Making a Yew Caddy – Part Two

The reproduction arsedine – procured from Optimum Brasses in Devon – is copied directly from eighteenth-century examples and cast in period-correct brass alloy.

The paper lining necessitated the underside of the lid to be unobstructed, so I shortened the pommel threads significantly and recessed the pommel nuts into the lid. The nuts were slotted so they could be tightened with a forked screwdriver once within the recesses.

I tidied up the brasses; filing off casting flashes and smoothing away grinding marks before buffing and colouring them.

The fettled and polished arsedine.

After polishing the exterior of the caddy, I attached the handle to the lid and plugged the nut recesses.

Pommel nuts recessed into lid.

The lid was attached to the box with a pair of small brass stop-hinges and the escutcheon was pinned to the front of the caddy.

The caddy, lightly aged.

I made a couple of sheets of combed marbled paper – a popular pattern during the eighteenth-century – and lined the caddy with it using traditional paste made from flour and water.

The stop hinges hold the lid open.

The marbled interior.


About Jack Plane

Formerly from the UK, Jack is a retired antiques dealer and self-taught woodworker, now living in Australia.
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5 Responses to Making a Yew Caddy – Part Two

  1. John Kissel says:

    Wow, another beautiful piece! Thanks for posting your various endevours. It’s really very inspiring (although it’s a little discouraging that you seem to be finishing these pieces up before I can even concieve of my next project!). The marble paper is a nice touch. I find your use of bright colors, both here an on the Yew stool to be very refreshing. Very dynamic.

    Were stop type hinges common to the period?

    Thank you again for these fascinating posts.


  2. Shannon says:

    Great post. I have just started a caddy of my own in a more high style with a taller moulded lid so this post comes at a good time. I like the dye detail on the inside of the lid and base, do you find this a lot on period pieces? I have been wanting to get my hands on an antique to examine some of the details for a while as these little caddies seem to be full of great details. I’m curious how you construct the top. Is the top panel just grooved into the top sides then banded with the quarter round moulding?


    • Jack Plane says:

      During the eighteenth-century, marbled paper was commonly applied to the interiors of the sliding shelves of clothes presses, small boxes, writing slopes, desks and of course, the end papers of books.

      The top and base of the basic box were nailed onto the shell formed by the front, back and sides. A further 1/4″ thick piece of pine was glued onto the top of the box and 1/4″ yew strips were mitred and glued around that. The whole was then veneered and the 1/4″ quadrant moulding stuck around the top edges. Finally, the feet were moulded, mitred and glued in place.



  3. Pingback: Inside ‘er Information | Pegs and 'Tails

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