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Seminars...

2017   Schedule of Classes - New Pictures Added!

March 25-26: Line and Berry Techniques - Personalizing Your Work, with Steve Latta. Details to follow, but will include lettering and some basic embellishments hallmarking personaliztion of small boxes, chests, etc. See class later this year by request to build an 18th c small box to place your own personaliztion onto. Both days 9am-5pm. You may have a materials fee and will need to bring your own tools (which will be specified). $350.00


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April 29-30: Brewster Philadelphia Spice Chest, Part I, with Bess Naylor. Many Spice Chests were originally built in the Chester County, Pennsylvania area. This particular chest originated in a major Philadelphia workshop in the 1720's. Spice Boxes immigrated to the Colonies with English settlers, especially the Welsh, and historically retained the most interest in the Southeastern Pennsylvania area, particularly among Quaker families in the Chester County area. These "valuables" boxes were prominently displayed in wealthy homes to house items of value in the Colonial home, spices, coins, jewelry, papers, etc. Many were plain in appearance. Some were decorated, particularly with the owner's initials and/or a special commemorative date. A special few had highly embellished doors with line and berry inlay or elaborate inlay and marquetry. Interiors varied as well from rather simple drawer arrangements to complex designs and cleverly constructed hidden compartments and locking mechanisms. There is rich information in "Paint, Pattern & People: Furniture of Southeastern Pennsylvania 1725-1850", authored by Wendy Cooper and Lisa Minardi,Winterthur Museum, 2011. Also reference Lee Ellen Griffith's exceptional book, "The Pennsylvania Spice Box Book". This enchanting William and Mary Spice Chest/Valuables Chest recently sold at Freeman's Auction, from a private collection in Maryland. It was built in Philadelphia,circa 1720's with approximate dimensions of 20.1/2 high x 17" wide x 9" deep. Walnut. It is considered "rare" by many as it has a very early construction date and was made in Philadelphia. Riven oak drawer sides, wedged dovetails, Atlantic white cedar drawer bottoms, pintle hinges (door missing on sale object), very deep base molding, turned feet.Another striking example of American craftsmanship! And a privilege to reproduce our very own replica. We will build a door,you will have several options that we will discuss in class. I don't know about you, but I cannot seem to get enough of these beautiful, useful objects. Please refer to Chris Storb's "In Proportion to the Trouble" - very exciting and informative. This class is composed of three parts. 9am-5pm-ish. Students provide their own tools and materials (from a provided cut list). Cost is $350.00 per part. Photography by Freeman's Auction.


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May 20-21: Philadelphia Affleck Chest on Chest, Upper Chest, Part I, with Bess Naylor. Here is your chance to build your own copy of one of America's true Furniture Masterpieces!! Build the Affleck Philadelphia Chest on Chest. Morrison Heckscher, author of "American Furniture in The Metropolitan Museum of Art, II" , MMA, 1985, says, " On this piece, a supreme manifestation of Philadelphia Chippendale case furniture, the continuous cornice beneath the pediment, the veneered drawer fronts with beaded edges, and the neoclassic design of the brasses connote a date in the seventeen-seventies or later. " pg 226. There are several pieces that appear to be strongly related, with some variances in each. Heckscher continues, " The authorship of this group of exceptional case pieces has yet to be determined. Likely possibilities, however, are Thomas Affleck the cabinetmaker and James Reynolds, the carver." Albert Sack in "The New Fine Points of Furniture", Crown, 1993, says this Masterpiece Chippendale Scroll top Chest-on-Chest is "a magnificent creation ..... The narrow proportion offers a verticality rare in Philadelphia case pieces." Pg 119. I find William Macpherson Hornor, Jr.'s introduction to his chapter discussing Philadelphia Chippendale -Case Pieces, an excellent read, so very appropriate, "Luxury begins where utility ends" Hornor's Blue Book Philadelphia Furniture, Highland House, 1988. The three part chest is mahogany as the primary wood and secondary pine or red gum, poplar and white cedar. Approx dimensions are overall Ht ~98", width of lower case ~48" and a depth of ~ 24". Obviously, modifications can be proportionately altered to accommodate a modern house as needed or desired. The top is composed of a freize, cornice and scrolled pediment. The Basket of Flowers cartouche was addressed last year with Chris Storb from the Philadelphia Museum of Art. Other chests have different cartouche or Phoenix carvings. The other two sections are composed with typical Philadelphia cabinetmaking techniques, such as full dust boards, dovetailed joinery, moldings, fluted quarter columns and ogee bracket feet. The drawers can alternately be veneered or in the solid with cockbeaded edges or thumbnail profiled edges. It has surely been a privilege to study this piece up close to understand the details of construction. My gratitude to Chris and the Philadelphia Museum of Art in allowing this study. The original is owned by the PMA and was on display at Mount Pleasant, though not currently. This year is designed to have two construction based classes, using period techniques appropriate to Philadelphia to build the Upper case. Chris will teach a separate class on Carving the Scrolled Pediment. This is an exceptional opportunity to build one of the finest case pieces ever made in the height of American Philadelphia cabinetmaking! Part I, Upper Case $350.00 9am-5ish pm Cut list will be provided. Your tools required.


