The creation of these two cabinets begins with rough planks of wood which I have been acclimatizing in my studio for many months. While the exterior sides and door fronts are of ambrosia maple, the majority of the cabinet, the top, bottom and interior are of soft maple. I begin with rough planks of soft maple which have been cross-cut into manageable pieces, somewhat longer than the longest dimension I will be needing. The soft maple I have is fairly thick so I can remove a layer or two of veneer from the majority of the planks. This has another benefit in that the grain or graphics of the soft maple are similar throughout the cabinet since the veneers originate from the same boards which are reserved for the top and bottom of the cabinet.
In the photo there are a total of ten soft maple boards, eight of which will be used for tops and bottoms and the other two boards strictly used to slice veneers from. After having worked with wood for many years, I am still both amazed and excited to see the process of turning rough wood into fine, polished boards for furniture. Slicing veneers can sometimes be challenging particularly if the widths of veneer are wide. This taxes the bandsaw I use and in some of these cases it is at the limit of what it can cut. I need to slow the speed at which I feed boards through the blade considerably to compensate for these wide boards. Another benefit of utilizing veneers in the creation of furniture is that valuable wood is saved as a few slices of veneer can be sawn from a single board.