Classes at Marc Adams School of Woodworking

Making a Masterpiece: A Philadelphia Low Boy Part I with Alf Sharp

Dates: 5/27 - 5/31
Tool List: Click here for tool list

Cost: $1650
Deposit: $400

Masters Fellowship

Lowboys and highboys in the Chippendale style from Philadelphia are some of the most admired and celebrated pieces of furniture ever made in America. A well-carved original can bring many hundreds of thousands of dollars on the antiques market. Yet you can create a worthy replica of one of these icons of American design after two weeks of instruction here at MASW--and some sweat equity at home. The emphasis in this class will be to learn and hone those skills needed to create the finest examples of furniture from the American Colonial period. Students will fashion the various pieces necessary to craft a Philadelphia-style lowboy. Plenty of work will be left for the student to complete the project at home.

This is an apprenticeship class which will be conducted in two one-week sessions separated by fourteen weeks, during which the students will be able to take their project home and continue to work toward completion. The first week will concentrate on the layout, joinery, and construction of the lowboy. The second class will concentrate on the ornamental carving that completes the project. Join us in this great class. Upon completion of this project, you will have a heirloom of the grandest kind that will declare your skill for generations. Students should definitely have a basic working knowledge of hand and machine woodworking skills.

Key Points:

Subjects covered in PART I

When to use either carcass dovetails or mortise and tenons
How to fashion joints for a flawless fit
How to allow for expansion and contraction with solid wood
How to construct and fit proper drawer blades and dust panels
Cutting half-blind dovetails in lip-over drawers
Fashioning fluted quarter columns and double-lobed corners
How to lay out and saw cabriole legs
Initial carving of the ball and claw feet

Subjects covered in PART II

Finish carving the ball and claw feet
Carving acanthus on the knees and applied shells
Setting back and carving the acanthus scrolling on the apron
Carving the inset shell and applied acanthus scrolls on the middle drawer
Installing the hardware and finishing

There is a $45 annual registration fee that will be added to your the total amount of the class if this is the first class you are registering for this season.

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Public Registration begins December 1, 2014. Please check back then to register online.

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