Coming Together

There are usually several milestones in a project that are moments of truth. I recently reached one of those moments. It was time to do a complete dry fitting of the frame assembly. I was anxious about all of the fits but excited to see if the form was what I was hoping for  Without going on and on about how to put tab A into Slot A……., or was that into slot B?,  I carefully assembled all of the pieces and pulled it together using some clamps. Most of it went together quite easily as I had previously checked each individual fit. I made a few notes on areas that I would need to re-visit to fine tune and then stepped back to soak it in.


First I looked at it from the front, then one side, and then over to the other (as much as I could in my  crowded shop). Yes, all of the work in the design stage paid off; I like it. I think it is okay to be pleased with your work. I tend to be a perfectionist and it is very easy for me to start being critical that this joint is not quite tight enough or I wish that I had done this a bit different. And it kills the joy of the moment. But I need to remember that I am not Garret Hack, Glen Huey or Christian Becksvoort who have made hundreds of pieces of beautiful furniture and are highly skilled through lots of hard work and practice. This is my first real piece of furniture. So….so far, so good.  Do you allow yourself to take pleasure in your work as it progresses?  Now on to the panels.


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  1. I’ve only been woodworking for a little over 3 years now, purely as a hobby, but on every first successful dry-fit I step back, sit down, and allow myself the excitement of accomplishment. It’s a good moment to soak in. I’ve really enjoyed watching your progress on this hope chest. I’m about to start something very similar for my wife. Thank you for sharing your experience on this project.


  2. Dave, as a serious hobbyist, I aim high, but accept most outcomes as a chance to learn and improve. At times it helps to consider everything I create as a prototype.
    BTW, I love my Blue Spruce mallet. Keep up the good work(s).


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