Just another WordPress.com site

Posts tagged “handmade furniture Lambertville

Recent Work

DSC_0100This picture sums up where I am these days. Looking backward and forward, old and new. The Hadley trunk, based on examples from 1695-1725, I made of sassafras and finished with paint and shellac. It rests upon a minimalist and modern white oak breakfast table. The trunk is festooned with an ancient carving pattern complemented by an escutcheon cast from original 17th Century brasses. The corners are nailed like the original.

The table is restrained, it is all about the form., the only decorations are the figure of the boards with which it is made. The finish is “dry” with a low shine that suits it perfectly. It’s modern and clean but approachable and warm, usable.

IMG_0087I’ve been bouncing back and forth between styles for the last 13 years, making custom furniture here at Antick  in Lambertville, New Jersey. It’s never a straight line, but sometimes things relate to each other in style or species of wood. This year I’ve been making 17th Century case pieces or farm tables.  Here are some of them.

DSC_0081This cabinet is based on a piece at Winterthur in Delaware.  It is made of walnut with excellent hardware from Londonderry. I really like the turnings and, though it’s hard to see, the x-stretcher between them.

DSC_0077DSC_0071IMG_0247This is a farm table I designed in white oak with a plank top.

DSC_0003This valuables cabinet was particularly interesting. It is made of walnut with two figured tombstone paneled doors. Lots of great hardware and moldings.

DSC_0002Lastly we have another farm table. This one in walnut with a one and a half inch thick top. At nearly 7 feet by 4 feet it is truly a great table.

IMG_0006

Advertisements

Process

I start each piece by cutting parts out of boards, or some times one board. It’s a stressful time in the process of making furniture. I have a limited amount of material and have to make the best decisions regarding grain and figure. I’ll be working on these parts for a while and when it’s finished the parts will be that way forever.




DSC09381

 

Then there is a point where the parts start to take shape. The goal is to make each part like it was made of the same piece of wood. The grain should do the same thing in the same place on every leg, post or crest rail. It’s hard to do. You have to be sure the growth rings are facing the same way when cutting out the shapes. Things start to happen quickly at this stage.


DSCN0895

 

This is my favorite time at the shop. Joints have already been cut and can be assembled. The board starts to come back together again and look as if it is completely natural. I’m no longer making smaller boards, I’m making arms, legs, feet!


DSC06904
DSC09582

 

DSC09032


Happy Birthday to … my tool chest.

DSC09527

Happy Birthday tool chest happy birthday to you. I just realized it’s 14 years old! I made it at The North Bennet Street School in Boston as the first requirement of the Cabinet and Furniture Making program. It is the first case piece I ever made.

DSC09544

All North Bennet Street tool chests have some common features among them. They have a maximum size, maximum number of drawers (6) and a way to lock it up. It is remarkable how many combinations of drawers, doors, woods, locks, and hardware there are. Each one is as individual as its maker.

DSC09543

It holds my marking and measuring tools and card scrapers in the top row of drawers, next level is chisels/gouges and files/rasps followed by odd tools, thread cutters & etc. and draw knives, scorps, hammers, bit braces at the bottom. The frame that my chest is attached to (the feet that is) I made for its first birthday.

Carved beads my wife and son gave me.

Carved beads my wife and son gave me.

This is how it usually looks

This is how it usually looks

DSC09325

The bottom drawer of the tool chest was carefully designed to hold my hand planes, they now reside in a cabinet on the wall.


Goodbye 2013!

DSC09962

The year started off with the completion of this carved oak vanity. The hardest part might have been photographing it! It just doesn’t fit in a frame.

DSC09367

From oaken vanity Welsh Dresser, here in curly maple. Probably my favorite for the year.

DSC09470

An architectural model.

DSC09861

Two copies of an early Queen Anne chair, with rush seats.

DSC09253

And a compass seat frame. The chair was made by someone else.

DSC09354

DSC09726

The key to Stockton!

DSC09727

DSC09856

Take your kids to work day!