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June 10-11: Brewster Philadelphia Spice Chest, Part II, with Bess Naylor. Many Spice Chests were originally built in the Chester County, Pennsylvania area. This particular chest originated in a major Philadelphia workshop in the 1720's. Spice Boxes immigrated to the Colonies with English settlers, especially the Welsh, and historically retained the most interest in the Southeastern Pennsylvania area, particularly among Quaker families in the Chester County area. These "valuables" boxes were prominently displayed in wealthy homes to house items of value in the Colonial home, spices, coins, jewelry, papers, etc. Many were plain in appearance. Some were decorated, particularly with the owner's initials and/or a special commemorative date. A special few had highly embellished doors with line and berry inlay or elaborate inlay and marquetry. Interiors varied as well from rather simple drawer arrangements to complex designs and cleverly constructed hidden compartments and locking mechanisms. There is rich information in "Paint, Pattern & People: Furniture of Southeastern Pennsylvania 1725-1850", authored by Wendy Cooper and Lisa Minardi,Winterthur Museum, 2011. Also reference Lee Ellen Griffith's exceptional book, "The Pennsylvania Spice Box Book". This enchanting William and Mary Spice Chest/Valuables Chest recently sold at Freeman's Auction, from a private collection in Maryland. It was built in Philadelphia,circa 1720's with approximate dimensions of 20.1/2 high x 17" wide x 9" deep. Walnut. It is considered "rare" by many as it has a very early construction date and was made in Philadelphia. Riven oak drawer sides, wedged dovetails, Atlantic white cedar drawer bottoms, pintle hinges (door missing on sale object), very deep base molding, turned feet.Another striking example of American craftsmanship! And a privilege to reproduce our very own replica. We will build a door,you will have several options that we will discuss in class. I don't know about you, but I cannot seem to get enough of these beautiful, useful objects. Please refer to Chris Storb's "In Proportion to the Trouble" - very exciting and informative. This class is composed of three parts. 9am-5pm-ish. Students provide their own tools and materials (from a provided cut list). Cost is $350.00 per part. Photography by Freeman's Auction.


