Design Experimentation Part 1 - Mid Century Modern Inspired Valet

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Project by lumberjoe posted 06-27-2014 09:39 PM 2295 views 20 times favorited 23 comments Add to Favorites Watch

I’ve decided I really need to expand my design skills and explore styles I am not particularly fond of or comfortable with. Mid century modern came to mind. I did some research and found a designers pieces I really liked – Young and Norgate.

This is white ash and walnut, splined miter construction. I wanted to do something unique so I exposed the drawer slide. This made construction a challenge and I am still not perfectly happy with the drawer gap. The drawer itself is fir. Because of the high center of gravity I wanted to keep it light.

The top has some black leather and the drawer bottom is plywood I veneered with ash and made a pen tray.

The pull is supposed to resemble a cufflink and was shaped entirely by hand

Finish is my own custom oil/varnish blend. After it cured I waxed it with a spit polish technique to impart a very slight sheen.

Not bad for an experiment

-- Unplugged Woodworkers -

23 comments so far

View Woodbridge's profile


3261 posts in 1457 days

#1 posted 06-27-2014 09:49 PM

Your experiment turned out really well. That is a great looking valet. You certainly captured the MSM design.

-- Peter, Woodbridge, Ontario

View lumberjoe's profile


2883 posts in 1287 days

#2 posted 06-27-2014 09:50 PM

Thanks. I was debating on rounding the legs, but nothing else on the piece is round so I decided to keep them square.

-- Unplugged Woodworkers -

View siavosh's profile


673 posts in 910 days

#3 posted 06-27-2014 09:52 PM

Very cool! Been thinking I need some sort of valet, this is going to provide some inspiration.

-- -- Discover the most interesting woodworking blogs from around the world

View Brett's profile


919 posts in 1798 days

#4 posted 06-27-2014 10:28 PM

This definately has some serious “cool factor” going on! Well done.

-- Hand Crafted by Brett Peterson John 3:16

View bobasaurus's profile


1939 posts in 2223 days

#5 posted 06-27-2014 10:51 PM

That turned out great. Really unique miter edge to the drawer face with the integrated slide, nice work.

-- Allen, Colorado

View fatandy2003's profile


210 posts in 1283 days

#6 posted 06-27-2014 11:13 PM

Been looking for a valet I liked… Favorited.


-- -- Andy, “Those who expect to reap the blessings of liberty must undergo the fatigues of supporting it” - Thomas Paine

View Monte Pittman's profile

Monte Pittman

17942 posts in 1377 days

#7 posted 06-27-2014 11:41 PM

Love the design. Very nice.

-- Mother Nature created it, I just assemble it.

View Hawaiilad's profile


2560 posts in 2060 days

#8 posted 06-27-2014 11:52 PM

Very very nice design and build. Much better looking than the plain valets I have made

-- Larry in sunny and warm Hawaii,

View gfadvm's profile


13765 posts in 1729 days

#9 posted 06-27-2014 11:56 PM

Turned out really nice. I especially like the drawer slides and the mitered drawer front.

-- " I'll try to be nicer, if you'll try to be smarter" gfadvm

View Monte Pittman's profile

Monte Pittman

17942 posts in 1377 days

#10 posted 06-28-2014 12:04 AM

Oops wrong post

-- Mother Nature created it, I just assemble it.

View MarkTheFiddler's profile


2004 posts in 1227 days

#11 posted 06-28-2014 02:27 AM

Joe, I really like your experiment. You have fantastic vision and your woodworking skills are top notch. Beautiful job man.

-- Thanks for all the lessons!

View AnonymousRequest's profile


861 posts in 588 days

#12 posted 06-28-2014 02:47 AM

Really unique, I like the exposed drawer slides. Nice touch!

View UncleStumpy's profile


554 posts in 1352 days

#13 posted 06-28-2014 07:35 AM

Keep on exploring if this is the result!

About the idea of round legs… I am all for mixing things up, but in this case, round legs would not have worked at all. Great choice. A really eye catching piece!

-- "They don't want it perfect - they want it SPECIAL"

View majuvla's profile


5441 posts in 1906 days

#14 posted 06-28-2014 10:45 AM

Realy beutiful design! Colours of wood are great too.

-- Ivan, Croatia, Wooddicted

View stefang's profile


14706 posts in 2373 days

#15 posted 06-28-2014 03:11 PM

I like your design a lot. I hope you will continue exploring to our benefit.

-- Mike, an American living in Norway.

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