Insured NJ #0110807
  • 2. American Folk Art Canes Soar in Value By Stanley D. Saperstein Mr. Saperstein's trademark canes are carved with animal or human heads. Some historical figures like Washington or Lincoln; others are fantasy figures like wood spirits, leaf gnomes, and dragons. His root ball and branch canes with wood spirit faces are uniquely outstanding. Another distinguishing characteristic of his trail staffs, made from milled lumber, is their adornment with highly detailed head carvings that represent the outdoors. Trail staff carvings include Indians, mountain men, eagles, bears, wolves, goats, horses, and other wildlife. His portfolio is every increasing, and includes a variety of fraternal and religious staffs. This recent Masonic staff is a reproduction of a traditional teaching staff. These staffs are used as a training aid and a guideline for traveling men. Artisans of the Valley, LLC 103 Corrine Drive Pennington, NJ 08534 (609) 637-0450 (609) 637-0452 fax www.artisansofthevalley.com Licensed and Insured NJ #0110807
  • 3. American Folk Art Canes Soar in Value By Stanley D. Saperstein Photo by Tom Clark, Jr. Artisans of the Valley, LLC 103 Corrine Drive Pennington, NJ 08534 (609) 637-0450 (609) 637-0452 fax www.artisansofthevalley.com Licensed and Insured NJ #0110807

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