This is my latest project. A solid maple bureau I have built for my daughter. It is designed to allow for the movement of wood. Wood expands and contracts due to changes in moisture content and temperature of the air. Wood expands and contracts at significantly different rates along the grain vs. across the grain (about a 12:1 ratio depending on wood species).
If you live in a climate that goes through extreme variations in climate, such as here in New England, accommodating this movement is a must. If not designed for, eventually the piece will crack somewhere due to the immense stress in cross grain joints. As you will see all of the joints in this bureau will allow the wood to move, while still giving the rock solid structure required to make the piece last a lifetime.
The design of this bureau was taken from an article in issue #94 of Fine Woodworking magazine written by Christian Becksvoort. I have modified it slightly to accommodate my tastes and needs.
It Starts with the Wood...
Through Dovetails have Beauty and Structure...
Sliding Dovetail Trim...
Its DONE !
A little sanding (well ok, a lot of sanding), some tung oil and knobs complete the case. All interior surfaces are also finished to help even out the absorbtion of moisture which increases the stability of the case.