Furniture, architecture and other works created in pre-industrial times often seem to embody a harmonious sense of design that eludes many craftspeople today. In this book, Walker and Tolpin examine traditional approaches to design that are all but lost in the modern world.

They show how cultures through the ages have designed a vast array of objects, all proportioned according to simple ratios of whole numbers, such as 1:2, 3:5 and 4:5. In a straightforward, engaging style, the book remains grounded in the application of these principles to woodworking design, taking subject matter that many find daunting and making it easily approachable.

It outlines quick techniques you can use in your workshop, such as how to compose aesthetically pleasing curves and tapers or develop molding profiles, using only a set of dividers, a straightedge, a pencil – and, most important, your hands and eyes. As practice exercises, it includes nine project plans based on the concepts covered, including a step stool, a lap desk, a tool tote, a side table and a vanity.

Illustrated with clear, useful diagrams and color photos, the book is printed on high-quality 80 lb stock. Smyth-sewn hardcover, 6" × 9", 186 pages, 2013.

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