Antique Ice Cream Chairs



Antique or vintage ice cream chairs that are now available in the market, are by and large of the period from late 1800’s to early and middle of 1900’s. The use of ice cream chair became popular at the end of Victorian period from 1890’s onward. From that time, ice cream chairs have remained popular among chair users for over a century. In the 1930’s and 1940’s twisted wire ice cream parlor chairs or ice cream shop chairs were mass produced. Thousands of users used these chairs not only for their unique style and excellent design, but also because they were sturdy, durable and inexpensive. Besides, the seats are also very comfortable.


These chairs can be bought from a large number of places. You can buy it from an auction site, antique or vintage furniture seller, collectibles dealer, personal holding and garage sell. You can even buy them from those vintage ice cream shops or parlors that have closed down. Sometimes they can be purchased at unbelievably low prices from garage sales.

Among antique ice cream chairs, bentwood or wooden ice cream chairs are very popular and were much used in old days. Oak wood table and chair was  most popular. It is still available. Other than oak – mahogany, walnut, beech, birch, ash etc chairs are also available but in very small numbers. Chairs having walnut, mahogany stain over wood are available. Chairs made of metal are also found. Steel, iron, wrought iron, cast iron chairs and tables are also found in markets.  Among these, chairs made of steel, wrought iron, cast iron are used in greater numbers. Chairs with brass, nickel etc plated on metal are also found. Metal chairs in black, white, yellow and gold colors are commonly used.

Seats of chairs usually are of different types- metal chairs may have seats of wood or plywood. Vinyl, leather, cushion and various other materials are also used as seats apart from wood. Again, the legs of metal chairs have different designs-twisted, double twisted or plain.

Don’t expect these antique chairs to be perfect like the new ice cream parlor furniture. As they are old and used, various major and minor defects –such as paint loss, rust, breakage, scratch, nick, dent  or damage of some portions may be found. The seats of chairs may also get damaged in different ways. Some seats may be totally damaged, others may have their vinyl, leather or cushion material damaged or the cloth of cushion may be damaged or stained or shabby.

But the antique furniture shops, from where you will buy the antique or vintage ice cream chairs and tables, may rebuilt and repaint them as a result of which in many cases the furniture looks like new furniture. Some sellers will make seats or paint the furniture according to your choice.

You can buy repainted and rebuilt chairs and tables according to your taste and choice or buy the damaged chair as it is and use the chair in that condition without making any changes to create a vintage ambience.  You can yourself  repair the small defects, such as strip or wire brush and paint or spray paint a chair with rust and faded paint. Another option for you is to change old fabric of the seat with new fabric.

You may choose the paint of the chair and table and select the color, design of the fabric according to the color of other furniture, wall, floor and curtain of the room. If the table top has scratches, cracks or has got discolored somewhere, then you can lay a table cloth on the table top according to your choice and in tune with other furniture of the room, without repairing the table top. In this way by spending small amount of money you can make the antique or vintage ice cream chairs and tables attractive.