On Golden Feet

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Project by HorstPeter posted 06-09-2015 09:50 PM 1562 views 2 times favorited 6 comments Add to Favorites Watch

After long silence and too many unfinished projects, I’ve finally managed to wrap up a few to post.

I’m starting off with one of my favorites so far. It’s been sitting around for ages and really just needed another layer of metal leaf to go over the parts that had oxidized in all that time.

On the 4th picture you can see the mechanism used to open the drawers. Basically just a slider to pop them out.

The dark base wood is European walnut and the inlay parts/drawer fronts are from an old and half-rotten apple tree we cut down in our garden some years ago. It’s pretty soft and somewhat mushy wood, but I really like the color and grain. Still got plenty of pieces left for future projects too. :)

Feet are carved from basswood with a layer of stone powder/hide glue mix and then metal leaf. I really want to try true gold leaf at some point, but felt safer starting off with the fake stuff first.

Finish is polished shellac over a base of walnut oil.

Thanks for looking, I hope you enjoy it!


6 comments so far

View shipwright's profile


8726 posts in 3912 days

#1 posted 06-09-2015 11:33 PM

It’s good to see you back Horst.
This is an interesting little mystery box. I like the hidden slider. The feet at interesting too. They make the box seem to be crouching on its haunches. The leaf is a nice touch and a lot more economical way to learn than with the real thing. I have used the imitation stuff and it looks pretty good.

Well done and welcome back.

-- Paul M ..............the early bird may get the worm but it’s the second mouse that gets the cheese!

View Mean_Dean's profile


7057 posts in 4261 days

#2 posted 06-09-2015 11:49 PM

Kind of a funky looking box you’ve got there! I like the wood combo you used and I love those feet!

Tell us more about the gold leaf process you used.

-- Dean -- "Don't give up the ship -- fight her 'till she sinks!" Capt James Lawrence USN

View a1Jim's profile


118162 posts in 4691 days

#3 posted 06-10-2015 04:56 AM

View HorstPeter's profile


121 posts in 3943 days

#4 posted 06-10-2015 05:29 PM

@shipwright – Thank you for the warm welcome back Paul. I’m glad you’re still around and active. I’ve taken a short look at your projects/blog and will be sure to give it a proper read soon. I can already tell there will be lots to admire and learn from.
It makes me happy that you find my little box here interesting. I always try to come up with a design that offers something to the viewer and combines different elements for some visual diversity.

@Mean_Dean – Great you love the feet! I’ve had some people tell me they look a bit too funky for their taste actually, but I like funky and different.
It’s the first time I did metal leafing and I didn’t really follow “proper” procedure I guess. I just read up a bit on it and then ended up mixing hot hide glue with some very fine and slightly pink-ish diatomaceous earth. I applied that to the legs carved from basswood in several layers and sanded it smooth to get a nice even base for the leaf. Then I brushed on rather diluted rabbits hide glue and applied the metal leaf.
After some drying time I brush off the excess leaf with a somewhat harder brush and fix any areas where it came off or it could do with another layer. Then I put on a slight layer of oil and afterwards some super-blonde shellac to prevent oxidation.

@a1Jim – Thank you. I always enjoy hearing that my creations are unique. It’s something I usually try to aim for.


View DKV's profile


3940 posts in 3618 days

#5 posted 06-10-2015 10:30 PM

Very cool box Horst. I like unique and yours fits the bill.

-- This is a Troll Free zone.

View oldnovice's profile


7708 posts in 4482 days

#6 posted 06-11-2015 04:55 PM

I really am enamored by the beautiful grain and contrast in the choice of woods/finish.

-- "It's fine in practise but it will never work in theory"

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