Empire Bookcase

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Project by Alan Young posted 08-05-2008 03:08 PM 1970 views 3 times favorited 17 comments Add to Favorites Watch

Over the last week or so I have been posting projects I have completed over the last couple of years or so. This is a bookcase I designed and built in 2006 for my own office. This is a rather bold and brassy piece. Literally. I designed and fabricated all the brass features and hardware on this bookcase except the door hinges and catches. These details include a medallion at the base, columns uniting the upper and lower cases, handles on the doors in the lower case, knobs on the map drawer, and finials to top the upper case.

The drawer is for maps and other pamphlets. The drawer has a lid so when you pull it out you can rest reading material on it or lift the lid to retrieve a map.

The design is based on architecture from the Empire Period-specifically the “Mansard Roof” line.

A theme of diamonds and turnings starts with the center top Pediment.

The side columns feature a 5/8” diamter rod separating a The base and top , each of which feature a 1/2” platform and four 1/2” diamter balls .

A Brass turned finial caps the design.

Hand turned hardware for the doors and drawer.

At the base- A medallion of Balls and Diamonds

In addition to the brass, this design features veneers of Quarter sawn Anigre, Cherry, Maple, Mahogany, and Red Oak. The frame is constructed of ebonized Walnut and Poplar with a shellac finish that yields a compliment to the brass, lighter veneers, and inlays. Thanks for looking. Alan

17 comments so far

View MsDebbieP's profile


18615 posts in 4212 days

#1 posted 08-05-2008 03:42 PM

this is astounding. The overall look, the design, the individual elements, the craftsmanship… Absolutely stunning

-- ~ Debbie, Canada (

View Greg Wurst's profile

Greg Wurst

794 posts in 3884 days

#2 posted 08-05-2008 03:59 PM


-- You're a unique and special person, just like everyone else.

View woodworm's profile


14468 posts in 3642 days

#3 posted 08-05-2008 04:33 PM

Great effort…
I just cannot imagine how I can turn the finial brass knobs.
Thanks for sharing with us.

-- masrol, kuala lumpur, MY.

View ryno101's profile


388 posts in 3716 days

#4 posted 08-05-2008 04:41 PM

Wow, that’s gorgeous… nice work!

-- Ryno

View Bigbuck's profile


1347 posts in 3715 days

#5 posted 08-05-2008 04:42 PM

Very nice details

-- Glenn, New Mexico

View stanley2's profile


344 posts in 3847 days

#6 posted 08-05-2008 04:47 PM

Alan, that is a lot of detail to bring together – nicely executed.

-- Phil in British Columbia

View Dennis Zongker's profile

Dennis Zongker

2751 posts in 3644 days

#7 posted 08-05-2008 06:47 PM

Great Job!!! I se our Marquetry book by Pierre Ramond on the shelf. Thanks for sharing.

-- Dennis Zongker

View Callum Kendall's profile

Callum Kendall

1918 posts in 3755 days

#8 posted 08-05-2008 06:49 PM

Great job!

Thanks for the post


-- For wood working podcasts with a twist check out

View jeanmarc's profile


1899 posts in 3768 days

#9 posted 08-05-2008 07:48 PM

very beautiful works. confirm the book of ramon Pierre is a very good book of reference

-- jeanmarc manosque france

View mcoyfrog's profile


4145 posts in 3646 days

#10 posted 08-05-2008 08:17 PM

WOW amazing detail, very nice…

-- Wood and Glass they kick (well you know) Have a great day - Dug

View trifern's profile


8135 posts in 3819 days

#11 posted 08-05-2008 09:45 PM

Nice looking piece of furniture. I like your attention to details. Thank you for sharing.

-- My favorite piece is my last one, my best piece is my next one.

View brianinpa's profile


1812 posts in 3775 days

#12 posted 08-06-2008 02:40 AM

Details, details, and details. I think you got them all with this one. Very nice work.

-- Brian, Lebanon PA, If you aren’t having fun doing it, find something else to do.

View Alan Young's profile

Alan Young

140 posts in 3772 days

#13 posted 08-06-2008 03:13 PM

I appreciate all the kinds words. And yes that Pierre Ramond Marquetry book is wonderful. Also appearing in the pictures is “Furniture” by Judith Miller-an outstanding resource. Here’s a review I wrote:

There is also a book on furniture from Winterthur -The DuPont Mansion….


View daveintexas's profile


365 posts in 3928 days

#14 posted 08-06-2008 03:26 PM

Wow, you have a real set of brass balls.
Your maquetry is simply fantastic, I am very envious as I am just starting down that road.

Keep the pictures coming they are a great insperation.

Thanks for posting

View dewoodwork's profile


184 posts in 4008 days

#15 posted 08-23-2008 07:22 PM

Amazing work. You are quite the talented artist. This piece certainly stands out in a crowd. I love it.

-- Express creativity with wood, Dewayne. Vacaville CA.

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