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Marquetry at Swede's Workshop

What a great classroom! It not only had table, tools and instructor, but there were
instructor aides as well. The marquetry class was held during a regular meeting
of the Lakeland Chapter of the American Marquetry society. They met (where
else?) in Swede’s garage in order to introduce some NS Scrollers to the art of

The society members made themselves available to help individual students.
Some were demonstrating by working actually on their own projects during the 2
hour class.

Marquetry, is also sometimes called intarsia. It is the art and craft of producing
pictures and decorative designs by the skilful use of the grain, figure and colour
of thin veneers of wood and other materials.

The class members used a tool called a Deep Throat Fret Saw on home-made
marquetry sawing tables. The veneer is cut at a 10 o - 12o angle to provide a
better fit.

So what can you do in two hours? Make a cursory leaf, just to get the concept.
Jim Dalton, trainer, normally spends at least eight hours with students to teach
beginning marquetry. As usual, our Scrollers were seriously engaged in their

Lakeland Chapter
Ron Bowman, President
Saint Paul, Minnesota
Tel:(651) 699-0563

* Meets the third Saturday of each month at the Rockler Store in Minneapolis, MN


Scott Murphy – student
Swede – student
Wes Hanson Knowledgeable helper
Craig Lutz – student
Archie Trott – student
John Mitchell – doing Juneau Alaska Scene
John Snell – doing family pic
Jim Dalton - teacher

How to cut sharp angles: cut to point & chisel hole in waste space.

Why they use hand saws?

To make a leaf with stem & veins: cut
overlapping holes. Three big pieces instead of 3
little pieces. Easier to fit.

Table at 10-120
Uses white glue – it’s water-soluble and softens the piece to fit better & dries
clear instead of yellow.

Use fingernail slide up and down blade to determine direction of teeth.
(teeth point down) blades .02 - .04

tape 2 contrasting pieces of veneer together
draw leaf on light veneer
poke hole with tiny drill bit to start
put blade through hole
cut counter-clockwise
cut lines on both sides of stem – between stem & outline of leaf
insert dark into light & cut again on lines between stem & outline & cut out stem.
Hole is left for seeing the direction of the grain on third piece of veneer.
Tape third piece of veneer (lighter than stem) & cut outline of the leaf???
uses sign makers application tape & blue painters tape