The two small drawers are made entirely of mahogany and constructed in keeping with period practices. I glued the drawer stops in place, cleaned the shelves up, polished them and attached the Dutch drop handles to the drawers.
The proportions of the ‘Chinese fence’ shelves I have seen have varied considerably, but from the outset, I wanted to copy precisely Chippendale’s dimensions as notated in the Director, Plate 112. When preparing the components for these shelves, my initial impression – and one that perturbed me during the construction – was that the shelves would be disproportionate and maladroit (the proportions and perspective of some of Chippendale’s drawings are notoriously cockeyed). However, now that the shelves are completed and suspended on a wall, I am perfectly content with them.
An unexpected bounty this morning was when the curtains were drawn back and, for the first time, the daylight passing through the shelves described fascinating geometric shadows across the walls.