Blanket Chest - Mission / Art&Crafts Style

  • Advertise with us
Project by HorizontalMike posted 09-03-2012 01:42 PM 9782 views 7 times favorited 28 comments Add to Favorites Watch

When I found the plans for this Mission / Arts & Crafts Blanket Chest in Wood Magazine (Feb./March 2005), I just knew that it would just look great sitting next to my first big furniture project, the Barrister’s Bookcase and it would provide additional temporary seating as a bench. As with the bookcase, I chose to do this in White Ash and match the Golden Oak staining.

Browsing around D. Lawless Hardware online, I found some really fun looking primitively carved Lion Head Corbels that I just had to have to add that touch of customization I wanted.

One of the things I did in order to have the ‘best’ grain on the base/frame was to cut a select piece of 8/4 Ash along the 8/4 side and then glue them up to get 4in wide Stiles and Rails that were 1/4-sawn. That piece of Ash I selected appears to have been one of the first cut from a very large log and the grain was almost parallel to the width of the board. This was NOT good in the traditional sense but when cut as I described, it offered up perfectly straight-grained pieces that could be glued together almost invisibly. I had to alter the plans in that they called for the outer stiles to be 4 1/4in wide. This would have left me in a lurch, but with the use of 1/4in “Space Balls” in the dados, that extra 1/2in of space, along the front and rear, was utilized to my advantage without having to alter any other dimensions. And THIS time, when cutting the board for quartersawn grain, the resulting boards remained straight! Last time I did this, using Maple, the resulting quartersawn boards warped more than usual.

On this project, I purposely chose to make ALL dados and tenons using only the tablesaw. While I had earlier built a horizontal mortising machine, I just wanted the experience on the tablesaw. This turned out to be a mixed blessing in that the tablesaw dados were faster to cut, though not quite as accurate even when using my Super Sled. I am sure some of that inaccuracy came from my inexperience and my NOT clamping the piece onto the sled each and every time. In the above last image in the set you can see where I had to shim the dado for the floor of the chest on the underside. I had made the mistake in measurement and had cut my floor piece dado one blade width too wide. The rest are just fillers for the legs. The shim fix came off really well, but lesson learned for sure. As a matter of fact, after completing this chest, I built a nice hardwood adjustable Dado Jig to take the guess work out of my dados in the future.

More here:

-- HorizontalMike -- "Woodpeckers understand..."

28 comments so far

View david38's profile


3518 posts in 3151 days

#1 posted 09-03-2012 01:46 PM

nice looking chest.

View woodworm's profile


14477 posts in 4398 days

#2 posted 09-03-2012 02:30 PM

Beautifully done. Great job!

-- masrol, kuala lumpur, MY.

View AngieO's profile


1267 posts in 2955 days

#3 posted 09-03-2012 02:31 PM

Very nice. The lion heads add a lot of interest to this piece.

View a1Jim's profile


118104 posts in 4385 days

#4 posted 09-03-2012 02:57 PM

Great looking Chest Mike,the corbels really give it a unique flavor.


View tinnman65's profile


1406 posts in 4222 days

#5 posted 09-03-2012 06:31 PM

Nice work Mike, It looks great next to the bookcase. I had to laugh when I saw the fifth picture, it looks like the lion’s are screaming because you have clamps on their faces!

-- Paul--- Creativity is allowing yourself to make mistakes. Art is knowing which ones to keep. — Scott Adams

View gfadvm's profile


14940 posts in 3498 days

#6 posted 09-04-2012 01:41 AM

That turned out just super and the lions added significantly to the overall look.

-- " I'll try to be nicer, if you'll try to be smarter" gfadvm

View thelastdetailcww's profile


61 posts in 2966 days

#7 posted 09-04-2012 01:53 AM

Good looking chest Mike, ditto on tinnman65 comments. I had a good laugh.

-- Ken

View Gshepherd's profile


1727 posts in 3009 days

#8 posted 09-04-2012 02:44 AM

Very nice chest and the Lion Heads are a real nice touch…...

-- What we do in life will Echo through Eternity........

View dnick's profile


986 posts in 3190 days

#9 posted 09-04-2012 03:41 AM

I like it. Great job, those corbels really set it apart.

-- dnick, North Hollywood, Ca.

View doordude's profile


1085 posts in 3790 days

#10 posted 09-04-2012 05:17 AM

great workmanship. love the lions,worth the purchase

View JerryLab's profile


10 posts in 4563 days

#11 posted 09-04-2012 10:04 AM

Looks great!

-- Jerry, Waupaca, WI

View HorizontalMike's profile


7874 posts in 3722 days

#12 posted 09-04-2012 12:54 PM

Hey thanks folks. I guess what attracted me to the Lion corbels is that they bring to my mind a younger time in my life and make me think that this chest could be some child’s Toy Chest, full of wonders and dreams about the future.

This chest seemed much easier to do than the Barrister’s bookcase project. Either that, OR… I actually AM starting to learn more in my WW-ing hobby. ;-) I enjoyed building this project the most in what limited projects I have completed thus far. The fun is growing on me 8-)

Paul, yeah I tried to flatten the lion’s noses. Maybe I was getting back at my house cats for thinking/acting like they are alarm clocks ;-)

-- HorizontalMike -- "Woodpeckers understand..."

View kdc68's profile


2987 posts in 3084 days

#13 posted 09-04-2012 09:01 PM

Great looking blanket chest. You have a nice organized shop too

-- Measure "at least" twice and cut once

View 489tad's profile


3865 posts in 3819 days

#14 posted 09-05-2012 05:35 PM

Very nice blanket chest. I checked out your web site and thats pretty cool.

-- Dan, Naperville IL, I.G.N.

View DLawlessHardware's profile


16 posts in 2892 days

#15 posted 09-10-2012 07:40 PM

Mike! Great work! The chest looks great! Thanks so much for mentioning our store! If you didn’t already know, there is a coupon at D. Lawless Hardware. Entering “lumberjocks” during checkout will get you 10% off. Keep up the good work!

-- D. Lawless Hardware

showing 1 through 15 of 28 comments

Have your say...

You must be signed in to post the comments.

DISCLAIMER: Any posts on LJ are posted by individuals acting in their own right and do not necessarily reflect the views of LJ. LJ will not be held liable for the actions of any user.

Latest Projects | Latest Blog Entries | Latest Forum Topics