In England the period of Queen Anne style covers around twenty years of a style of decorative arts from approx. 1700 to 1720, spanning the reigns of three British monarchs, King William III, Queen Anne and George I, though reaching its apogee under the reign of Queen Anne (1702-14). Its furniture, and that of subsequent revivals, was distinguished by the use of walnut (especially in inlays, marquetry, veneers and lacquer works), the cabriole leg (the upper part in a convex curve and the lower concave) with claw or ball foot, the splat chair back (with a central vertical element) and an increase in small, highly decorated moveable drawing-room furniture as a result of a greater global connectedness and the fashion for tea drinking.
The Queen Anne period is synonymous with pretty furnishings, crewel works, pretty silk brocades and damasks, generally a fine, well proportioned, decorated and elegant style.
The cabriole leg is the legacy; along with walnut veneer and marquetry. In general pretty furnishings, and ‘dolls house’ architecture with crewel works, pretty silk brocades and damasks – generally fine and elegant.
These elegant homes have become the archetypal dolls house, and have remained among the most desirable – elegant, well propotioned, simple and of manageable scale- i.e not requiring a bevy of servants.
Indeed the architecture of this Queen Anne period is often called ‘dolls house’ referring to the domestically proportioned, highly attractive but very simply designed red brick homes. Typically with stone quoins emphasising the corners, a stone front door surround and built on three storeys. Distinctive rows of flush, small paned sash windows, in descending scale are usually painted white.
A Queen Anne revival period was enjoyed during the 1870s-1910s, facilitated by the industrial revolution and commissioned by the new merchant class.