Designed to be enjoyed in smaller intimate spaces, the parlor guitar was named after the room in large Victorian-era homes dedicated to the entertainment of guests. The thinner body and shorter scale length provide numerous advantages: Comfort, easier playability, as well as portability… which is probably why this style later became iconic as a musical friend to hitchhikers and freight train-hoppers.

As compared to more modern shapes, the parlor body is closer to that of the lutes, violins, and cellos that were the stock in trade of the European instrument builders who designed the first parlor guitars. The general progression of acoustic guitar body size has been from small to large. The parlor guitar was considered “normal-sized” for 70 years or so, only to be nudged aside by bigger body styles in the 1950s and 60s.

In a time where folks commonly socialized by playing music for one another, the Victorian-era parlor was furnished like an extravagant living room — its use, absolutely restricted to interaction with guests.

Parlor Video

The short scale of guitars like the AVN1BS makes it easy to play, and its more compact body produces a noticeably more focused tone. These characteristics lend themselves to complex fingerstyles and quick chord changes—capabilities that gave birth to a whole genre of turn-of-the century guitar music.

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  • The AVN3 has a solid Sitka Spruce top that provides fullness to its focused tone and a classical mosaic rosette.

    The AVN2 has a solid Mahogany top and solid Mahogany back and sides, giving it a warm mellow tone.

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  • The shorter scale-length of our parlor style models is easy on the fretting hand for chords and runs.

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  • Ivory knobs adorn the AVN2’s Grover® Chrome Open Gear tuners.

    AVN1’s chrome open gear tuners add a stroke of authenticity to the picture, along with “butterbean” style tuning knobs.

    The slotted headstock of the AVN3 reflects a steel-string style popular in the pre-WWII era.

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  • The AVN1 features a classic bone nut and saddle, long considered to provide pure balanced tone.