Arts and Crafts/Mission Formal Amoire

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Project by Dusty posted 02-05-2007 02:20 AM 3186 views 9 times favorited 13 comments Add to Favorites Watch

This Arts and Crafts/Mission Style (modified) Red Oak Armoire with Solid oak raised panel doors and arched top was a challenge to build. I built it in two pieces so I could move it, as its over all size makes it a large piece. It is 4 foot wide 7 foot tall and 20 inches deep.

I designed this to hold my TV/DVD and all my stereo components in my living room. I wanted to hide them from view until I was able to finish my home theater – which is now complete. I use this for storage now. I modified the inside so I can store various items.

The two piece construction not only made it more functional but presented a number of challenges to build. All the trim and raised panels are solid oak and were, built in my shop.

By far the most difficult task, was building the arch top. I constructed a jig and built a proto type out of cardboard first-then transferred it to the wood.

I had a plan which I used only as a guide- then modified it to two pieces and too fit my needs and tastes.

This project took about 4 weeks to build. I also had other projects going on in various stages during this time.

I finished it using my 12 step mission staining process.

-- Dusty

13 comments so far

View Dick, & Barb Cain's profile

Dick, & Barb Cain

8693 posts in 4300 days

#1 posted 02-05-2007 02:51 AM

Another beauty, I love Red Oak. I’ll bet it weighs a ton with all that oak, you could never move it in one piece.

-- -** You are never to old to set another goal or to dream a new dream ****************** Dick, & Barb Cain, Hibbing, MN.

View Obi's profile


2213 posts in 4238 days

#2 posted 02-05-2007 03:35 AM

I’m very impressed with the arched top.

Can you explain the 12 step mission staining process?

View Dusty's profile


785 posts in 4157 days

#3 posted 02-05-2007 03:38 AM

Thanks Dick,

That was only one problem. In my old house that I rehabbed I never had the clearance for the stairways and entrees not to mention trying to get around the small tight corners. Hence the mother of invention-necessity.

Two pieces was the answer.


-- Dusty

View Dusty's profile


785 posts in 4157 days

#4 posted 02-05-2007 03:51 AM


I am happy to repost this for you.

The staining process I use now replaced a number of different ones I used to use, that I don’t any longer use for several reasons anymore. I find this gives me the most consistent results for mission look with out all the pitfalls such as the toxic fumes from ammonia fuming. I know there are many ways to stain mission and I merely have found this one to work the best for me. I’m not saying it is the best; merely it has worked well for over 200 pieces of mission furniture in the last 3 years.
1. Use a natural stainable wood filer, where needed.
2. Sand to 100 grit finish.
3. Sand to final 220 finish
4. Mix water soluble yellow dye and let sit 12 hours. (then hand apply with cheesecloth)
5. After yellow dye is applied and dry, hand sand with 400 ( the water based stain will raise grain of wood)
6. Apply your first coat of mixed stain or use Red Mahogany (results are close) , use a soft cloth or disposable paper rag and gloves
7. Let dry and apply second coat stain by hand rubbing in to the wood firmly.
8. Apply a 2lb cut amber Shellac, let dry completely.
9. Apply another coat of cut Shellac.
10. Hand sand with 400 and tack coat dust off wood.
11. Apply 3 coats of Arm-R-Seal. Letting dry between coats.
12 Touch up as needed.

I hope it is helpful. Any questions please ask.


-- Dusty

View Don's profile


2603 posts in 4178 days

#5 posted 02-05-2007 02:03 PM

I never cease to be impressed with your work, Dusty, it’s exceptional. I love the finish your staining process achieves. I believe you have shown us this finish only applied to Oak (i may be wrong). Have you tried this on any other species? I’m wondering how it would work with some of our Australian wood.

-- CanuckDon "I just love small wooden boxes!"

View Dusty's profile


785 posts in 4157 days

#6 posted 02-05-2007 05:38 PM

Thanks Don,

I haven’t tried that stain on anyting but oak, the reason for it is two fold. One, I designed it for a mission look with a golden hue look to match my woodwork in my home. That hue comes from the yellow dye. Two, I havent had any need or calls for other types of wood.


-- Dusty

View Cathy Krumrei's profile

Cathy Krumrei

364 posts in 4187 days

#7 posted 02-07-2007 05:38 AM

You guys sure can build awesome furniture! I really enjoy everyones posts and it’s a thrill to be able to see such wonderful work. Keep posting those pictures!

View jockmike2's profile


10635 posts in 4247 days

#8 posted 02-07-2007 03:24 PM

Great looking piece Dusty, you make me envious. Thats quite the formula you have there did you develope it on your own? mike

-- (You just have to please the man in the Mirror) Mike from Michigan -

View Dusty's profile


785 posts in 4157 days

#9 posted 02-07-2007 06:03 PM


The stain process is a result of several failures and various other buddies who do wookworking and have tried diferent things over the years. In other words not all mine- but my failures – and others-led me to keep looking for a process that would be less toxic and a lot less work -for a consistant, desired , high quality result every time. That it does.


-- Dusty

View oscorner's profile


4563 posts in 4312 days

#10 posted 02-08-2007 06:36 AM

Excellent work Dusty!

-- Jesus is Lord!

View Mark A. DeCou's profile

Mark A. DeCou

2009 posts in 4406 days

#11 posted 02-10-2007 04:18 PM

Very nice. I can’t imagine that you could have been able to move such a large piece had you not broken it into two sections. I posted a Forum question months ago about that topic, as I just built something that was so heavy that even in sections it was a chore to move with a helper.

Great work, your home is lovely, wish I could take a tour sometime with your neighbors.

-- Mark DeCou - American Contemporary Craft Artisan -

View Dusty's profile


785 posts in 4157 days

#12 posted 02-10-2007 04:43 PM

Thanks Mark,

So many of those “old” large pieces simply weren’t practical for many of us who live in old homes that have the narrow halls, short head room in the stair areas and sharp corners with small exit doors.

I also designed and built a small version I call “apartment size” for those who live in small quaters. For that matter it works ell in a spare small bedroom . It also works great is practical if you have kids who go off to college and live in a dorm. I will be posting that piece soon.

Soon I will post the a video virtual tour of my home for those who are intrested. I have to wait until the HGTV show is done runing. I will let you know if you like when I do.



-- Dusty

View Dusty's profile


785 posts in 4157 days

#13 posted 02-10-2007 04:49 PM

I get a lot of questions what I use for the yellow dye for the mission stain process I use to achieve that look for my mission pieces. I use Transfast, lemon soluble dye, number # 3287 it comes in one oz plastic bottle for about 6 dollars.

I buy it at but I’m sure its available at any woodworking store.

One bottle mixed lasts a long time and it keeps forever. I mix it up in a old qt pickle jar.


-- Dusty

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