Walnut Chest with Cedar Lining

Unlike the Cherry and Bird’s Eye Maple Chest, this one was just finished.
The design was started in early 2022 and it was delivered this month (Oct 2023). The challenge for the design was the size was limited to the available space. I chose a frame and panel design and set the panel thickness at ½ inch.
I had a few boards of rough cut walnut that was thick enough to re-saw and make book matched panels for the front, back, ends and top.

The board for the back ended up having some damage and I had to add a filler board. I used cauls to keep the pieces aligned.

A few pieces had some voids that showed up after the re-saw. I filled them with some blackened epoxy.

After the joinery was cut into the frames and panels, everything was pre-finished.

Then the front, back and ends were glued up as separate assemblies.

After a bottom was cut from a sheet of ½ inch plywood the entire case was glued up.

Once the case was done I prepared some ¼ inch aromatic cedar. I installed the floor planks first. A bit of glue was used on each end. The bottle jack held the planks in place.

Then the sides were done.

The inside corners were trimmed with cedar.

There are small arm rests on each end. The inside faces have a walnut piece.

Then the tops are added.

I notched the back rail of the lid for the hinges. I should have done this before pre-finishing.

The lid is a full ¾ inch thick and has a center stile.

I attached the hinges to the lid and then positioned the lid so I could locate the hinges to the case.

My son and DIL were happy to get this after a long wait.

Here are some closer views:

Left Arm Rest

Right Side

Left Side

Right Arm Rest

Left side of Lid

Right side of Lid



Great chest! And thank you for the detailed build notes. 

Ryan/// ~sigh~ I blew up another bowl. Moke told me "I made the inside bigger than the outside".

Nice job Steve, I'm sure they will love it.

.................. John D....................

Fine work as always Steve!

Efforts to book match the walnut were well executed (some concern about the creepy face on the side 🤔) and the lining is about as "full coverage" as possible. 

A+ 👍
Love the Walnut,,used it very well,  Lovely chest.  


That’s a real beauty, Steve! 
What a beautiful piece. Love the walnut. 
beautiful chest steve. 

working with my hands is a joy,it gives me a sense of fulfillment,somthing so many seek and so few find.-SAM MALOOF.

Steve that is over the top beautiful.....love the book matching!  great job, I'm sure the recipient will be thrilled.  


Amazing work Steve. Looks beautiful.

Andy -- Old Chinese proverb say: If you think something can't be done, don't interrupt man who is doing it.

Nice work Steve. Book matching is perfect. Got me nervous for a minute when I saw that Jack in there. Thought something might of bowed or twisted on you.
Beautiful creation, it can be seen a lot of thought went into this - and it well executed. I really like all the attention to grain orientation, the book matching, etc. Two thumbs up.👍👍
Thanks all for the comments. That right end panel was a surprise after resawing - the outer faces were solid. The consensus here is that it looks like and owl.
Great looking chest and progress photos, Steve. What product did you use for finish?
Thanks Ross, I used General Finishes poly --- semi-gloss
That's an excellent looking chest Steve, and an interesting writ-up.

Excellent work!


Steve - looks amazing.  As I viewed it initially, I was confused by the hinges...until I noted the frame and panel - your match made it so seamless I didn't see where the top extended!  So nicely done.
Very nice, Steve! And glad to hear it took a while. My sweetie sometimes bemoans my long build times on complicated projects. Good to see I’m not the only one who sometimes takes a while.

May you have the day you deserve!

Thanks again for the comments

Barb - I'm using the hinges in a unique way. Hopefully they work out. Time will tell.
Dave - As far as my big projects go, this was fairly quick. It only took me 26 months!