You can now buy “The Book of Plates” by A.-J. Roubo for just $49 – a significant savings from the regular $120 price. This the first sale we’ve had since we started Lost Art Press in 2007, and it likely will be the last.
This is a huge book – 11” x 17”. Printed in the United States on #100 Mohawk paper. Sewn and bound in Michigan. Beautifully made.
The book features all of the drawings (called “plates”) from André Roubo’s masterpiece “l’Art du menuisier.” There are detailed drawings of every kind of furniture form, plus tools, interior trim and architectural woodwork, carriage making, marquetry and garden furniture. It’s a fascinating and illustrated look into the 18th century world of material culture and woodwork.
Why is it on sale? We ordered way too many – a huge mistake. And the storage fees are significant for this book because of its size. Our choice: recycle the books for pulp or try to sell them at a crazy low price. We chose the latter because we hate to see such workmanship destroyed.
This is the last chance you’ll have to buy this book new. We won’t be reprinting it. So order now (or email us in 10 years begging us to reprint it….).
When we published “The Book of Plates” in 2014, we were under intense pressure from readers who wanted to see all the plates in A.-J. Roubo’s “l’Art du menuisier.” Lots of readers suggested we publish the plates by themselves. We resisted that idea at first, but we came around to it in the summer of 2014 over a fried chicken lunch.
As it turns out, “The Book of Plates” wasn’t a great idea – financially at least.
To make the book affordable, we had to print thousands of copies more than usual. We viewed this book a public service to the woodworking community, and we didn’t want the book to cost $500. But now, five years later, we are carrying a huge inventory of this enormous book. And we don’t sell many.
After much discussion and thought, John and I have decided to sell these books at a huge discount to get them out of the warehouse (and my cellar) and into the hands of woodworkers. We are not reprinting “Book of Plates.” When it’s gone, it’s gone.
The sale will start on May 14. The book is normally $120. Starting May 14 it will be $49 until we run out of books.
We’ve agonized over this problem for a couple years now and have looked for a way to correct our mistake. This sale – our first and I hope only sale in 12 years – is the best answer.
I know that most of you will support us through this. And I’m sure some of you have questions or complaints. You can get those answered via firstname.lastname@example.org.
In an effort to not lose more money on posters, we offer this full-resolution 11″ x 17″ image of A.J. Roubo’s famous Plate 11 for free. Download it, take the file to your local print shop and get it printed on a large-format printer.
The file is a jpg and is in full color. Print it out in color, and the background will resemble the rag paper used for the 1777 original. And the ink will be the dark dark brown found on the original.
If you are worried that the dude at the print shop will claim you need copyright clearance (for an image from 1777…?), print out this blog entry and take it along to the store.
“Hi. We (Lost Art Press) own the original of this image. The person holding this blog entry is allowed to print the image for their personal use. Thank you, print shop person.”
Why are we doing this? Several readers have asked for a Plate 11 poster. Instead of flushing away several hundred American dollars down the American Standard (and ending up with hundreds of unsold posters in my cellar), we decided to give the electronic image away (and use the money we saved for moss research).
I never get tired of this particular plate. It is so blinking odd. The scale of the jigs, tools and work hung on the walls of the workshop bear no connection to reality. The brace on the wall is the same size as one of the workers. However, if you own the “Book of Plates” you can play a fun game. All of the objects shown on the walls of Plate 11 are actually things found in other plates in the book.
I’m sure you could make it into a drinking game. Somehow.
If you’ve ever visited our storefront, you might have noticed that we wallpaper the men’s room with all manner of woodworking paraphernalia, from posters to old advertisements to poems.
I haven’t put anything up in the women’s room except a portrait of Juliette Caron. Every time I think to hang something in there, I ask Megan: “Is this too creepy for the women’s room?” And the look on her face says: Yes.
Case in point this vintage German newspaper I just purchased after a tip from Suzo “the Saucy Indexer” Ellison. Do I want this guy smiling at me when I do my business? Probably not, but it’s going in the men’s room anyway.
I hope (government mandates permitting) that you can come see the bathrooms for your own self. We still hope to open the doors to the public on June 13, 2020, for a special open day.
What’s going to be special? Blemished books. We are trucking 14 boxes of damaged and returned books to the storefront for the occasion. They will be 50 percent off of retail – cash only. (No, we cannot put them online. Sorry.) I don’t yet know what titles we’ll have. When I get them here I’ll post a list. But I do know we have a significant number of the now-discontinued “Book of Plates.”
We’ll also have our full line of new books and all the Crucible tools. We can take any form of payment for new books and tools – cash, check or credit.
So get healthy and hope for the best. If June doesn’t work, we’ll reschedule the open day for as soon as it is safe for everyone.
— Christopher Schwarz
P.S. What’s the image above about? Not sure. The blocks of text below it are from an unrelated article. The caption on the image is, according to a translation from Rudy Everts, basically, “When the cat’s away, the mice will play.” Even so, I’m not hanging this one above the Lost Art Press urinal.