Toy Chest: Designing the Details
I spent a lot of time designing not only the entire chest proportions, shape and construction – but also the finer details found throughout the chest. These are extremely important to set the chest apart from other crafted furniture – making it an elegant, highly interesting piece of furniture.
I don’t recall where I read it, but I think it was George Walker either in his blog or in a Popular Woodworking article that he wrote. It was about designing furniture for the Far, Medium and Close views. A piece should not only draw in a person to inspect it, but reveal more character at each level. At the far view you notice the overall shape, proportions and main elements. As you move closer, the piece reveals medium details such as hardware, wood figure or large decorative elements. As you lean in, the inlay, carving, pegs and other small pieces show themselves. I really like this line of thinking and want to make sure that my pieces of furniture cover all three views.
The other influence to this piece came from a class I recently took from Darrell Peart on Greene and Greene details. G&G constantly re-used a variety of details on both their architecture and their furniture. We reviewed these in class, building a small sample piece that had a few of their most-used details. I thought about those details, what I think they do for a piece and created some of my own either directly or indirectly from their style.
This video shows the design at different levels and how Greene & Greene influenced my work.