So, last year I made a wee table for events. I was getting tired of nearly standing on things all the time when dancing around the furnace talking to people. Glass in the foot is not conducive to having a nice day. Bending over repeatedly to pick things up is also annoying.

Off to Larsdatters link page of art I went, and looked at lots of pictures.
I was especially struck with the one in the right wing of the Merode altarpiece. (The more astute of you will recall I used the left wing of it in my post on making my new cushion) (Photos below the cut)
Right wing of Merode altar piece
(You can get a larger version by clicking on it)

It appeared simple to make, and could perhaps be taken apart. I sourced some wood from a sawmill a few miles away and set to work. The main tools were a jigsaw and a knife to cut everything to size and trim the holes larger.
This is the result:
new small table

I didn’t put cross pieces between the legs in. It’s still a bit of a bodge job, but actually having slightly wobbly legs was useful on rough ground since I could adjust them to be more stable.
See all the paraphenalia needed to do alchemy!

The finish is linseed oil on most of it except the top, which is linseed oil with pine rosin dissolved in it. This is a possible medieval recipe, although I need further research to find the actual source.
Of course the table as a whole is a bit rougher than a real medieval one would be but that’s what you get when you don’t have the practise. 7 year apprenticeship anyone?
I certainly think it’ll be good all the way through the 14th and 15th centuries which is the main thing. And it packs down flat for transport, I’ll probably make a bag for it to make it easier to pack.

For the geekier amongst you, notice the tools that Joseph is using in the painting, they aren’t much different from those my great grandfather was using in his cabinet making business. Also he’s working indoors, but with large open shutters to let the light in. No glass, at least not in his workshop. He’s sitting in a popular sort of chair made of turned wood; you see them in lots of paintings of this and later times, often with little stools made the same way.
That’s what we need in re-enactment, more authentic woodwork. But it’s difficult to do right or expensive to pay someone to do it for you.

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