Carving The Palm Mirror
with Harry W. Smith
The Palm Mirror is hand carved from several pieces of boxwood dovetailed together to keep the grain of the wood going in the proper direction. Boxwood was chosen for its hardness and tight uniform grain. The only disadvantage to such a hard, dense wood is it quickly dulls the tools. These images describe the steps in creating the mirror. These are the same steps used for any of Harry’s pieces whether they are created in wood or metal.
Finished Gilded Mirror
My scale drawing taken from several detailed photos of actual mirror in England
Scaling the mirror to begin cutting the rough boxwood.
Rough cutting out one of the many boxwood pieces.
Roughing out the carving with a knife to define the different planes.
Refining the carving with a gouge and veiner.
Refining the carving farther with small veiner.
Using smallest gravers to add final details. Any slip means starting over.
Rough Sanding the finished carving.
Finishing the carving with tiny hand made riffler files.
Detail of the finished corner Carving
Applying the gold size to the finished carving.
Gilding over the now tacky gold size with 24 Kt. gold leaf using small brushes.
Finishing the gold leafing and burnishing the gold after the size has dried.
Finished Gilded Mirror detail
Finished mirror carved and gilded waiting for the antique glass mirrors.
Finished mirror in the presentation box.
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