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This profile was last updated on 1/31/14  and contains information from public web pages.

Owner

Email: d***@***.com
Local Address: Delafield, Wisconsin, United States
Company Description: Antiquity Period Designs, Ltd. was established in 1985 and specializes in 18th century American products. Dennis Bork is the national award-winning furniture maker...   more
Background

Employment History

Board Memberships and Affiliations

Education

  • degree , physics
40 Total References
Web References
Furniture by Dennis ...
www.antiquityperioddesigns.com, 31 Jan 2014 [cached]
Furniture by Dennis Bork
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About Dennis Bork
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About Dennis Bork
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Dennis Bork, Delafield, WI, 262-646-4911 has been chosen for the "Early American Life" magazine's "Traditional Directory of Craftsman", a juried directory, for 20 consecutive years (new logo coming): 1994-2013. His work has consistently been rated as "museum quality" in the Directory.
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Dennis specializes in late 17th, 18th and early 19th century furniture using traditional methods. Traditional tools are used whether they are old or reproductions made by Dennis. More emphasis is placed on using hand tools rather than power tools. Some pieces are made entirely using only hand tools. Dennis's finished pieces are incredibly detailed with complex turnings, delicate latticework, beautiful rosettes and all hand applied finishes.
Dennis designs, constructs and finishes all of his furniture for homes, offices and museums. He will make furniture to fit your needs.
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Dennis Bork
Antiquity Period Designs, Ltd.
SAPFM Member Business Directory
www.sapfm.org, 22 Mar 2012 [cached]
Dennis Bork, Owner
(10/28/2001)
www.pioneerplanet.com, 28 Oct 2001 [cached]
The only resource Dennis Bork needs to get the job done is his hands.
Bork is a master furniture maker -- and creates beds , tables and bureaus without the use of whirring machines.He doesn't need to cut corners to put them together.He demonstrated his craftsmanship last weekend at the Lang Folk Art Show.
Bork was one of almost 70 exhibitors -- all artists in some form or another -- who participated in the show.The Folk Art Show is held every year , hosted by the Lang Cos. , to celebrate American Folk Art and craftsmanship..Bork worked on a table , dressed in 18th century clothing among other furniture makers , basket weavers and quilters.
I have a bachelor's degree in physics and worked in the field for a few years and got a job as an apprentice as a wood pattern maker , Bork said.I did that for 12 years and as I did , I started making furniture.It was a hobby that grew into a business..
In 1985 , Bork and his wife , CeCe , founded Antiquity Period Designs , a company specializing in 18th and early 19th century hand-crafted furniture.Eight years ago he opened a shop in downtown Delafield , and is no stranger to the Lang Folk Art Show.He participated in it a few years before bowing out.This year he returned and demonstrating his woodworking skills for the first time at the show.
I do everything by hand , Bork said.I do the design , pick out the wood and carve everything by hand.I even stain the wood myself , I don't have a spray gun for that..
The masterpieces Bork created range from simple Shaker tables to Philadelphia card tables to highboys.His expertise has landed him national recognition in Early American Life magazine eight consecutive years , where he was chosen to be in the juried Craftsman Directory -- an honor given to the top 200 craftspeople in the country.
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Bork said he enjoys the Lang Folk Art Show and seeing the other handmade works that the dozens of artists display.
There's lots of handmade items and if people want traditional art , this is the place to come , Bork said.There isn't anything here that's mass-produced.It's all unique.And people also have a chance to meet the artists..
Forum Archive
www.sapfm.org, 16 April 2004 [cached]
Dennis Bork Banquet coordinator
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Or click on "Membership" at the top of this page for a form or [url]http://www.sapfm.org/sapfmmay2003/membership/[/url] Dennis Bork
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See you there, Dennis Bork
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See you there, Dennis Bork
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Dennis Bork, Banquet coordinator
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Thanks for your patience, Dennis Bork
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Dennis Bork Antiquity 08/25/05 8:23:49 AM
8" Jointer Alan, I don't know what you want to spend for a jointer but grizzly has their 8" on sale - [url]www.grizzly.com[/url] Dennis Bork
