I have been busy with one thing or another lately, and have not had a chance to shoot much stuff in the workshop. At home, I am starting the process of picking photos and writing text for the book Jennie Alexander & I have underway on making a joined stool. At the same time, I am preparing for a demonstration I have next month at Winterthur Museum, including some stool assembly. The stuff at Winterthur is in conjunction with an exhibition there that is focused on Southeaster Massachusetts furniture. So I have been scanning old slides of work we have studied from Plymouth Colony, hence the joined form stile in the photo above, and related stuff below.
There are a few pieces we’ve seen over the years that were turned with the same details; including these detail of joined pieces, a stool from a private collection, and a table with the same pattern:
It’s been a long time since I have looked at much of the Plymouth Colony furniture. Some of it is really quite nice. The principal book on it is Robert Blair St George’s The Wrought Covenant. Now out of print, but worth running down if you like this stuff.
Last time I looked at Plymouth stuff was a few years back when I started a long project to study London joiners, searching for men who trained there & came to New England. So far the first I have identified & published is Kenelm Winslow, who came to Plymouth in 1629. The article about Winslow’s London record is online at the website of Antiques and Fine Art:
5 thoughts on “Plymouth Colony joinery”
If intested, look at Peter’s article on Kenelm Winslow and Plymouth Colony and Marshfield joinery cited at the end of this blog. Just click on the cite and there you are. The article is an example of Peter’s careful research and writing. It may sound strange that I toot my co-author’s horn. But, if there be any doubt, I am compelled to declare that though I got him into thus mess, Peter has passed me far by in all respects. His ability to seamlessly combine the actual daily practice of joinery with study of surviving artifacts, tools, period documents and visual arts is wonderful. My entusiastic beginnings would have gone nowhere without him. I am impressed and very grateful.
It’s interesting to see fillets between coves and beads. This really enhances the turned piece. I first saw it mentioned in the DVD that is bundles with Robert Sorby’s beginner’s turning tool set. It is not mentioned in the DVD’s I have by Richard Raffan, for example. It seems like a forgotten feature, not stressed enough in videos/DVD’s and in woodturning courses.
Eldad, from Israel.
(A Holly Land galoot)
When is your presentation at Winterthur, Peter? Looking forward to getting a copy of your and Jennie’s book!
the demo at Winterthur is part of a symosium/furniture forum there. I am one of the dog-and-pony shows before & after the program proper. So I am there Wed Apr 15 & Sat Apr 18.
Here’s the rundown on the program itself.
Thanks for your note…all that way.
The fillets really serve to break things up a bit, and add some visual impact with little effort. I just cut them in with the point of the skew…when it goes well they are a snap. when it goes badly is a different story…