Here is my version of the Arts and Craft Bookcase from Fine Woodworking Magazine. It is from the #179- Sept/Oct 2005 issue by Gregory Paolini. Project plans are available through Fine Woodworking and other sources.
I took inspiration of technique, but however, made changes in design and overall size to this make my own work versus copying another’s and fit my space and needs. Like the plans, I chose to use loose tenon joinery or floating tenons that fit in mortises made with a router. Like the plans, the back is made from solid 4/4 resawn cherry boards and is shiplapped. This design feature is a great finished look for viewing the inside of the bookcase as well viewing it from the back. The end panels are also resawn solid 4/4 cherry and are bookmatched as in the plans. The shiplapped back panels and end panels float inside grooves in the leg posts, stretchers, and rails. Also this has two adjustable shelves, and adjustable levelers much like those in the plans from Fine Woodworking. Like Gregory from Fine Woodworking, I chose cherry in my version. The big changes I made were in overall height, width, and depth of the bookcase. Doing this changed most everything that’s in the plans. I changed the dimensions of the leg posts, width of the stretchers and rails. I arched the front upper stretcher. I changed the width and number of shiplapped back pieces. The number of adjustable shelf pin holes, the method of attaching the top and fixed bottom shelf, and the finish are also different than the plans.
I used a couple jigs, a bit guide collar, and an edge guide with 1/4” up-spiral bits in my routers to create the mortises for the loose tenons, grooves for shiplapped back and end panels in the leg posts, and adjustable shelf pin holes in the leg posts. I used my box joint blade set to make grooves in the stretchers and rails.
The finish is multiple steps. It begins with garnet shellac. Garnet brings out the red in cherry and helps even out color variation. I make my own using dewaxed shellac flakes. Second, I used walnut gel stain as a glaze. Instant age and added richness over the red undertones in the shellac. Then satin wipe on poly. I make my own 50/50 blend.
Measure "at least" twice and cut once