Chris wrote about the stool book the other day;  our end of it is winding down now. I made several stools during the course of shooting photos for it. Often I just needed a detail of one process or another; so the last two were a couple of shorter joint stools just to use up some random stock  Here’s one of them:


child's joint stool


This one has carved aprons – I often have carvings laying around, having done them as demos or instruction. I think one rail was just that, then I made the others to match.  Watch this blog for some unexpected uses of carving patterns.

The other night I watched some episodes of Roy Underhill’s show, one of which was the joint stool one we did with Megan Fitzpatrick.

I was reminded that one of the stools I took down to the Woodwright’s School last summer served multi-duty – teaching example/sample, and TV prop, then photo fodder for the book. Finally, I finished building the thing – and photographed it for real the other day.


child's joint stool w scrolled stretchers


The apron has a braid carved in it; I discussed this on the blog when I cut these rails;

There is also a scrolled stretcher; I didn’t discuss this in the book. They are simple enough to do; here is a period example on a joined chair from Plymouth Colony. This chair has long since been restored; rather generically. This pre-restoration photo shows the scrolled profile on the aprons, stretchers and rear rail just above the seat.


Plymouth Colony wainscot chair, pre-restoration

Here, you can see the same stuff on the side rails too.

side view


This pattern works easily if you first cut a rabbet in the rail. Then the scroll work/chisel work is done in a piece of oak that’s half the thickness…makes sense. I bore a hole at one end of the scroll, make some sawcuts here & there, then cut out the details with a chisel and mallet. You can use a bow-saw, turning saw, whatever it’s called, or just shape it with chisels and straight saw cuts. Hmmm. Now that’s another photo essay at some point. Not this week, though…

Meanwhile, here’s a re-assigned carving -

re-assigned carving


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