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Dennis Bork Hello Antiquity John McAlister has posted to the SAPFM board that you requested notification on. Regarding the subject - Cockbeading on the case.
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Dennis Bork Antiquity 06/11/05 10:23:57 AM
Antique glass Also try, www.artisanglassworks.com Dennis Bork
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Dennis Bork Antiquity Period Designs, Ltd. member #12
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Dennis Bork, member #12 Antiquity Period Designs, Ltd.
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Dennis Bork member #12
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You can register at [url]http://www.sapfm.org/sapfmmay2003/conferences/confreg05.asp[/url] Dennis Bork
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Dennis Bork [url]info@antiquity-furniture.com[/url]
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To sign up click on: [url]http://www.sapfm.org/sapfmmay2003/conferences/confreg05.asp[/url] See you there, Dennis Bork
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See you at CW, Dennis Bork
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Vance Publishing's CWB magazine - February 2005 Feature
www.iswonline.com, 1 Feb 2005 [cached]
Dennis Bork Trademark
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But Dennis Bork takes a different direction in his award-winning work, one that takes him as far as 280 years into the past.
Bork and his wife, CeCe, own Antiquity Period Designs Ltd. in Delafield, WI.They opened the shop in the picturesque town 25 miles west of Milwaukee, and it has proven a perfect spot for showcasing Bork,s custom-made period pieces and accessories.Delafield is well known as an antique haven, and Bork,s shop is a popular stop for those interested in furniture from a bygone era.
The shop has the distinction of being an authorized Colonial Williamsburg, VA, dealership.Bork has been named one of the ,Top 200 Craftsmen in the Country, by Early American Homes magazine for 11 consecutive years.He is a member of The Society of American Period Furniture Makers (SAPFM) and has been profiled by the group.
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Bork did this by first drilling 1,8-in. holes and then using a fret saw with a thin blade to cut out each hole by hand.
The shop features decorative accessories and a line of Windsor chairs.But the main focus is Bork,s own work, which includes dining tables and chairs, beds and desks.
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Asked to explain the allure of the period pieces, often described as fine furniture, Bork says traditional pieces get that designation because they never go out of style. ,There is something unique about the look.I really like the American interpretation of the styles,, he says. ,The English had their version and way of doing things.But when cabinetmakers came to America, they had a new kind of freedom to do the styles the way they wanted.That,s why when you see a piece from Newport, RI, you know it was influenced by cabinetmakers like the legendary Goddard-Townsends.,
Bork says the cabinetmakers from those two families created such unique styles as the block-front and block-and-shell styles. ,Sheraton pieces made in Baltimore would also be completely different,, he says. ,Craftsmen there produced some very ornately painted pieces and also did a lot of ornate veneer work.The early William and Mary look was a bit of a heavy look , not clunky, but heavier than the furniture that came after.They also did a lot of carving in that period.,
Bork keeps a variety of reference books to help show the differences of each period and area of origin.He also has two huge photo albums containing pictures of all his work. ,The photos are a great sales tool,, he says.
Hand-made touches
Bork,s pieces not only have the look of the period, but they also are authentic in other ways. ,I hand plane most of what I do,, he says, ,although I do have modern machinery in my shop.After I machine plane a board, I hand plane all the surfaces so it has both an old look and feel.I use hand-cut dovetails for construction and mortise-and-tenon joinery.I don,t use biscuits or dowels because they weren,t invented in the 18th Century.,
Carvings figure prominently in the styles and pieces made by Bork.He does his carving by hand versus having someone else do the carving and then gluing it on.
,I like to use wood moulding planes.I find many of the tools I use at antique stores or from flea markets,, he says. ,Many people doing reproduction work today prefer routers and shapers for cutting some of the work.But I like to use a wood moulding plane or carve it by hand if I don,t have the shape.I sometimes use an electric machine on a particular piece; it depends on the job and whether I have a cutter for it.,
Bork,s finishes also are hand-applied. ,I don,t use a spray gun,, he says. ,I typically brush on a couple of coats of shellac or pad it on, depending on the wood.I follow with wax or a wiping varnish for protection.,
Bork,s reproductions use solid woods, and he chooses species that follow the traditions of the era of the furniture.However, he sometimes will branch out, depending on the piece.
