|Project by HokieKen||posted 05-09-2016 12:51 PM||910 views||1 time favorited||15 comments|
Our first granddaughter was born last year and we needed a dresser for the nursery we made in our house. I decided that would be perfect for my first “fine” furniture piece. My hope is that it will be an heirloom piece that she will have and pass down long after I’m gone.
The design is my own. I suppose it’s primarily Shaker style, but I didn’t attempt to adhere to any one style but rather just “borrowed” ideas from all the many similar pieces I found on LJs as well as the rest of the internet. It is made entirely of white oak with the exception of the drawer pulls which are walnut. All of the wood was harvested and dried locally.
The side panels “float” in the frames and the top is loosely screwed into slotted blocks to allow for movement of the large glued-up pieces. The drawer fronts are dovetailed into the sides. They are half blinds and are the first time I’ve use my PC dovetail jig. It was a life-saver!
Drawer pulls were made by cutting a cove on 2 sides of a piece of walnut then drilling through to “wrap” the coves around with a forstner bit. The pulls were then cut apart and the tops shaped and the bases narrowed down using a couple of block planes. It took considerably longer than I expected to make the pulls but it was worth it. They fit the piece nicely and kept me from using any purchased parts on the dresser.
The joinery is primarily M&T with the face frame dadoed into the front legs. I used through-mortises at the top which were my first and I really like the extra character it gives the piece. The side panels are splayed out at about 2 degrees. This definitely caused some challenges with getting the joinery cut right but was well worth the added trouble.
The finish is a coat of BLO followed by a sealer coat of thinned down poly. I glazed over the poly with a red elm gel stain to highlight the grain. Then a few coats of thinned down poly to seal it all up. The final coat of poly was satin sheen to cut down on the gloss. This is the first time I’ve done this type of finish and I’m really happy with how it came out.
I learned MANY things in making this piece and I’m very glad I tackled it. It was a lengthy build and I still have to make a hutch to go on top but it was worth every minute! Thanks for looking and, as always, comments and critiques are welcome.
-- Kenny, SW VA, Go Hokies!!!