Wednesday, January 29, 2014

Lupe's Shaker Cabinet

It amazes me to think about the work that people are producing at my school. I've written about Lupe before; she's been studying at my shop for about three years. Take a look at these pieces of furniture that she's built.  

This magnificent Walnut  bookcase,  

this Cherry rocking chair,

 and this Mahogany table. She actually made a limited edition of 12 of these tables, and has sold all but a couple. 

So when she said she wanted to make a tall dresser, with a lot of drawers and maybe a couple of doors, I had no doubt she would do a terrific job. 

If you Google shaker style dressers, or armoires, you'll find a lot of wonderful examples like these. 

To add a little complexity to this project, Lupe chose to make this piece out of Cherry plywood. Building with plywood brings a few challenges to the mix, especially when camouflaging the plywood edges. Making the plywood cabinet didn't take too long, but it took a while to get the face frame attached to the cabinet. 

After the face frame was attached,  Lupe decided to oil the lower part and hang all the drawers. If you know anything about furniture making - then you know that hanging drawers can be very time-consuming. 

Hanging seven drawers can take hours!  These are inset drawers, so all of the margins around them have to be perfect. That means that your carcass has to be perfectly square. And let's face it - that's not always the way things turn out. So each drawer has to be fitted with hand plane, and carefully hung.  

Next, she had to make doors - and once again - she upped her game 

and made raised panel doors. 

She's a stickler for great finishing, so she applied six coats of Watco danish oil, and then finished it off with a coat of wax. 

I just wish you could feel how smooth this cabinet is! 

The work that some of these people are producing is simply amazing, and even though they credit me with helping them along - what I do is about 5% of the work that it takes to build a piece like this. 

I couldn't be more proud!

1 comment:

Vegas Lupe said...

Wow! I get tired by seeing a review of the items I have made in the past few years. It has been a great ride so far. After all the work and effort one has something of lasting permanence to show for it. Woodworking done right is immensely rewarding.

I would like to encourage anyone who is interested in learning this craft to check out your school, take a class and even come visit us on Saturdays. The vibe and the energy of the place are incredible with at least half a dozen people working on a variety of projects. Having that atmosphere is conducive to great learning and productivity. I not only learn from the project I currently build, but learn vicariously by watching others and seeing how they tackle each challenge and detail along the way.

Thank you, Jamie, for your guidance and support! You are an awesome teacher!