Wooden Thumbs

We Customize to Your Needs

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We're not a mega-"one size fits all" shop.  Our focus is to make quality custom drawers and meet your specific needs.  If you need a finger pull, a notch cut or a hole drilled, we do that kind of thing upon request.  The focus is not for you to buy what we sell, it's for us to build and provide what you want.  Sometimes you may need a very high end drawer made from high end material.  Other times cost plays a higher priority.  We build it the way you need it.  We do a lot of very simple standard drawers; but we do a fair amount of custom work too.  See some examples below.

 


details of cherry drawer showing finger scoop

Stack of drawers: cherry front with baltic birch sides.Cherry drawer, details of dovetail joints contrasting cherry against birch.

Details of cherry drawer corner showing birch insides.Details of cherry drawers showing closeup of finger scoop.

A Cherry Hybrid:

These drawers were designed as roll-outs behind a set of cherry doors.  These drawers were for a do-it-yourself customer in Kansas.  They needed to match the rich classy quality cherry look and feel of the rest of the piece of furniture, but cost was an issue.  So rather than incur the cost of a full cherry drawer, we made a hybrid drawer.  The fronts are a warm 1/2" cherry, while the sides are a 12mm baltic birch ply.  The baltic birch ply cost a fraction of select milled cherry.  The fronts were cut with a sculpted top for a finger pull-out, and were sanded and lacquered.  The sides were dovetailed.  The mixture of the cherry and birch made an attractive contrast.  The birch ply makes for a very strong functional, and attractive drawer. 

 


Oak and beech drawer, showing dry fit.

Antique oak and beech drawer, showing details of sculpted front profile.

 

 

Antique oak and beech drawer, showing top profile and dovetail joints.  

Antique oak and beech drawer, comparing it to the original style.

 

An Antique Replacement:

A work in progress, this drawer was a very special order.  The original was part of an antique dresser which had very sentimental value to its owner.  The original drawer was destroyed, and this new one is being made to match one of the others.  The sides were red oak milled to 7/16" thickness.  The drawer sides are dovetailed.  The front has a sculpted profile and is made of beech to match the original design.  Here the drawer is being dry fitted before the top and bottom details are applied to the drawer front.  The shop commissioning this drawer was in Oregon, and asked that it be delivered unassembled and unfinished so that they could stain it to match other work they were doing. 

 


Beech drawer, showcasing the dovetailed sides.

Beech drawer, showing it from the front.Beech drawer, showing a stack with finger scoops.

Beech drawer, showing details of the dovetail joints.

Tall beech drawer showing dovetailed joints.

Solid Beech 5/8":

This is a solid 5/8" beech drawer, with a sculpted roll-out front, and dovetailed sides.  Beech is a great wood for drawers.  It has a rich honey color, with a very straight grain that looks something like a cross between mahogany and oak.  It makes an attractive dovetail joint.  It is a straight grained wood and is very stable.  It has few knots which gives it great yield.  It's reasonably hard, yet tools well and cuts cleanly.  And ... it is fairly inexpensive compared to other hardwoods.


Three  baltic birch ply drawers showing a low cut front.

 

 

Three baltic beech drawers showing the side view of low cut sides.

Low Front Roll-out:

These drawers were ordered from a customer in Idaho.  This order was filled in the very early days of our shop.  They simply shows that there is more than one way to make a drawer front, and we can do that.  These are drawers made from 12mm Baltic Birch ply.  Again the sides are dovetailed, but the fronts have a very low front cut so that even though these are roll-out drawers, you can see much of the contents without pulling the drawer out.

 


Soft maple drawers highlighting burl grain pattern.

Drawers from soft maple, showing inside.

  Details of dovetail joints on soft maple drawers.
  Grain patterns in soft maple drawer.  
Lobster grain pattern in soft maple drawer.   Grain patterns in a stack of soft maple drawers.
Soft Figured Maple Grain:

I've always thought it is a wonderful analogy that people are like wood.  When wood grows in an unhindered environment, it can grow straight and true, but sometimes kind of boring.  If you want to see some interesting wood, look at where the tree  has struggled, where it has survived hard times, near where it's knots are, where it has had to grow in spite of difficult challenges.  People are similar, where they have struggled is where they have developed interesting character.  But I digress.  This is a set of dovetailed drawers made from soft figured maple a.k.a. big leaf maple.  They were made as part of a custom order for a cabinet maker doing a custom kitchen in a house on the shore of Lake Washington near Juanita Washington.  Big leaf maple is not as hard as hard rock maple, but it can certainly have interesting grain.  Sometimes with special orders we can obtain wood with a spectacular grain, or we can take wood that a customer or cabinet shop provides, and make beautiful drawers from it..  These were all roll-out drawers.  The cabinet doors were made from a single piece of huge wood so that all of the cabinet doors from side to side and top to bottom had matching grain the entire length of the kitchen.  It was beautiful.

 


Red oak drawer, showing long finger scoop.

Red oak drawers showing the long finger scoop and notches on back.

  Stack of red oak drawers, showcasing scoop and dovetail joints.
  Stack of red oak drawers.  
Showing the front inside of the drawers of red oak.   Showing the inside back of the oak drawers.
Red Oak Drawer with 1/2" Bottoms:

These are a set of dovetailed drawers made from red oak for a furniture maker located in California.  He needed a longer finger scoop, and special notches located in the back in an unusual location.  More and more we get requests for notching drawers for bottom mount hardware -- not a problem.  These drawers were big, and needed 1/2" bottoms (made from baltic birch ply).  These drawers are just about ready for the sanding room.

 


Red oak Inkle loom on custom dovetailed box.

  Prototype of the Lapidary box.

 

   
  Walnut Inkle loom with open lid on custom dovetailed box.     Maple Inkle loom on custom dovetailed box.  
      Another view of the lapidary box.   Walnut Inkle loom detached from itls dovetailed box.
And ... it's Not Just About Drawers You Know:

We've done a number of projects over the years.  Above shows a few Inkle Looms and lapidary boxes.  The Inkle loom breaks down and fits inside their own dovetailed boxes with sliding lids  The lapidary boxes are prototypes for a store that sells gyms and fossils.  We've also made large puzzle tables with inserted drawers for jigsaw puzzles, and a billiard ball jenny (it cleans and polishes billiard balls). The point is that there are a lot of creative ideas out there.  If you have one, run it past us, maybe we can help.

 


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