Hudson Valley Chest of Drawers
Tasteful moldings and turned feet add quiet style to a sturdy dovetailed case
Synopsis: This Dutch-colonial style chest is modeled after one made by Val-Kill Industries, the furniture manufacturing program set up by Eleanor Roosevelt and friends in 1926 to create jobs and revive craftsmanship. The design is simple, the joinery straightforward, the moldings elegant but not overly complex. Sliding dovetails join the top and the drawer dividers to the case. Half-blind dovetails join the carcase sides to the bottom. The bun feet are turned, and the moldings are cut using a combination of power and hand tools.
A couple of summers ago while visiting Hyde Park, Franklin and Eleanor Roosevelt’s estate along the Hudson River north of New York City, I toured Eleanor’s getaway cottage two miles from the main house. In one of the bedrooms I came across a simple, handsome, and well-proportioned chest of drawers and instantly decided I’d like to make one for myself.
Like most of…