Hand-crafted from start to finish – crafting the Claude petite chest.
Luna runs his hand over the freshly cut curves of the Claude petite chest’s front. The shape is serpentine, undulating elegantly. “This is one of my favourite pieces to make,” he says. “Specifically because of the curves in the drawer front. As a carpenter, making something clean and straight is nice, but it doesn’t compare to carving our curves.”
While Luna fashions the frame, Masroor crafts the Claude’s perfectly-rounded bun feet on a lathe. It’s impressive, and not a little bit dizzying to watch. A rectangular block of mango wood spins at high speed while the carpenter holds a chisel against it, turning it in directions determined by the shape he is trying to craft. Soft woodchips fly out of the grooves and blanket the workshop floor.
Streaks of sunlight stream through the workshop illuminating a fine curtain of sawdust that hangs in the air. Luna assembles the Claude petite chest. He attaches the bun feet and puts the drawers together; he inspects every detail and every curve; he slides the drawers in and out, gauging the smoothness of their traditional wooden runners.
The sound of electric sanders bores through the walls of the workshop’s finishing section. Amer Chand, has taken his freshly sanded Claude outside so that he can finish it in a peaceful corridor. After waiting for the stain to dry, he carefully applies a mix of water and primer that gives the piece a look of having been lime-washed.
It’s this lime-washed effect finish coupled with the serpentine front that work to achieve the chest’s rustic-country feel. It’s a look that can only be completed with brass plate-and-ring handles that Amer Chand hammers into place, stepping back to admire them when he does. “What do you think?” He asks us. “It looks like a beautiful antique, doesn’t it?” We nod our heads and smile; it’s exactly the look we were going for.
Take a closer look at our Claude collection.