A photo essay on Arts & Crafts furniture legs:
All projects in this leg photo essay are
built with White Oak.
When quarter-sawn, attractive rays can be
revealed...
but they only occur on two radial faces.
The other two plainsawn faces have no rays.

Many techniques have been used in furniture
history to work around this reality of trees.
The goal is always the same...
to show the best looking grain on furniture.

This plant stand, in the style of Charles
Limbert, has solid oak one-pc legs.

The tiger stripes are medullary rays through
which the tree moved sap.
the style of Gustav
Stickley.

The rift-sawn legs of
the little table have very
straight grain, which is
another approach to
making attractive legs.

There are no ugly
V-patterns, known as
cathedrals, on these one
piece legs.
Viewing adjacent leg
sides reveals the straight
and similar grain.

All four sides match,
even though these are
just one-piece legs.

The tradeoff is fewer
pretty rays.

But certainly a decent
compromise.
The tabouret legs
shown up close.

There are some rays
showing...
but fewer than might
be seen on
quarter-sawn
lumber.
I designed this umbrella
stand to rhyme with the
Arts & Crafts style.

This is the bottom view
of the two-piece legs.

The mitered corner
serves to conceal the
tricky corner joint
where they meet.
This view of the partially assembled
umbrella stand offers a glimpse of the
mitered leg.

It is challenging to build clean joints
without unsightly gaps.
No putty or filler was used.

The pair of 'legs' on each face of the stand
were taken from a single cleaved board
to ensure a pleasing grain match.

Actually the same applies to each pair of
rails as well. The uppers were cut from the
lower rails, so the grain matches.

The wide slats were booksawn from a
thicker board, also to match the grain.
One piece legs
Two piece legs
Page 1 of 3: one and two piece furniture legs
Click here to see legs page Two