Cherry Armoire

The cherry armoire is complete, after many months of work. It is installed in the mudroom. The unstained (natural) cherry matches our kitchen cabinets and should darken over the next few months.

Armoire (click on pic for better view; click again for enlargement)
Woodsmith Plan Cover Finished Armoire
Cherry Armoire

Using plans that I bought from Woodsmith, I built this cherry armoire for the mudroom. I spent many hours over a few months making it starting with rough-cut cherry, cherry plywood, and maple that I bought in New Hampshire at Northland Forest Products (Another option was Highland Hardwoods, down the road, or Seacoast in Sanford, ME, or Goosebay Lumber.) The lumber was 13/16-inch thick and needed to be planed. Cost was $750. All the details are in the plans. I made a few modifications, omitting the LHS shelves in favor of two coat hanging areas and making four drawers instead of three to allow one lower drawer to pull out in front of the adjacent sitting bench. Here is a movie of the finished product; below are hi-res images that you can click on for full resolution.

Armoire (click on pic for better view; click again for enlargement)

Some details. I used my new sawstop table saw to cut accurately and precisely. I used the new Pantorouter to do the drawer rear dovetails. I used the old table saw with a 1/4-inch dado blade to cut the front drawer joints, the drawer bottom dados, and all the frame dados. I used the pantorouter to cut the mortise and tenon joints. For two reasons some of the mortise and tenon joints are not the greatest (misalignment) due to inconsistent thinning on the 13/16 rough cherry using the planer and lack of precision on my old table saw. On the drawers, I used 1/2-inch maple for the sides and 3/4-inch cherry for the fronts. To make blind joints, I omitted the dovetails in the front and used a modified quarter-quarter-half method; see pic. I did not stain the piece; I applied 3-4 coats of water-based varnish, based on Bob Thomason’s advice. The varnish worked well, but the 3-4 coats were necessary.

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