DSC09240

Interior shutters.

DSC09332

A child’s size rocker in walnut.

DSC09213

Two Hadley trunks made of sassafras.

DSC09754

A full size, Chippendale, four poster with tester.
DSC09154

Wainscoting in my house.

IMG_0951

My son found a child size windsor rocker, so we fixed it up, it fits him perfectly.

IMG_0287

A walnut vitrine that I never got to photograph properly.

IMG_0407

A set of Red cedar Campeche chairs.

IMG_0483

And finally a New York Chippendale serpentine gaming table! I hereby resolve to post more this year!


Ellie’s Trunk

DSC09966

This is a keepsake box for a new born named Ellie. It is a copy of a box made in the Connecticut River Valley in Massachusetts between 1695-1725. Wallace Nutting calls it a trunk in his book Furniture Treasury.
I painted it green to emphasize the symbolism of the the growing vine, and a new life.

DSC09205

The pattern of the carving is an expanded version of the pattern on Hadley chests. In fact, I used the same pattern that I used for Ellie’s parents wedding chest, and it fit the boxes measurements perfectly. I just “grew” the vine to fit the height of the box.

DSC09213

I made the box out of a wide board of sassafras that was re-sawn into half inch thick sides. Sassafras has a wonderful smell and carves well, the original was made from riven oak with a pine lid and bottom. Ellie’s box is joined by half blind and through dovetails. I made another box joined with nails and a rabbet like the original.

DSC09111

The carving on this box is more “developed” than most Hadley chests because it is carved partially in the round, it is still charmingly naive and child like. The ground of the carving has been dressed with punch-work.

DSC09225

Here is a bible box I made in comparison. Ellie’s trunk is 25 1/2″ long, 16 1/4″ wide, and 9 1/2″ high


Looking back at 2012

DSC09434

It’s been a long old year here at Antick. It all started with a new customer Mr. G—, an interesting fellow who likes to turn discarded lumber into unusual antiques. This is the first piece, a tall case clock made of old pine book shelves. He then paints or otherwise finishes them himself.

DSC09770

Reproducing a reproduction, again using reclaimed lumber, and a riff on the same form.DSC09635

I also made a new stick for a cane, it’s ebony carved to resemble blackthorn.

DSC09462

DSC09290

I’ve already posted about this double sided bookcase. Then I made tables in cherry and curly maple.

DSC09156DSC09578

Another reclaimed lumber chest and a thoroughly modern nixie tube clock out of a solid block of walnut.

DSC00029

DSC09796

A miniature blanket chest with drawer made of reclaimed pine.

DSC09358

Two compound angle dovetail projects in cherry.

DSC09216

DSC09228

DSC09521

A Queen Anne mirror in curly maple, and a Pennsylvania German bench.

DSC09773

This is an architectural model that is also a box, it’s a very cool design and was the first time I have cut a dovetail in plexiglass!

DSC09275

A ship model weathervane and solid wood skull made of bass wood.

DSC09430

DSC09712

More weathervanes, the top one is based on Albert Pinkham Ryder’s painting “the Racetrack”.

DSC09089

DSC09087

DSC09620

More architectural models.

DSC09627

This is a bathroom vanity made of white oak in an old english Elizabethan style. It is almost eleven feet long.

DSC09650

It will be stained quite dark. I love the rhythm of the scrolled cuts at the base and the many levels of mouldings and carving of the facade.

DSC09930

DSC09016

DSC09102

We are wishing for a happy, healthy and prosperous New Year for us all.


Double Sided Cabinet

This is a commissioned book case that I’ve just completed. It is made of cherry, with an oil, shellac and wax finish. It was designed to divid the space between a kitchen and great room and be accessible from both sides, one side is open and the other has doors. The case is quite large, 54″ long 36″ high and 22″ deep.

The case is a good height for a serving station during parties.The shelves accommodate most art books.

Hand cut half-blind dovetails join the sides of the case which sits on a frame supported by ogee bracket feet.