One for the Engraver


“The Furniture of Necessity” book will be written, illustrated and printed in the same spirit as the pieces of furniture between its covers. Instead of relying on SketchUp and digital photographs, the engraver will be making the plates for this book using the actual pieces as her guide.

While this will turn me into a furniture mover for the next 12 months, it also will result in illustrations that are rich in detail and unsanitized, unpasturized and un-homogenized. It will be like drinking the design warm from the the teat of (oh stop this line of thought now).

Today I finished up the six-board chest for the book by nailing on the escutcheon plate to the front. There will be no fake keyholes or keys or hat-tips to modern living. These pieces will work in the same way they worked 300 years ago.

I now have two of the pieces complete for the book. Twelve more to go.

— Christopher Schwarz

About Lost Art Press

Publisher of woodworking books and videos specializing in hand tool techniques.
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18 Responses to One for the Engraver

  1. calebjamesplanemaker says:

    Sweet lock. Is that what they call a clamshell lock?

    • lostartpress says:

      I have heard the names “crab” or “grab” lock. “Clamshell” would be a new one on me.

      • calebjamesplanemaker says:

        Oops. I commonly get my mollusks and crustaceans confused. Thanks for setting me straight. 🙂 You are right I was supposed to be thinking crab.

  2. tsstahl says:

    New pieces posted to the blog always garner questions, so I guess I’ll start. 🙂 Feel free to blow this off to spend your time on more substantial questions.

    Are those battens tapered?

  3. Daniel Roy says:

    Hi Chris,
    Looks great!
    What is the second piece you have done for the new book?

  4. tpier says:

    So do you have a projected ship date? Are you taking preorders?

  5. Jim Maher says:

    Can’t wait! This one is gonna be great.

  6. Luke Lorgé says:

    Lookin’ forward to it as always

  7. djgaloot says:

    Chris, you always inspire! So what is the line-up of projects? Sideboards or hutches included? 🙂

    • lostartpress says:

      Sideboards have an interesting history. As do the hutches and ambrys that are in the same category of: Store and serve food.

      I think my approach to this topic will be a bit surprising. And – I hope – something you will want for your home.

  8. Tom Dickey says:

    Will this be a discussion of the different pieces, or more a how to book.

  9. Kevin Thomas says:

    Very nicely done, Mr. Schwarz.

  10. wrduffield says:

    Don’t knock fake keyholes. They were a tradition that went all the way back to colonial times, at least on tall case clocks. In those days, if you were rich, you could afford a clock with a brass movement. If wou weren’t so rich, you bought a locally made clock with wooden gears. The problem with wooden gears is they don’t work with a winder key. Instead, you had to open the lower door and pull on the chains to wind them. But, if you needed to impress your friends, it was easy enough to make the clock appear to have an expensive brass movement. All you had to do was ask your clock maker to paint a pair of key holes on the face of the clock. From across the room, your guests couldn’t tell the difference.

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