Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Swing-arm lamps

A popular art deco / mid century lamp, these Nessen swing-arms seem to have held up pretty well over time.  The brass looks a bit tarnished but these generally polish up quickly and beautifully with a little Brasso and steel wool.  The shades seem fairly clean and the owner describes them as "excellent".  The only downside is that the lamps seem to be missing the perforated circular metal piece that generally went above the light bulbs, attached by the finial, although I am not sure if that feature was actually included in all productions of the lamp.  One of these is currently for sale on eBay, with bidding starting at $80 and an estimated sale price of $150-200. 

This is also a piece of design history: Walter von Nessen invented the swing-arm feature for lamps in 1927 and this desk lamp was his first design to incorporate that feature. It is still made today by Nessen Lighting, and new ones sell for over $400 a piece.

Bottom line - $75 is a good buy for these classic lamps, and with a little clean-up they will easily be worth more! (It is worth asking the seller, or checking if there is a Nessen label anywhere on the piece)

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