Last fall my wife and I visited friends and relatives in New England and made a side trip to the Canterbury Shaker Village in Canterbury, New Hampshire. One of the main reasons for the visit was a furniture exhibit which included furniture from the Canterbury collection as well as pieces from other Shaker villages and a couple of pieces from private collections.
I have always liked the Shaker designs and have built a few smaller pieces in the Shaker style. One of the pieces on exhibit at Canterbury was a shaker sewing desk. For some reason it really caught my attention and I don’t even sew. While there are several version of the sewing desk I particularly liked the version on display at Canterbury.
While the original used maple for the frame and painted pine for all the remaining parts, I decided on western cherry for the frame and chestnut for the remainder. It made an interesting combination.
The following pictures will give you an idea of what was involved. It was, to say the least, a fun project and a challenging one.
– Dick Pettigrew