Reply by Kelby

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Posted on Modern Federal Style Desk Leg?

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134 posts in 2380 days

#1 posted 03-06-2013 06:30 AM

Marcus, no I haven’t tried oysters and ice cream, and I don’t intend to. I don’t mean to discourage you if you wish to try them for the sake of something new, though.

I haven’t built from magazine plans in many years, and I applaud you for branching out. As you try new approaches, though, consider why they did the old things the old way. IMHO, the more massive pieces in the shaker/AC/mission styles work because of the simple, straight lines. The pleasing aesthetic is the strength of the material itself—a nice, strong block of wood. On the other hand, the Federal style gets away with all of the inlay, veneers, etc. because the delicate lines of the inlay and details compliment the delicate size of the material. The feet on the pieces in the various photos in this thread are a method for adding visual strength to a small leg without making it bulky. A 4” maple leg, on the other hand, does not require additional visual strength, and a foot looks out of place. It’s not a question of whether it’s OK to blend styles; the three blocky maple legs just look better than the shaped cherry leg, because the straight lines compliment the size of the leg better.

But in the end, you aren’t building it for me, so my opinion doesn’t matter. If it works for your eyes, then that’s the way you should build it!

-- Kelby

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