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Shop Drawings for Greene & Greene Furniture: 23 American Arts and Crafts Masterpieces Paperback – February 1, 2007

4.3 out of 5 stars 30 customer reviews

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Frequently Bought Together

  • Shop Drawings for Greene & Greene Furniture: 23 American Arts and Crafts Masterpieces
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  • In the Greene & Greene Style: Projects and Details for the Woodworker
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  • Greene & Greene: Design Elements for the Workshop
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Editorial Reviews

From the Back Cover

Projects include... Blacker Medicine Cabinet Blacker Hall Seat Blacker Night Table Bolton Chair Bolton Hall Table Bolton Plant Stand Bush Curio Cabinet Freeman Ford Serving Table Gamble Bed Gamble Bookcase Gamble Chiffonier Gamble Entry Table Gamble Kitchen Cabinets Gamble Kitchen Table Gamble Morror Charles Greene Sideboard Robvinson Dining Table Robinson Side and Arm Chair Thorsen Serving Table Thorsen Plant Stand Tichenor Bedroom Chest Townsend Occasional Tables Greene & Greene furniture, widely recognized as the finest expression of the American Arts & Crafts movement, is presented here for the first time as working shop drawings. Featuring accurate front, side, and top views, with comprehensive section and detail views, these drawings offer today's woodworkers a long-awaited opportunity to reproduce these furniture masterpieces, which have often been photographed but never before presented in such detail. Introductory chapters explain who were the Greene brothers and how they created their extraordinary furniture and houses in Southern California at the turn of the last century. Technical chapters cover suitable woods and finishes and provide solid information on how to make such characteristic Greene & Greene details as proud plugs and splines, breadboard ends, and cloud lifts. Robert W. Lang is senior editor at Popular Woodwroking magazine and the author of Bob Lan's The Complete Kitchen Cabinetmaker, MORE Shop Drawings for Craftsman Furniture, Shop Drawings for Craftsman Furniture, Shop Drawings for Craftsman Inlays and Hardware, and Shop Drawings for Craftsman Interiors. He lives in Cincinnati, Ohio.

About the Author

Robert W Lang is a cabinetmaker, draftsman and author of several woodworking books. He is senior editor of 'Popular Woodworking' and contributor to 'Fine Woodworking'. He lives in Heath, Ohio.
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 159 pages
  • Publisher: Fox Chapel Publishing (February 1, 2007)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1892836297
  • ISBN-13: 978-1892836298
  • Product Dimensions: 8.5 x 0.5 x 10.8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.8 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (30 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #315,307 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
Having purchased two other books of this nature by Mr. Lang, I placed myself on the waiting list at Amazon and waited months the get the book in my hands. I did not hesitate to break it out of the packaging and dove right into it. The first forty-five pages were dedicated to the history and other background information necessary to get a good understanding of the Greenes' design concepts and the practical methods used by the Hall brothers to construct the pieces. I was very disappointed with the scant number of details that one might expect from such a technical manual. There are a few photographs that show some of the processes (most of us know how to use a shoulder plane) but what was lacking were drawings to reinforce or to make clear some of the principles Lang was trying to describe. The book read like a series of essays rather than a substantive, technical manual with supporting details.

The actual measured drawings are just that as they lack certain pertinent construction details. I am a fairly skilled woodworker, having started the craft at the age of fourteen and have continued until today, even after a successful career in architecture; and what I have concluded is that this book was hurriedly put together to meet some preset deadline. It is my opinion that if more time and thought was given by the author to the details it would have resulted in a much better book.

So I am sorely disappointed with the contents and the lack of detailing and would not recommend this book to anyone but very experienced woodworkers. Mr. Lang has missed the mark this time and what a pity.
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This book is divided into two sections. The first describes several woodworking techniques that are useful in making this furniture. This material is adequate and infomative. However, if you are planning to make G&G furniture, you should also buy Darrell Peart's book regarding techniques for Greene and Greene furntiure. Mr. Peart's discussion is more extensive.

The second section is the measured drawings. I have mixed feelings about this section. Mr. Lang tells us that he really wants the reader to think hard about the furniture before beginning construction. Therefore, he provides the minimum necessary infomation.

I disagree. I am purchasing this book because I want my life to be easy. I've built many pieces of furniture from drawings and it would be so very nice to have dimensions that are repeated instead of flipping pages.

Mr. Lang does this because he learned mechanical drafting, where each dimension is provided only once. In mechanical drafting this is important because of tolerance stacking. But tolerance stacking is not an issue with furniture. He writes that he can make mistakes in his drawings and he wants us to verify his measurements. Wonderful (voice dripping with sarcasm). So, I am left flipping pages again.

Now, for specific criticisms. The drawings for the Gamble Chiffonier are woefully inadequate if the reader wants to reproduce this. First, there are no dimensions provided for the mirror assembly on top. The reader is left to determine the dimensions from the scale printed on the bottom of the page. I find this utterly unacceptable. These are supposed to be measured drawings--why keep the measurements a secret? The drawings in the book are too small to get accurate dimensions.
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Format: Paperback
"Shop Drawings" is little more than it says it is. It would have been nice if it were more but it doesn't claim to be. If you have a background similar to Mr. Lang's as I do with drafting, then there is all you need to reproduce the Greene and Greene designs, at least from a dimensional stand point. You will however need to figure out the details on your own or reference some of the magazine articles on reproducing the Greene and Greene furnature. As Mr. Lang states in his book, it's not a how to guide. It's still a very good and informative book however and one you will want if you have visions of building some of this unique furnature.
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Format: Paperback
The original drawings for G&G furniture were often just rough ideas and nothing more than a starting point - typically, they did not accurately represent the finished piece. Bob Lang's book fills that gap with measured drawings of several original G&G pieces.
If you are a serious student of design, measured drawings are an invaluable resource. A feel for the balance and proportion of a design is essential in understanding that design. Nothing does that better than good 2-D elevations.
Bob's book provides much more information than just the measured drawings though. For the G&G enthusiast, it goes a long ways in furthering the study of Greene & Greene furniture. A must have!

Darrell Peart
author of Greene & Greene: Design Elements for the Workshop
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I am going to disagree with the negative reviews of this book. Robert Lang in his introduction, explains what he thinks of as limitations of the book - some of those being that he had limited or no access to the actual pieces, and that the plans were developed in part by some educated guessing.

The book itself is very nicely printed on heavy gloss paper, with a number of color photographs - really a very nice book. There is quite a lot of introductory material - much more than in his other measured drawings books. I think that this book should be used in conjunction with the Darrel Peart books, and other material, such as the many photograph collection books on Greene and Greene.
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