Since that time, I coated the piece with several coats of tinted shellac to darken the artwork and to give a dirty, grungy brown-yellow tone to the whole composition. I also did the final install of all the hardware.
The layout of the vinework is influenced heavily by the original, but I wanted to add some of my own patterns in. So I rounded the hearts more (they were quite flat in the 1729 piece) and I added both my and my wife's initials to the piece on the first full length drawer.
I also cut back on the number of birds. The original had at least three that I could make out under the gunk, but I thought that was a bit too busy. So I just went with the most prominent one painted on the top two drawers and the divider.
|Gratuitous end grain shot for your joinery fans out there.|
A number of people who saw my piece suggested that I make the feet more closely resemble the original. But, having studied a number of similar chests, I've decided that mine are more than adequate since this isn't an exact copy (I did change the painting after all). I have left them unglued, so that I can redo them should the fancy strike me. Currently, it is sitting in my bedroom, on top of my main dresser, holding my socks, and the turnings don't bother me at all.
I'm currently finishing another version of the same basic form. It is the same layout and size, but with bracket feet. I would consider it a transitional William and Mary to Queen Anne form. This one is also in pine, but I'm planning to try my hand at grain painting thanks to Stephen Shepherd's willingness to share his knowledge...