The French Dovetail

Today I had a few pieces delivered for my vintage furniture Designer Collection tonight and two of the items are vintage mid century dressers made by Arway Furniture Company.  What drew me to them was the legs.  They seemed a little boxy (but good for a guy/boys room) but I liked the clean lines.  I decided to take a risk on a tall boy (in blue) and a long double dresser (in light gray).  I’ll share pictures once I get them staged and looking pretty, pictures will be posted on our IG, FB and Etsy shop Monday.

This is the before picture of the long dresser. I actually thought it was pretty cool “as is” but it takes us a lot longer to sell traditional wood furniture so I had them painted.  I found this exact dresser selling for like $3,000 online (where is that buyer!).

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One of the interesting things about these pieces is that they have a French Dovetail on the drawers, this term was new to me and so I wanted to share it with you.  Have you ever run across a piece of furniture that you know was old and solid wood but it didn’t have dovetail drawers?  Well if  you are like me you passed on the piece.  Well now you can look to see it’s actually just a French dovetail.  Below is a detailed explanation of French + English dovetail, all you need to do is flip over the drawer and see if it shows a dovetail on the bottom!

We often get asked what is the difference between English and French dovetail drawer construction. Put simply: both are techniques used to join pieces of wood to form a drawer; however, they differ slightly because of how the drawers front, sides, bottom and back are pieced together.

The follow picturing illustrates the difference between the two techniques.

English Dovetail: Notice the jigsaw cutouts on the sides of each drawer piece, which when joined together form a tightly fit drawer. Fyi, the English dovetail technique is also commonly referred to as a butt joint.

French Dovetail: This technique is based on cutting out a slat in the middle of a board and also a corresponding piece of wood that can slide into the middle cutout. ** Source for this informations was found here.

I hope this is helpful to you! Don’t forget to come and visit us every Saturday at Rough Luxe Vintage Warehouse from 10-5.  I started a new IG account just for the Rough Luxe you can follow along @roughluxevintage.

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