shaker writing table

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Project by martin007 posted 04-21-2009 08:29 PM 3792 views 10 times favorited 14 comments Add to Favorites Watch

Hi all

I built this maple shaker influenced writing table for my young girl. She will start school next september but she already uses it for drawing. Hand made dovetails. I did a lot of hand work on this project like the dovetails, the tapered legs, top chanfer, top planing, smoothing and scraping, and used no sand paper. The front apron and drawer fronts come from the same curly maple board. The drawer fronts were cut out of the board and the other apron pieces where glued back together. I saw Norm Abram did this and it permits to have a continuity in the grain. You might notice the top offseted to the back, although it was not part of the initial design, when I first put the oversize table on the base, I liked the extra depth and since this table will eventually have a hutch I decided to leave it as is.

I Finished it with “tried and true” traditionnal oil and varnish and a final coat of wax.

PS When I presented the completed table to my daughter, she said: “Yuppy now we can paint it!”

-- Martin, Gatineau, Québec

14 comments so far

View BRod's profile


25 posts in 3322 days

#1 posted 04-21-2009 08:37 PM

awesome looking table! I love the curly front and the seamless drawers. Nice execution

View bensaw's profile


50 posts in 3459 days

#2 posted 04-21-2009 10:01 PM

Looks perfect. Gotta try me some of that finish.

View Chris's profile


339 posts in 3357 days

#3 posted 04-21-2009 10:27 PM

It’s a great looking table, reall like the timber and the lines. I’m a little uneasy with the asymetric side view, but that’s just me. Nice job!

-- Chris

View Woodwrecker's profile


4149 posts in 3575 days

#4 posted 04-21-2009 10:29 PM

That sure came out nice.
The figuring is awesome!

-- Eric, central Florida / Utor praemia operibus duris

View milehigh's profile


57 posts in 3339 days

#5 posted 04-21-2009 10:48 PM

Deja Vu. I cut my drawer fronts the same way too. Nice table!


View gerrym526's profile


274 posts in 3808 days

#6 posted 04-21-2009 11:01 PM

A beautiful piece in one of my favorite woods-figured maple.

Hats off to a woodworker who takes the time to learn how to work with hand tools and produces a piece of fine furniture. Dovetails, tapered legs, etc. look very well done.

Nice to hear you used scrapers instead of sandpaper to smooth the surfaces-it does make a difference.

I also have used Norm’s technique when building a desk front with drawers.

-- Gerry

View lew's profile


12061 posts in 3755 days

#7 posted 04-22-2009 01:29 AM

Beautiful Table!!

Shaker simplicity and beauty just can’t be beat.

-- Lew- Time traveler. Purveyor of the Universe's finest custom rolling pins.

View Junji's profile


698 posts in 3381 days

#8 posted 04-22-2009 01:31 AM

I can easily imagine how happy you are seeing your daughter using this desk. Yes, I gave one to my son a month ago too. He never says it to me, but at everywhere else, he keeps saying to anybody “my dad is great, he made my study desk!” So you daughter must proud of you, even if she doesn’t say so to you.
This is a great piece, really beautiful in every detail. The front apron and drawer fronts looks really cool, but must be really difficult to do that! Looking forward to your next project!

-- Junji Sugita from Japan,

View Beginningwoodworker's profile


13345 posts in 3672 days

#9 posted 04-22-2009 01:41 AM

Nice looking writing table.

View a1Jim's profile


117091 posts in 3576 days

#10 posted 04-22-2009 06:57 AM

Please don’t paint it Yuppy. Looks great very nice fiqure. Cutting aprons out of one peice has been around long before Norm did it. I Like norm and what he has done for woodworking. Well done Martin

-- wood crafting & woodworking classes

View martin007's profile


142 posts in 3775 days

#11 posted 04-22-2009 03:16 PM

thanks people!

-- Martin, Gatineau, Québec

View Bricofleur's profile


1442 posts in 3192 days

#12 posted 08-29-2009 07:06 PM

Beautifull table, and well done. Congrats! The details are perfect. Is it an optical illusion or one front to back leaf overhangs more than the other?



-- Learn from yesterday, work today and enjoy success tomorrow. --

View martin007's profile


142 posts in 3775 days

#13 posted 08-30-2009 01:59 AM

Salut Serge

The back does overhang more


-- Martin, Gatineau, Québec

View Belle City Woodworking's profile

Belle City Woodworking

355 posts in 4016 days

#14 posted 11-17-2009 09:57 PM


That is a beautiful table!


-- Formerly known as John's Woodshop - and NO not the one from Ohio!

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