Nevis, one of our young neighborhood friends, asked me if I would help him build a Murphy Desk to hang on the wall in his room. Of course, I said yes immediately. Doing joint projects in the workshop is one of my favorite things to do, and passing along a bit of passion and knowledge for woodworking to a member of an upcoming generation is in keeping with an honored tradition within the skilled trades.
A budding and creative artist himself, Nevis sketched out his vision for the desk he wanted and we worked together on creating a 3D model in SketchUp, making changes and tweaks to the design as we progressed. Once we had shop drawings, we knew there was plenty of leftover birch plywood and maple in my shop to complete the project. We were particularly interested to see how the cool self-closing drop leaf hinges I had found were going to work.
Once the desk was completed, Nevis and his dad mounted it on a French cleat and we set about producing a few desk accessories that Nevis had also envisioned. One was a paper holder for the artisan pulp paper that Nevis had learned to make, one was a pen holder for his new set of colored pens, and the final piece was another pen holder to display some of his special pens.