,Cherry, walnut, curly maple and mahogany are used most often.But once in a while I will use soft maple to make tops for dining tables or pine for a tavern table top,, he says. ,You won,t find oak in anything I do because it wasn,t used in the 18th Century for fine furniture.,
While Bork has an extensive collection of hand tools, he also outfits his shop with a variety of power tools.His 600-square-foot shop, at a location separate from the 3,500-square-foot store, is well equipped.His machinery includes a jointer, lathe, planer, drill press and bandsaw, all by Delta.He also has a table saw, a jointer and a planer, all from Grizzly.
His hand tools include a variety of wood moulding planes, some of them old, and bow saws, which he describes as an ,ancient tool that is good for roughing out dovetails and cutting squiggles and circles., Bork makes the bow saws and squares himself and has a variety of sizes, many with brass blades and wood handles.He estimates that he has some 80 different carving chisels in all different sizes. ,For the kind of work I do, the variety is important,, he says.
Self-taught beginnings and life-long learning
Bork,s father was a journeyman wood patternmaker, so he grew up around woodworking, making things in his father,s workshop.He got a degree in physics and worked in that field for three years.He says he loved the work, but took an apprenticeship as a wood patternmaker, just like his father.
,I was a patternmaker for 12 years,, he says. ,I always had a love for 18th Century furniture.
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Bork took his early training and work and combined it with frequent trips to museums to study period pieces.He has amassed an extensive library and says he believes in attending seminars and classes to continue his education.
,I would describe myself as largely self-taught,, he says. ,I attend yearly woodworking conferences that focus on period pieces, such as Colonial furniture.At one we learned about tall case clocks and at another we studied bureaus.,
Bork,s store first featured only his pieces.But he decided to add accessories and a few furniture pieces by others, in addition to a line of Windsor chairs, to give it a little broader scope.
Bork sees himself as a niche within the niche market of custom furniture.People who buy his pieces do so for many reasons, he says. ,Sometimes clients come to me because they need a piece to match what they already have or because they need a certain size or dimension, like a corner cupboard.
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,One of the ways I communicate the difference between how I make furniture and mass production is to let my clients see the work in progress via photos,, Bork says, adding that he frequently provides an information packet to customers along with the finished product. ,When people buy my type of furniture, they are buying an heirloom that will likely be in the family for generations.,
Bork is often surprised that his clients come from all walks of life. ,My furniture isn,t just going to the very wealthy.We used to assume our customers were just the well-to-do, but we have found that they are often people with an average income who might just buy one piece a year,, he says. ,I do think my clients are looking for something out of the ordinary, and they have a true appreciation for quality as well as for the materials used.,
Some clients come to his store to get ideas, while others bring photos.Bork says one man opened the book, ,Treasures of State,, which was put together by the U.S. State Department, and pointed to an elegant highboy and said, ,This is what I want you to make for me.,
,Some of my clients don,t begin as collectors,, Bork says, ,but they start getting a piece here and then another and another.,
Fine-tuning his estimates
One thing Bork says he has changed over the years is the way he estimates work and does his billing.
,I used to keep track of my hours for each piece.But it is difficult to get an exact reading because you might stop and work on something else or take a phone call,, he says. ,I have gotten very good at knowing how to accurately price my time and the materials involved., Most pieces take from 150 to 200 hours, but it is not unusual for him to spend up to four weeks on a piece, such as a triple-top card table he recently completed.A Philadelphia chest-on-chest takes about three months to complete, he says.
Bork says he likes to work closely with clients.The triple-top card table was for a client who first said he wanted a basic table suitable for card games. ,I worked up another option, and the client liked the idea of having a variety of tops in the design,, Bork says. ,The basic piece is made from mahogany.One top opens as a card table, and another top is designed for chess or checkers.The third is covered with the authentic felt baize top.,
Bork says that when the piece is closed, it is approximately 18 inches by 36 inches. ,The two rear l
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