Stickley inspired book shelf

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Project by lateralus819 posted 01-10-2015 03:27 AM 1438 views 5 times favorited 10 comments Add to Favorites Watch

Hello once again. Here is a recently finished project I did for my wife for Christmas.

Took way too long to build. Ruined one side upon dry assembly. Then when wedging forgot the bottom shelf. I made a lot of mistakes along the way, but i learned from every one!

I was browsing BigReds FB and noticed a really neat bookshelf he had built and thought i would be something I would like to build. While it looked nothing like mine, what I did like was that the shelves were 45 degrees instead of 90. I thought it a really neat and different approach to a common application.

I found a plan that was based off a stickley. Tapered sides, a decorative half moon cut-out on the feet, and a handle at the top.

The top caps were tricky to make, as i the only router capable of handling the massive bit was my Bosch 1617. Being the piece is only 3” wide left me with less than an inch of usable surface to register from. Needless to say it took a long time to make. Probably an hour or so just to error on the side of caution!

I thought those added decorations weren’t my style so i put my own approach on it with Ogee details on the feet and a decorative top cap. Wedges complete the look.

BigRed and I have been talking a lot lately and he’s been a big help. He convinced me to try wedges for the first time. I’m glad he did! It adds a very nice visual contrast and definitely improves the structural integrity of the piece.

The main wood is Quartersawn African Mahogany with Wenge accents. I think these two work wonderfully together. Wenge is such a treat to work with and it finishes NICELY! The finish is a mixture of Natural danish oil and vintage maple trans-tint dye. Followed by beeswax as per usual. My wife loved it and I love looking at it and knowing it’s in MY house! Finally a project i get to keep!!

10 comments so far

View kdc68's profile


2526 posts in 1700 days

#1 posted 01-10-2015 04:32 AM

Beautiful figure in that mahogany !......The wenge makes a great contrast as well !....Awesome work…well done !

-- Measure "at least" twice and cut once

View Tom Godfrey's profile

Tom Godfrey

488 posts in 1599 days

#2 posted 01-10-2015 10:04 AM

Awesome. Something good takes a while to make so it paid off for you on this project.
Thanks for sharing

-- Tom Godfrey Landrum South Carolina (

View Don W's profile

Don W

17882 posts in 1991 days

#3 posted 01-10-2015 01:20 PM

you’ve got some talent Kevin. That’s a fine looking piece.

And kudos to Red for being the inspiration he is!

-- Master hand plane hoarder. -

View Woodbridge's profile


3451 posts in 1842 days

#4 posted 01-10-2015 01:59 PM

beautiful bookshelf, it looks great. I like the contrasting wood colours.

-- Peter, Woodbridge, Ontario

View _Daniel_'s profile


38 posts in 852 days

#5 posted 01-10-2015 03:24 PM

Nice job! Love the wedged tenons

View terryR's profile


6232 posts in 1732 days

#6 posted 01-10-2015 04:15 PM

Great build, Lat!
Very nice wood choice, and joinery!
Love the style, too, might have to copy?
The ogee is a classy touch, and nicely done!

-- tr ...see one, do one, teach one...

View lateralus819's profile


2236 posts in 1313 days

#7 posted 01-10-2015 05:01 PM

Copy away Terry! It’s a fun and easy build. The most challenging was a way to accurately do the mortises as i don’t have a mortiser. I rigged up a jig where i 45’d my piece to my bench and blocked it on the sides. Then used a flush routing guide to guide the router. took lots of layout!

View terryR's profile


6232 posts in 1732 days

#8 posted 01-10-2015 05:04 PM

^Thanks for the jig!
I’ll have to adapt it to fit my routah plane.

-- tr ...see one, do one, teach one...

View lateralus819's profile


2236 posts in 1313 days

#9 posted 01-10-2015 05:11 PM

I screw one block down then hold the work piece tightly to it while i screw the other side. It allows for a tight enough fit where clamps aren’t needed.

View Slyy's profile


2406 posts in 1079 days

#10 posted 01-11-2015 03:23 AM

Lat, that turned out fantastic, certainly deserving of a top 3! My wife told me I definitely need to copy your design for her sometime in the future, hope ya don’t mind!

-- Jake -- "Not only do we live among the stars, the stars live within us." - Neil Degrasse Tyson

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