William & Mary Spice Box

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Project by bbrown posted 04-17-2015 12:54 AM 6286 views 35 times favorited 42 comments Add to Favorites Watch

I wanted to try a few new techniques, so I chose to make another spice box, this one in the Wm. & Mary style. I used maple burl veneer for the drawer fronts. The legs are ‘ebonised’ in the distinctive Wm. & Mary style. The period would be around 1730, and this was something that might have been made in Chester County, Pennsylvania, my home (growing up).

Fairly unique to Chester Co. was the ‘line and berry’ inlay, using holly. I styled mine (on the inside of the doors) from a piece I saw at the Wintertur estate and museum in DE.

Drawer and lower apron are cock-beaded. The walnut for the apron cock beading was steamed (with a lobster boiler connected to a gas hose into a piece of PVC _ I used to use it for bending red oak for windsor chairs), then bent to shape in bending forms (see photo). I made a veneer press for this project that should be useful in the future. It’s just two triple thick slabs of MDF and some bowed cauls that I clamp in a sandwich. It worked great.

Primary wood is walnut. Inlay is holly and red cedar. Finish is shellac.

There are 5 secret compartments. It’s fun coming up with new ways to hide drawers.

Thanks for looking and God bless,

-- Traditional Woodworking & Carving classes at my shop in Coastal Maine:

42 comments so far

View wunderaa's profile


248 posts in 3445 days

#1 posted 04-17-2015 01:47 AM

Wow. I’m not worthy!

View HillbillyShooter's profile


5811 posts in 3534 days

#2 posted 04-17-2015 01:51 AM

Very impressive! Beautiful! Thanks for sharing.

-- John C. -- "Firearms are second only to the Constitution in importance; they are the peoples' liberty's teeth." George Washington

View blasley's profile


32 posts in 2457 days

#3 posted 04-17-2015 02:11 AM

Absolutely stunning! Just curious how many hours, weeks or months you have invested in this beauty. It would be decades for me.

-- Bob in Okieland

View Rayne's profile


1319 posts in 2782 days

#4 posted 04-17-2015 02:20 AM

picks up jaw from ground Absolutely stunning! I can only imagine the amount of time needed to make one of these…crazy! I can only hope I can make one of these one day; I’m still an amateur, but would love to try my hand at something like that later on…skill building through the years. lol.

View erm's profile


6 posts in 2378 days

#5 posted 04-17-2015 02:21 AM

wow. amazing

View sultanofsawdust's profile


10 posts in 2457 days

#6 posted 04-17-2015 02:57 AM

I would like to thank you for this. I showed this to my wife and she now wants to accelerate my hobby! Sweet!

View lightweightladylefty's profile


3660 posts in 4954 days

#7 posted 04-17-2015 04:02 AM

Exquisite! Your workmanship is sensational.


-- “Those who would give up essential Liberty, to purchase a little temporary Safety, deserve neither Liberty nor Safety.” Benjamin Franklin -- Jesus is the ONLY reason for ANY season.

View bobasaurus's profile


3735 posts in 4426 days

#8 posted 04-17-2015 05:58 AM

Holy hell, this is one of the nicest woodworking projects I’ve seen. The bent lamination, line and berry work, and spindles are amazing.

-- Allen, Colorado (Instagram @bobasaurus_woodworking)

View Colin's profile


174 posts in 2606 days

#9 posted 04-17-2015 06:25 AM

Awsome is a very over-used word on the LJ site…..but in your case it DEFFINITELY applies – thanks for sharing and the inspiration!

-- Live Forever...............or Die Trying

View deon's profile


2522 posts in 4268 days

#10 posted 04-17-2015 07:32 AM

Great work!

-- Dreaming patterns

View stefang's profile


17040 posts in 4576 days

#11 posted 04-17-2015 08:12 AM

Excellent work on this beautiful cabinet and great wood choices too. You must be very proud of it.

-- Mike, an American living in Norway.

View oldreddog's profile


165 posts in 3575 days

#12 posted 04-17-2015 10:46 AM

Now thats wood working…very nice.

-- oldreddog

View Dennis Zongker's profile

Dennis Zongker

2858 posts in 4834 days

#13 posted 04-17-2015 12:17 PM

Absolutely beautiful. Congrat’s on a job very well done.

-- Dennis Zongker

View bibb's profile


332 posts in 4773 days

#14 posted 04-17-2015 12:27 PM

If I can learn half of what you have forgotten I will be happy. That is excellent craftsmanship.

-- you may only live once, but if you do it right that's all you need

View buck_cpa's profile


150 posts in 3129 days

#15 posted 04-17-2015 01:39 PM

Beautiful!! What method did you use for the inlay work – lining?

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