Wednesday, November 7, 2018

Stickley sideboard, part 5

When I put the Stickley sideboard aside last spring, the carcase was done and I only had the drawers left to make; with the arrival of fall, it was time to get back at it.  As I wrote in the last post, the drawers went well and it was time for finish.

I made this for my son and his wife and they prefer dark stains.  They're not my cup of tea but the original was dark so I didn't object.  Dark stains are tough because they show every imperfection and tend not to absorb evenly; at least that's my experience.  Pre-stain conditioner is recommended but I like the color differences that result from not using it, so I didn't.

Here's the result:

Building this piece only increased my respect for Stickley and Ellis.  There are many small details that I didn't appreciate until I realized how they contribute to both form and function.


  1. Very nice. I like Stickley style a lot. Out of curiosity, what did you use to finish it? I've been woodworking for about three years and have gotten very comfortable with shellac (letting the natural color of the wood come through). Staining is unfamiliar territory to me beyond deciding if I use blond, amber, or garnet shellac. Any info would be greatly appreciated.

    1. I applied the stain and wiped it off then wiped on three coats of Arm-R-Seal. I don't do that well brushing on finishes and do a lot better with wipe-on finishes.

  2. That is a beautiful piece of furniture.

  3. Andy.

    It really looks good. I must say you are a braver soul than I. After all that work putting stain on would have me quivering and in terminal melt down.

    Good on you, what a great gift.


  4. I like this furniture style a lot and yours looks like it could have been a pic on any my Stickley catalog pages.