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June 24-25: Build Two Different Taunton Chests, originally made by Robert Crosman of Taunton Mass. Part I, with Bess Naylor. This beautiful Chest of Drawers was originally built by Robert Crosman of Taunton, Massachusetts in 1742, a drum maker. Many of these chests are built from white pine, rather simple in their joinery, though with some ingenious joinery not easily seen unless scrutinized closely. The sides continue all the way to the floor for support terminating in bootjack feet. This outstanding chest is owned and dispayed at Winterthur Museum. It measures about 24" high by 24" wide by 14" deep and has a lift-up lid with a covered till on the inside. It also has double bead molding and two working drawers.Please also read the description for the Blair Taunton Chest for more information on this interesting artisan fro Colonial Massachusetts. Also please be aware of some museums in New England that have original chests by Crosman, some of which are preparing for a 300 year tribute. www.oldcolonyhistorymuseum.org in Taunton, Mass. I am very pleased to finally offer these two outstanding examples of early New England painted furniture. We will not have time for any painting, but we will have discussions about what they originally did. I also have an extremely talented local painter who can definitely accurately execute these painted surfaces, if interested. 9am-5pm ish. Cost is $350.00. 9am -5ish pm. Tools required amd material supplied by participants but a cut list will be provided. Photographs are provided courtesy of Winterthur Museum. "Courtesy, Winterthur Museum, Chest of Drawers, 1742, Pine, White; Oak, Red;Chesnut; Paint Taunton, Massachusetts, Bequest of Henry Francis Du Pont, 1954.0510"

July 15-16: Basics of 18th century Joinery Techniques, with Bess Naylor. Designed with the beginner/novice in mind or with your kids!! This class will focus on learning the basic 18th century joinery techniques in the construction of a small box. Hand dovetails, mortises, tenons and some molding plane use. A requested class, this is a great oportunity to build a traditional box and affix your personalized embellishment as taught by Steve earlier this year. Some basic tools will be required and there will be a materials fee unless you bring your own material (cut list provided. 9am-5pm. $350.00.


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August 19-20: Affleck Chest on Chest, Upper Chest Part II, with Bess Naylor. Here is your chance to build your own copy of one of America's true Furniture Masterpieces!! Build the Affleck Philadelphia Chest on Chest. Morrison Heckscher, author of "American Furniture in The Metropolitan Museum of Art, II" , MMA, 1985, says, " On this piece, a supreme manifestation of Philadelphia Chippendale case furniture, the continuous cornice beneath the pediment, the veneered drawer fronts with beaded edges, and the neoclassic design of the brasses connote a date in the seventeen-seventies or later. " pg 226. There are several pieces that appear to be strongly related, with some variances in each. Heckscher continues, " The authorship of this group of exceptional case pieces has yet to be determined. Likely possibilities, however, are Thomas Affleck the cabinetmaker and James Reynolds, the carver." Albert Sack in "The New Fine Points of Furniture", Crown, 1993, says this Masterpiece Chippendale Scroll top Chest-on-Chest is "a magnificent creation? The narrow proportion offers a verticality rare in Philadelphia case pieces." Pg 119. I find William Macpherson Hornor, Jr.'s introduction to his chapter discussing Philadelphia Chippendale -Case Pieces, an excellent read, so very appropriate, "Luxury begins where utility ends" Hornor's Blue Book Philadelphia Furniture, Highland House, 1988. The three part chest is mahogany as the primary wood and secondary pine or red gum, poplar and white cedar. Approx dimensions are overall Ht ~98", width of lower case ~48" and a depth of ~ 24". Obviously, modifications can be proportionately altered to accommodate a modern house as needed or desired. The top is composed of a freize, cornice and scrolled pediment. The Basket of Flowers cartouche was addressed last year with Chris Storb from the Philadelphia Museum of Art. Other chests have different cartouche or Phoenix carvings. The other two sections are composed with typical Philadelphia cabinetmaking techniques, such as full dust boards, dovetailed joinery, moldings, fluted quarter columns and ogee bracket feet. The drawers can alternately be veneered or in the solid with cockbeaded edges or thumbnail profiled edges. It has surely been a privilege to study this piece up close to understand the details of construction. My gratitude to Chris and the Philadelphia Museum of Art in allowing this study. The original is owned by the PMA and was on display at Mount Pleasant, though not currently. This year is designed to have two construction based classes, using period techniques appropriate to Philadelphia to build the Upper case. Chris will teach a separate class on Carving the Scrolled Pediment. This is an exceptional opportunity to build one of the finest case pieces ever made in the height of American Philadelphia cabinetmaking! Part II, Upper Case $350.00 9am-5ish pm Cut list will be provided. Your tools required.


