Last week I went to the Plymouth Antiquarian Society in Plymouth, Massachusetts to see this chest. It dates from the 1680s, made in Marshfield. Today this is called a six-board chest, in the period just a “board chest” or “board chest with drawer.” Oak front and pine otherwise. It’s the carving I wanted to see. Carved furniture from 17th-century Plymouth Colony is rare, usually it’s decorated with appied moldings and turnings.
I wanted to learn these two carving patterns for my upcoming demo at Winterthur. I intend to carve the upper design as a box front. In fact, there is a box with just that pattern at the Brooklyn Museum.
I did a quick run-through just so I wasn’t flying totally blind when the demo starts. For the carving itself, I used only 3 carving tools; a V-tool, a deep gouge, and a very shallow gouge. To accent the molding I used a smaller gouge.
There’s another version of the carving on the drawer front of this chest, more on that one next time.
to learn more about the Plymouth Antiquarian Society, see their website: