Cherry & Bird's Eye Maple Armoire

This armoire features some stunning veneer.

SHOP OWNER: Chris Knob
LOCATION: Wallingford, PA

    Earlier this year I accepted a commission to build a storage unit for a clientís bedroom. They live in an old Victorian style house and although the rooms have many nooks and crannies, there is little closet space. My solution was an armoire, which would provide space for hanging jackets and pants while the drawers provided storage for other items. Despite its potential for a massive footprint, the unit fits well in the room space and has a beautiful presence.

  Cherry & Bird's Eye Maple Armoire

    The end panels, within the cherry frames, as well as the drawer fronts, are from bird's eye maple veneer, which I cut from some spectacular stock. The stock, a single piece of 12/4 quilted maple, contained heavy figure on both sides and yielded 26 individual pieces of veneer. Each one was ten inches wide and six feet long.
Cherry & Bird's Eye Maple Armoire

    I resawed the veneers using my Jet 14" bandsaw equipped with a Woodslicer blade and retrofitted with a Baldor 1 1/2 horsepower motor. Using a vacuum veneer press, I attached the panels onto 1/8" and 1/4" plywood.
Cherry & Bird's Eye Maple Armoire

    The door panels are solid birdís eye maple; each cut from wide 8/4 stock and bookmatched. The arch of the armoire consists of three sheets of 1/4" cherry veneered plywood, laminated, and bent on an MDF frame. The arched and straight crown molding came from 8/4 cherry stock, which I milled on my Jet 1 1/2 horsepower shaper. For the profile, I used a custom gooseneck cutter from Freeborn Tools along with descending diameter ball bearing rub collars to the desired depth.
    The drawers are poplar with birdís eye maple veneered fronts and dovetailed on a Leigh D4 jig. The finish is linseed oil followed by nitrocellulose lacquer.

. . . Chris Knob



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