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September 9-10: Hammer Veneering Techniques, with Steve Latta. This class will focus on a time honored tradition of applying veener by the technique known as Hammer Veneering. More details will be forthcoming. Will probably have a small materials fee. Some tools required. $350.00. 9am-5pm.

October 7-8: Advanced Carving - Carving the Affleck Scrolled Pediment, with Chris Storb. Chris is the Dietrich American Foundation Project Conservator, working out of the PMA. He has been so very generous with his expertise regarding authentic 18th century furniture and its intracacies. Those of us lucky enough to study with him have learned so much information that is just not available elsewhere. What a privelge to study with him and what better project than the height of Philadelphia artistry. 9am-5pm ish. $450.00 Materials and tools you provide.


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October 28-29: Brewster Philadelphia William and Mary Spice Chest, Part III, with Bess Naylor. Many Spice Chests were originally built in the Chester County, Pennsylvania area. This particular chest originated in a major Philadelphia workshop in the 1720's. Spice Boxes immigrated to the Colonies with English settlers, especially the Welsh, and historically retained the most interest in the Southeastern Pennsylvania area, particularly among Quaker families in the Chester County area. These "valuables" boxes were prominently displayed in wealthy homes to house items of value in the Colonial home, spices, coins, jewelry, papers, etc. Many were plain in appearance. Some were decorated, particularly with the owner's initials and/or a special commemorative date. A special few had highly embellished doors with line and berry inlay or elaborate inlay and marquetry. Interiors varied as well from rather simple drawer arrangements to complex designs and cleverly constructed hidden compartments and locking mechanisms. There is rich information in "Paint, Pattern & People: Furniture of Southeastern Pennsylvania 1725-1850", authored by Wendy Cooper and Lisa Minardi,Winterthur Museum, 2011. Also reference Lee Ellen Griffith's exceptional book, "The Pennsylvania Spice Box Book". This enchanting William and Mary Spice Chest/Valuables Chest recently sold at Freeman's Auction, from a private collection in Maryland. It was built in Philadelphia,circa 1720's with approximate dimensions of 20.1/2 high x 17" wide x 9" deep. Walnut. It is considered "rare" by many as it has a very early construction date and was made in Philadelphia. Riven oak drawer sides, wedged dovetails, Atlantic white cedar drawer bottoms, pintle hinges (door missing on sale object), very deep base molding, turned feet.Another striking example of American craftsmanship! And a privilege to reproduce our very own replica. We will build a door,you will have several options that we will discuss in class. I don't know about you, but I cannot seem to get enough of these beautiful, useful objects. Please refer to Chris Storb's "In Proportion to the Trouble" - very exciting and informative. This class is composed of three parts. 9am-5pm-ish. Students provide their own tools and materials (from a provided cut list). Cost is $350.00 per part. Photography by Freeman's Auction.


