Tag Archives: custom

Adult Dresser Set

AdultTallDresser     Certain purchases stand out because they in some way symbolize reaching a milestone.  A house is an obvious and big one; but not far down the list there are more mundane items, such as a washer and dryer or a first never-been-slept-on-by-another-human bed, that mark another rung up the ladder to adulthood.  In this case, it is a dresser set of Oregon white oak made for a friend that had recently reached another adult milestone of a first job after college.  Technically, a real job.   AdultHiddenBoxCurly Burly supplied the quarter-sawn white oak and black walnut lumber for the two piece dresser set: one short and wide with a vanity mirror and the other tall and skinny...and somewhere inside is a removable hidden compartment. AdultDresserWide

Bathroom Vanity

IMG_5656 (502x800) Who puts carpet in a water closet?  Not the current owner, but it was like that when they moved in and it must have been original to the house.  The master suite has a open floor plan and the photo(9) (428x640)bedroom and bath spaces share a room, but are separated by a bank of closets.  The floor plan gives a spacious feeling to the room, but the lack of more obvious boundaries (such as doors) to delineate the various spaces within the suite made it difficult to decide where to draw the lines.  The project budget ultimately decided how far to go with the tile; and I replaced the carpet with tile in the water closet and in front of the vanity for a nice update to the master bath, not to mention a more sanitary and practical floor covering for such a location.  The layout of the new maple cabinets was basically the same, but tweaked to accommodate a second sink with drawers worked in below the plumbing for added storage.  The client and I picked a manufactured stone remnant at a local yard and had the sinks under mounted.   IMG_5658 (505x800)

Big Ponderosa Table

PineTable 010 (800x434) Dining room table and chair set made from ponderosa pine accented with black walnut.  The live-edged table top is a single slab, approximately 42" wide; and its 250+ pounds is supported by a variation of a trestle style base, joined to the top by dovetail grooves that allow the top to freely shrink and swell.  The chairs are upholstered in leather, and a book matched pine panel accents each chair back. PineTable 044 (800x533) The slab was milled from a 280+ year old ponderosa on the edge of the Middle Fork Willamette River valley.  The big ponderosa pine forests in Oregon are found mainly on the dry side of the Cascade Range at relatively high elevation; but known locally as valley pine (or more officially pacific ponderosa pine), this subspecies grows at low elevation along the margins of the valley and is well adapted to the areas mild winters and seasonally soggy clay-rich soils.  This particular tree came down in a wind storm in 2009, and the property owner was a friend of the client and had milled the tree by chainsaw.  No small feat for a tree of that size. BigPineTable (640x388) Pine is generally soft, and ponderosa is no different; although, because it is old growth and is made of hundreds of growth rings tightly stacked together, it is significantly harder than the plantation grown pine found at the home improvement store.  It may not be ideal for a heavy use table top, but given the uniqueness of the wood and the clients connection to the property and owner, that limitation was easily accepted.

Vero Coffee Bar

As part of an expansion of the outdoor deck seating at Vero, I added a chinquapin bar top in the hallway seating area.  Although chinquapin is not a commonly used in woodworking, for this project it VeroBar (2)was the perfect choice: locally harvested, a warm-toned wood that would blend nicely with the Douglas fir floors and doors, takes a finish and will wear well in a coffee house, and relatively economical.  Chinquapin is often a smaller tree (in comparison with the big leaf maple, Douglas fir, and other trees that live in its neighborhood) and yields lumber of relatively small dimension and abundant knots; but Curly Burly had some larger material with few knots and was perfect for this project.  

