I had to replace the badly damaged top of an end table. I decided on this simple frame-and-panel construction that leaves space for a removable laser-cut design that can be swapped out for variety.
The frame-and-panel is traditional carpentry, walnut with a cabernet stain and shellac finish around a plywood panel. (I considered using a sturdy premade picture frame, glueing a plywood panel inside, and adding reinforcement on the corners. That might have been strong enough; I’m not sure.)
The insert is 1/8" maple plywood with laser-cut scrollwork over a dark brown backdrop. The whole thing is topped by tempered glass, custom-cut by a local glazier.
I had in mind a more complex colorful marquetry piece for the insert, but decided to do this simpler pattern first, so the job could be done by Christmas. (Which it wasn’t, of course!)
(For the end table, I compressed the pattern horizontally to make it fit.)
Did you use a generator for the pattern?
Yes. I probably went through around 100 images. The trick is coming up with one that is simultaneously “complex enough to be interestingly beautiful” and “simple enough to actually construct with a laser cutter” — not to mention “gets my wife’s approval”.
The “more complex colorful marquetry piece” I mentioned might have been be this one, which would be a nice Christmas piece, but would require a lot of effort to make into something usable:
For the concept of a glass-covered table with artistic insert, I was inspired by this table, which I saw in a shop in Los Gatos:
I love everything about this. What a wonderful way to enhance small tables and large boxes.
Great ideas are the ones that foster more at least good ideas. I’m thinking of an artist I know who might want to collaborate.
Beautiful, and masterfully executed.
Looks like a great project
I really love this!! And thank you so much for the share. I must say, I like the one you did more than the marquetry piece. I think it has a more timeless, beautiful aesthetic.
That’s gorgeous! If you’re looking for more inspiration, you might take a gander through some cutwork lace scrolls. They’re already designed to be 2D so very little modification would be necessary
those are interesting, haven’t seen that before… would make some good art
Such a neat idea and so well done! Hope you’ll continue to post as you make new ones. Lovely!
A beautiful upgrade for your table!
Looks amazing! Thanks for sharing it with us.
I agree! Though I think I might change the color, make it a little warmer.
What a wonderful idea! And beautifully executed as always. The glass covering is essential, and I like how flexible it makes the whole project.
This is beautiful, @Purplie! I’ve been thinking about refinishing a table top, and this has opened up a whole new world of possibilities! Thank you for sharing!
That is absolutely gorgeous! Thanks for the share.
Can you share which pattern generator you used?