Published by The Taunton Press, Connecticut, USA.
As reviewed in The Australian Woodworker Issue 159
The blanket box was once an essential piece of furniture in the well appointed house. Perhaps it became less favoured when bedrooms shrank in size as living areas grew larger. Yet the modern bedroom is as much in need of one as any in the past.
The blanket box stores warm bed coverings during the summer months, but just as importantly, it keeps them close, ready for immediate use, even in the middle of the night if there is a sudden change in the temperature.
As the 30 examples provided in this book show, the blanket box can also be an extremely attractive addition to the bedroom decor. In addition, they demonstrate the extraordinary variations in design that can be achieved when the same task is given to a number of talented furniture makers.
The introduction contains concise comments on topics that are particularly important in large box construction such as cutting mortises and tenons, making breadboard ends, dovetails of various kinds and wood movement.
The rest of the book is devoted to the plans. Similar presentations are used for each of these - a photo of the finished project, with overall dimensions, materials and hardware used and the kind of finish applied, plus simplified drawings and other details where appropriate.
Brian Sargent's contribution is the Waterfall Chest which has four curved pillars from which spring stainless steel rods to support a box with subtly curved sides and top.
Austen Matheson presents a Bermudan Chest based on the portable storage chests made in the unique style devised by the craftsmen of Bermuda during the 17th century.
Michael Cullen uses the mahogany carcase of his Red Leaf Chest as a canvas to capture light relief carvings that were subsequently painted.
John McAlevey moves in the opposite direction. His Plain and Simple Chest is graceful and stylish, yet embellished by no more than the outer curves of its four protruding legs.
Not all of the chests are simple boxes. A Chest for Work by Terry Moore, for example, is actually a low cupboard with two doors on the front, one false and hiding three drawers, their faces on the end of the chest.
There are also oddities such as Peter Pierobon's Little House. It has a peaked roof and gable ends, its entire surface deeply textured in swirls that give a strong suggestion of movement.
There is even a Chest in the Round. Made by Gregory Smith, the cylindrical barrel design was originally created for a jewellery box.
If you are planning to make a Blanket Box, this book would seem a good place to start. The many inspiring designs and the details given for each of them, should provide sufficient information to allow you to put together your own unique project.
About the author: Scott Gibson is a former editor of Fine Woodworking magazine. He writes for many publications, including Fine Homebuilding. He is the author of The Workshop and co-author of Toward a Zero Energy Home. Peter Turner designs and builds furniture at his home in South Portland, Maine.
in the Round
Arts and Crafts
of Oak Chests