Furniture Terms V- Z

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Valance - The matching fabric that is mounted across the top of drapes in order to present a finished look to the window treatment. Some valances are made of wood covered with cloth.

Vanity - A counter or cabinet designed to be lower in the middle than on the sides with a mirror on the back. Vanities usually have drawers to hold beauty products and they often come with a bench or stool.

Veneer - A thin layer of wood applied to enhance the appearance of furniture. Veneer is often used to create certain optical effects such as a sunburst.

Vis-a-vis Chair - A somewhat silly arrangement where two people end up sitting next to each other but facing the opposite way. Looked at from above, these chairs often have an S shape. This style is not very common today and would mostly be used as a conversation piece.

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Wash Stand - Similar to a commode. These small cabinets were designed to sit in a bedroom and be used for morning ablations. The top was usually cut out to hold a wash basin and there was often a matching pitcher. The shelves in the cabinet were usually large enough to hold a night pan.

Welsh Cabinet - A somewhat large base with storage drawers and a top with two or three shelves. The back of the hutch top was usually closed and the sides of the hutch were not much deeper than the shelves which were fairly shallow. Whatnot - A small open knick -knack stand open on all four sides.

Wheat Back Chair - A style of chair back with shocks of wheat carved in the back. The wheat sheaves were often fanned across the back.

Windsor Chair - A bowed style with turned spindles often arranged in a fanned style.

Wing Chair - Wing chairs were originally designed with much deeper wings coming forward from the chair back to help block drafts before double pained windows and insulation.


X-Stretcher - Crossed boards used as stretchers on tables and chairs.

Yorkshire Dresser - A low backed dresser which originated in Yorkshire, England.

Zig-zag Molding - A type of molding with a series of ninety degree back and forth bends.