The Uncomfortable Men’s Valet

Viewer Project - By Joe Laviolette from MA
Added on March 19, 2015

In an effort to expand my design abilities, I decided I needed to move completely out of my comfort zone. I generally stick to styles I like. This time I challenged myself to create something from a style I am not particularly fond of-mid century modern.

I borrowed the clean aesthetics and the splayed outboard legs, but added my own touches like the exposed drawer slide, splines, and mitered drawer front construction. This was an absolute nightmare of a glue up, but I like the end result. I also enjoy the walnut and ash combination and the black leather on the top complements it well

The drawer pull is inspired by a cufflink.

Finish is a custom mixed oil/varnish blend which I find to work well on light colored species and departs a lot less tone than Danish oil or the like. After it cured, I waxed it using an old “spit polish” technique to add a subtle sheen and amazing tactile feel.

In addition, most of the work was done with hand tools, another first for me. I am pleased with the end result and taking inspiration from something not necessarily appealing to me did really open my eyes to a lot of possibilities.


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