Lincoln Table & Newport Diplomatic Hutch in a Contemporary Classic Setting

January 22nd, 2015

Lincoln-Table-Newport-hutch copy


This stunning picture was submitted to us by Diane Saavedra-Bryan from Concord, NC who ordered the pictured table and hutch from us.   This set is a great example of our Amish furniture looking perfectly stunning in a classic-contemporary styled home.


The table she ordered is the Lincoln dining table in brown maple with the Onyx stain, featuring two leaves with skirts, standard gear slide, beveled edge, and a top size of 42 x 72″.  The table was built to match the Newport Diplomatic hutch, which features a back mirror, custom hardware, and LED touch lighting, and is shown in the two door 40″ wide configuration.

What Are Dining Table Extension Leaves?

January 22nd, 2015

table_extension-leafMost people know what dining table leaves are, but this somewhat technical description up will serve as a great review or fill in any knowledge gaps that you might have about how they work.


Dining table leaves are slabs of wood typically 12″ wide with a length, thickness, wood type, and finish color that matches the top of the table they are designed to fit with. Leaves are designed to match the table top so when they are inserted in between the two halves of the table, the leaves and the table top blend together.


The sole purpose of dining table leaves are to allow the table to extend to greater lengths, thus allowing more seating capacity. Often times multiple leaves are purchased at the time the table was purchased to get a perfect stain match. It is not uncommon, however, to additional leaves to be purchased later by having a stain match done by the finisher.


When purchased with a new table, the edge profile of the leaves will be built to match the rest of the table top edge profile, so if you are purchasing the table leaves after the initial purchase, be sure to send the builder the edge profile of your current table to they will match by etching onto a piece of pater or drawing a precise sketch.


Other factors to consider when purchasing extension leaves is adding leaf skirts, and adding a leaf storage option to your table if it’s available on the table model you are looking at purchasing.  Leaf skirts make the table more attractive when the leaves are in the table, and storage adds convenience by making easier to store the leaves


There are other types of leaves as well, which are not to be confused with extension leaves covered in this discussion. The butterfly leaf, and the drop leaf also serve to extend the length of the table to create greater seating capacity, but function differently and are an aesthetic variant of extension leaves.

The Amish and Cigarettes

January 22nd, 2015

You wouldn’t expect the Amish to smoke cigarettes, and it’s true that not many do. The habit is often considered too expensive for Amish frugality. However, don’t be alarmed if you do see an Amish person smoking. Every community has different rules. Get more details on this surprising topic at

How Dovetail Joint Strength Works

January 21st, 2015

Woodworking never stops teaching you things. Today, let’s talk about physics with Steve Schafer. Steve goes over the science of finding out how weak a dovetail joint can possibly be (I see humor here) if the pins are very thin. The lengthy article has illustrations and explains tension between pins and tails.

Skelton Dovetail Saw Gallery and Unboxing

January 21st, 2015

At Popular Woodworking, Graham Hayden is trying out and showing off a Skelton dovetail saw. Besides being among the most beautiful handsaws in the world, the Skelton saw is custom handcrafted in England. Shane Skelton’s work is superb and Graham goes over every pro and con of the saw with respect.
Click on the beauty of tools.

Safety for Tiny House Architecture

January 20th, 2015

Tiny houses are so ingenious, so beautiful, and so new. Many of us get inspired by tiny house tours with their unusual arrangements and efficient designs. Lloyd Alter would like to remind us to balance that inspiration with safe, sober thought. Click on TreeHugger for an article on fire safety and other safety considerations tiny house builders should keep in mind.
Remember, it’s for living in.

Our Furniture Finishing Process: The Final Clear Coats

January 15th, 2015

The third and final part of our video series on our finishing process has arrived. So far, we have visited the Amish staining shop in Wakarusa, Indiana, where workers disassemble and prepare furniture. In Part 2, we watched the first spray and viewed a few safety devices in the shop. Finally, we are ready to show the final clear coats.
Notice how I said, “clear coats,” not “clear coat.” Amish shop workers in safety masks take each freshly stained piece and apply a clear sealing coat to protect both the wood and the stain from things like moisture. They gently sand this coat to make it smooth, then blast off the dust with compressed air to get ready for the final coat. The final clear coat adds more protection and also gives the hardwood furniture a beautiful sheen. After these pieces dry, workers reassemble them into perfectly stained furniture. Finally, we ship them to eager customers.

Thank you for watching our video series on our three-day finishing process. If you have any questions, feel free to connect in the comments, on social media, or by calling or emailing us.

This Tool Is Art: Jim Leamy Plow Plane

January 13th, 2015

Those of you who read Popular Woodworking, visit Christopher Schwartz’s blog for a close-up on a Jim Leamy plow plane that the magazine snuck into a cover photo of a hall cupboard. Leamy’s tools are art; some are brilliant to use, others to touch and move the parts on.
Get the photos.

Amish Bakery Photo Tour

January 9th, 2015

Kevin Williams has a treat for you. The Amish Cook columnist has visited Countrylane Bakery and Gifts of Berne, Indiana. Of course, he took pictures of Amish baked goods. Ooh, is that confectioner’s frosting on those peach fry pies? Photos, as well as directions to visit for yourself, are at
Click to read about pie.

How Kids Learn, How Humans Learn, How to Learn Woodworking

January 9th, 2015

By Tobin Dimmitt
Doug Stowe teaches woodworking to primary schoolers. This means he doesn’t only discuss woodworking, but how he can apply the ways that children learn to creating woodworking projects.
He gives you a sample of B. B. Hoffman’s “The Sloyd System of Woodworking” which was published in 1892 but is still inspiring today. Be careful when you read on, because Doug has kids work with tools and Hoffman did too. Hoffman discusses whether various crafts or tools are going to teach kids anything.
Interestingly, Hoffman concludes that the knife is a more useful teaching tool than the lathe. It is simpler than other tools, and kids have seen one before arriving at school. The principle is to start people with a concept they know, and then to use that familiar concept to introduce new ideas.
Stowe concludes with a justification for schools to teach kids how to use knives for woodworking rather than letting them get hurt figuring knives out on the street.
On a side note, Doug includes photos of a geometric project he’s working on.
Get the source.