Joined chests are the hallmark of seventeenth-century work. Oak, frame & panel construction, and decorative carving are the main features. I’ve been making these since 1989. There’s lots of variations; but generally they are about 48″-55″ wide, 26″-36″ high and 20″-24″ deep.
This carved oak chest has a white pine lid and bottom boards. This one is based on a group of period examples I have been studying since the early 1990s. The originals were made by William Savell and his sons John & William in Braintree, Massachusetts, c. 1640-1700. This group is a long-time favorite of mine; I make chests and boxes based on them continually.
H: 27″ W: 52 1/2″ D: 22″
Here is another chest I made, based on examples of another favorite; the carved works of Ipswich, Massachusetts joiner Thomas Dennis.
H: 32″ W: 49″ D: 21″
Prices for wainscot chests start at $6,000.
Additional options include a drawer/drawers below, oak lid instead of pine, etc. The one below is a chest with drawers; two full-width drawers suspended below the chest compartment.
Another variation is a chest of drawers. No lid, just four to six drawers in front. The first one is a four-drawer example, in oak, pine and maple.
The one below is the cream of the crop. Two cases, six drawers in all. Oak, cedar, rosewood and more.
2 thoughts on “Joined & carved chests”
I am now in possession of the “family Oak Chest” that came from Somersetshire, England in 1849 when the ancestors came to America. Your joined and carved chest is it! The story is that it was made in the 1700s. Don’t know how my family came to be owners of it. I am interested in researching possible decorative wood carving designs from that time in Somersetshire or Dorsetshire or maybe it was carved in some other location.
Any information about carving designs you could share with me would be greatly appreciated.
Thank you, B. Floor
[…] book, Joiners Work, and am in the middle of building a cabinet very similar in construction to the 17th century joined chests he specializes in. Many of the chests feature a moulding detail in the center of a rail or style […]