Click to Enlarge

November 4-5: Build Two Different Taunton Chests, originally made by Robert Crosman of Taunton Mass. Part II, with Bess Naylor. The Blair Chest is magnificent! It is a William and Mary diminutive painted pine chest of drawers. It stands only 22.3/4" high by a width of 22.3/8" by a depth of 12.1/2". From the collection of Mrs. J. Insley Blair, it was auctioned at Christie's in 2006 for an extraordinary value, just under 3 million. Gerald W.R. Ward in "A Taunton Chest Redivivus" (Antiques and Fine Arts Magazine) says, "It was clearly a magnificent example of this type of early New England painted furniture: signed by the maker, inscribed with its place of manufacture, dated 729, and in excellent condition." Further, Ward says," In our perusal of the literature surrounding this group of about thirty or so pieces -thought to be the largest surviving body of furniture with painted decoration made by a single early American craftsman - we turned initially ? to the seminal article on the group published by Esther Stevens Fraser in Antiques, April, 1933?" entitled "The Tantalizing Chests of Taunton". Christie's Jan 2006 Auction Catalog of the Blair Sale (page 44-51) states, " This d iminutive chest-of-drawers is a masterful survival of painted decoration and the key piece of evidence linking the entire group of similarly embellished chests to Robert Crosman (1707-1799) of Taunton Mass. Painted in red, white and green (and a trace of blue), its delightful fa'ade depicts baby chicks amongst vines and flowers, the lively composition organized by a series of compass-drawn scrolls, which meander from one drawer to the next. From these scrolls stem a multitude of smaller curled branches with leaves, berries and floral motifs that cover almost every available surface. In contrast, the decoration on the case sides is comparatively restrained with each board centered by a full-grown bird in flight. It is one of twenty-two known chests with paintwork that appears to be by the same hand, yet is distinguished from the rest of the group by the quality and condition of its painted designs, its sophisticated form and its revelation of the maker's identity." They further state, " In several ways the Crosman chest is unique. Considering the group as a whole, it is the only example with painted sides, the only signed by its maker, the only of its form (a chest-of-drawers), and the only with turned rather than bootjack feet.." Lastly, they say, " .. .. several of the chests have been linked to their first owners. In all such cases, the chests were made for young women around the time of their marriage and it is very likely that .. the chests' decoration was an intentional and symbolic reference to the beginnings of a new family." I am very pleased to finally offer these two outstanding examples of early New England painted furniture. The construction is rather simplistic, though it has an ingenious approach to some joinery. We will not have time for any painting, but we will have discussions about what they originally did. I also have an extremely talented local painter who can definitely accurately execute these painted surfaces, if her services are requested. 9am-5pm ish. Cost is $350.00. 9am -5ish pm. Tools required amd materials supplied by participants but a cut list will be provided. Photographs are provided courtesy of Christie's Auction from the Property of Mrs. J. Insley Blair, New York, Jan 6, 2006.

December 2-3: Colorants and Shellac Techniques, with Bess Naylor. Learn the basics of how, when and where to use a variety of techniques and materials to apply color to new or existing surfaces. We will also explore the application and appropriate use of a variety of topcoats, with a special emphasis on shellac. Class will be directed to student's problem areas. Beginners encouraged. Olde Mill has lots of experience in helping solve finishing/coloring problems with many experience levels. 9am-5pm. $350.00.

Date to be Determined: Review class for the Gene Landon Candlestand Project of 2004, with Bess Naylor. I have had requests to offer assistance for past projects that are not completed. I am happy to assist as I have many of my own such projects and this adds incentive for a collective opportunity to do so. So, if there is interest, please contact me. We will need to coordinate dates. Steve, this is for you!!

Date to be Determined: Build a Windsor Stool, with Jim Rendi. More details to follow.

Seminar Registration, Please read carefully!

Seminar Policy:
Thank you for your interest in attending a woodworking seminar with us at Olde Mill. It should be an exciting and rewarding learning experience. The following is Olde Mill's Seminar Attendance Policy. In order to register for a class, you must pay a minimum deposit of $75.00 per person,per session. Full payment is due 4 weeks in advance of the class.There will be no exceptions. Your full payment will ensure that a space will be held for you in the class. Please comply with our policy or you may lose your spot in the class.

Single Session Seminars:
In the event that you cancel attendance to a single session seminar, you will be refunded ONLY if we are contacted in writing a minimum of four weeks prior to the course. This may be done by written US Mail or an email to Bess's email address that is confirmed back to you by email. If you do not provide us with proper notification, you will not be refunded your money. Our cancellation of a class will result in a complete refund. If you cancel attendence to a class for any reason, without following the above-stated policy, you are still expected to make full payment.

Multi-Session Seminars:
Due to the nature of on-going instruction with a more complex piece, we cannot fill a vacant bench space after a project has been started. If you cancel out of a class 60 days prior to the first session, then we will refund monies paid minus a $75.00 cancellation fee. If you cancel out of a class after the first session has been held, full payment is expected for all remaining classes of that project. Our cancellation of a class will result in a complete refund.

Strict adherence to this policy will be enforced for the mutual benefit of all involved. If you have any questions about this policy, please do not hesitate to call us. We greatly appreciate your cooperation.

Email seminar questions to Bess: sales@oldemill.com












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