Before and After Bath

Panorama A before and after image of a small bathroom remodel (pictures taken from different perspectives).  The homeowner wanted to update the look of the small guest bathroom by adding tile to the floor, wainscot to the walls, and custom vanity cabinet and medicine cabinet trim.  To the left of the vanity, aHiddenPanel panel door on a push latch opens to reveal a bit of hidden storage. The homeowner liked the look and space saving of using a one-piece vanity sink/top, but we were both unimpressed with the quality of the off-the-shelf cabinets.  The cabinets we found were made overseas using materials that would not hold up well in the moist conditions of a bathroom.  The prefab cabinets look nice in the show room, but after a few years of being exposed to normal use in a humid environment, the mdf (or whatever the fiber press board material) begins to swell and flake the paint, and the hardware begins to loose its grip and pull out of the doors and face frame.  As they say, the cheap becomes expensive.  This vanity cabinet was made with poplar grown right here in Oregon, and finished with a high quality, low-VOC alkyd paint that will wear well in a bathroom.  All three drawers are usable to maximize storage capacity, and the top two are U-shaped to accommodate the the plumbing drain assembly. In a small space like this, sneaky storage goes a long way to making things feel bigger than they really are.  

Walnut Mantle

WalnutMantleArch The former fireplace surround was porcelain tile and painted mdf, and the homeowner was looking to make use of local materials to update the focal point of the living room.  The tile was replaced with travertine, and the nicely figured black walnut was milled by Curly Burly.  I used a hand-rubbed Polyx Oil finish to really help the figure pop.  Often, some of the more muted violet and grey tones in black walnut will become less distinct when finished; and I was pleased that the color variations remained so prominent in the finished piece. WalnutMantle    

Why Do Clothes Need a Ladder?

BlWalnutLadder Ladder2.0 Like most good ideas, this one had already been thought of; and, the idea for the clothes ladder came to me from a friend that had seen one at a hotel in Laos.  It is a home for clothes that are neither clean nor dirty, and is inspired by the idea that mostly-clean clothes could go somewhere besides in a pile on the floor.  Made from locally-harvested hardwoods, this is purgatory for your clothes.    

Cherry Kitchen

Whenever I deliver work, I will often tell clients that the first time they see it completed will be the "worst" that it will look, under the logic that, with time, the color and visual depth of the wood will only improve.  If that is true for most woods, cherry stands out as one that takes years (or at least many months) to really develop its full depth.  With a good quality oil or wax based finish and no stain, cherry will develop a rich red-burnt brown color on its own.  For this kitchen, the client wanted the final color to be less dark than a natural finished cherry, and to be orange without being identifiably orange.

Saylor Painting worked up an array of samples, and we decided on a finish that started with a deep yellow dye-stain, followed by a more orange-brown pigmented stain, and topped with a couple coats of water-based lacquer.  This method yielded a bright red, orange-but-not-orange, tone.  With the water-based lacquers, which tend to have somewhat less depth of color and luster versus their solvent-based cousins, it is especially difficult to achieve a deeply toned color to the wood; but Saylor really made nice work of it.

The south facing wall of this kitchen is framed by two sets of corner windows that shower the space with natural light; and now that the cabinets have been in place for nearly a year and the color has developed, the wood simply glows.  Aside from the stain on the cabinets, I can claim no responsibility for the color scheme in the kitchen; and all that credit goes to the client.  The combination of creamy walls with the black granite counters and the black, white, and grey glass tile backsplash allow for the cabinets to really stand out.

A set of three pull-out pantry cabinets were a solution to the problem of limited wall space, as there was no feasible location for a large wall pantry cabinet.  (There was little available space for upper cabinets, perhaps the downside of two corner window sets, two passages to adjacent rooms, an outside door, and a pass through, all in a modestly sized kitchen).  In base cabinets, items stored towards the back are often forgotten, or at least can be frustrating to access; and, the pull-out pantries bring the storage out into the open for easier access.

The kitchen island (pictured below) functions as a work space, prep area, and central location to mix, pour, and sample a well deserved cocktail.  Plus, the storage underneath is perfect for larger cookware that usually clutters a standard sized lower cabinet.

Larry of Nova Woodworks made the butcher block top.  He has the machines (most notably, the dual head wide belt sander) to handle a larger, 36" wide top; and besides the basic dimensions, my only instructions to Larry were that the client wanted a maple butcher block with a cherry "rally" stripe.  She was thrilled with the top, especially with the matching cutting board that Larry made (for fun) with some of the off-cuts.  Butchen block counter tops are another one of those things that get better with age, and it is all the spills, stains, scratches, and scuffs that create a patina and improve the appearence.