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Figured Walnut Bookcase

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Project by Konquest posted 1103 days ago 2706 views 14 times favorited 23 comments Add to Favorites Watch

I wanted to create bookcases (there is a twin to this one) for a commission that tied together traditional home office cabinetry with transitional decor in the rest of the house. To that end, I made a carcase out of walnut veneered ply, shelved dadoed into the sides, and edged with 1.5” wide solid edging with a cove profile. The frame and panel sides were applied over the carcase and routed flush to the face frame. The panels are my nicest figured walnut lumber, resawn and bookmatched. The top is 4/4 figured walnut glued up. I intentionally chose a piece to highlight the contrasting sapwood/heartwood, as opposed to trying to dye it.

The molding: I have been experimenting with making bandings lately using scraps of exotic woods from previous projects. I laminated a sandwich of alternating zebrawood, maple, walnut, koa, and bloodwood, then sliced it off in 1/8” end grain strips, which were then applied to an MDF substrate and edged in more walnut. I made a picture frame first using this technique as a way to practice for the bookcases.

The whole thing is finished with semi-gloss Arm-R-Seal. 5 coats on the top, 3 everywhere else.

Critique away!

-Brian

-- 9 3/4 fingers remaining.





23 comments so far

View markedwardsims's profile

markedwardsims

50 posts in 1194 days


#1 posted 1103 days ago

Wow, this is beautiful work! The laminated moulding is a great way to use those expensive “scraps”, and it looks killer. Very nice.

mark

View lanwater's profile

lanwater

3025 posts in 1435 days


#2 posted 1103 days ago

Very nice indeed!

-- Abbas, Castro Valley, CA

View HawkDriver's profile

HawkDriver

447 posts in 1134 days


#3 posted 1103 days ago

Beautiful! I love the trim. It adds a little pop to the beautiful Walnut! Nicely done!

-- Patrick, Helicopters don't fly. They beat the air into submission.

View saddletramp's profile

saddletramp

994 posts in 1139 days


#4 posted 1103 days ago

Love the bookcase style and the walnut. I like the trim stripe very much but I can’t say that I like it on that bookcase. It just seems out of place to me, but I’m a little weird so that’s just me. Very nice job and overall quite lovely.

-- ♫♪♪♫♫ Saddletramp, saddletramp, I'm as free as the breeze and I ride where I please, saddletramp ♪♪♪♫♪ ...... Bob W....NW Michigan (Traverse City area)

View Dusty56's profile

Dusty56

11605 posts in 2189 days


#5 posted 1103 days ago

Being a Walnut junkie , I’d love to see this in person : )
The stripe is interesting and very creative , but , from the photos , I can’t say that it helps the piece.
Another reason to see it in person : )
Keep up the good work !!

-- When you arrive at my front door, please knock softly but firmly. I like soft , firm, knockers : )

View Spoontaneous's profile

Spoontaneous

1251 posts in 1831 days


#6 posted 1103 days ago

I beg to differ. To my eye the ‘striping’ sets the piece off. In all but one of the photos, it looks to me like you made a perfect wood selection for that trim. If it was a bit bolder it would have killed the overall look. But, at least in the photos, you nailed it. The trim gives it just that little zing that makes it more interesting to the eye. Without the trim, it would have been a nice looking, finely crafted bookcase. With the trim, it is a stand out piece of furniture. JMHO

-- I just got done cutting three boards and all four of them were too short. (true story)

View rivergirl's profile

rivergirl

3198 posts in 1339 days


#7 posted 1103 days ago

Unbelievably beautiful! And I agree – the trim is incredible. Love this piece.

-- Homer : "Oh, and how is education supposed to make me feel smarter? Besides, every time I learn something new, it pushes some old stuff out of my brain."

View Ryan Bruzan's profile

Ryan Bruzan

148 posts in 1396 days


#8 posted 1103 days ago

I love it when I experiment with things trying to get a desired effect, but then ultimately coming to rest on a better result that would never have come to fruition without the experimentation process. Beautiful piece!

-- No matter how many factors go into thinking about a project, there is always one important new discovery to be made.

View CharlieM1958's profile

CharlieM1958

15544 posts in 2719 days


#9 posted 1103 days ago

That is some beautiful walnut. I love the overall design, and I vote with those who think the beautiful trim is a real asset to the piece.

My only critique, and this is just my preference: IMO, the grain on the back of a bookcase should always run in the same direction as the grain on the sides.

-- Charlie M. "Woodworking - patience = firewood"

View HerbC's profile

HerbC

1084 posts in 1360 days


#10 posted 1103 days ago

I like it!

Each to their own but I think the trim banding adds to the beauty of the piece. Excellent selection of material for the panels and the top as well.

Keep up the great work.

Be Careful!

Herb

-- Herb, Florida - Here's why I close most messages with "Be Careful!" http://lumberjocks.com/HerbC/blog/17090

View Vasko's profile

Vasko

271 posts in 1187 days


#11 posted 1103 days ago

I love it, too – beautiful! The design of the bookcase is a great balance of solid, sturdy looks with flowing lines. The curve at the top, combined with the gorgeous trim you made, creates a focal point and leads the eye up. This is a favorite piece for me!

-- - Cindy, texture freak -

View dmoney's profile

dmoney

191 posts in 1580 days


#12 posted 1103 days ago

i love the trim.

-- Derek, Iowa

View a1Jim's profile (online now)

a1Jim

109323 posts in 2078 days


#13 posted 1103 days ago

Unique crown details well done.

-- http://artisticwoodstudio.com Custom furniture

View Lyn's profile

Lyn

237 posts in 1129 days


#14 posted 1103 days ago

Beautiful piece! You’ve transformed the utilitarian bookcase into an eye catching piece of furniture. The lightness of the sapwood on the edge of the top and the light stripes on the banding really set the piece off.
It draws the eye to the bookcase, and then the figure and frame/panel sides are revealed. Nice work.

View darrensaathoff's profile

darrensaathoff

19 posts in 1105 days


#15 posted 1102 days ago

Very nice! I like the extra detail at the top. My wife has been wanting me to make a book case also. I hope to start it soon . Thanks for sharing.

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