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Prowell's Wood Garden Gate #208






The lower, and beginning, segment of Garden Gate #208 was born from a study of lines and intersecting planes inspired by a stone residence with flat masonry rooflines and supporting plinths discovered years ago on a road trip through Pennsylvania. The remaining aspects are simply Charles left unchecked.

unique designer wood gate



The theater of the lower collonade shouldered by the functionality of old-time exposed joinery.
Extraornidary Wood Gate #208



Focal points have been around forever, from the eyes in Vermeer's Girl with a Pearl Earring to Monet's setting sun in Soleil Levantto.
Unusual Custom Wood Garden Gate 208



The lower collonade style of plinthes planed to a foil profile.
Contemporary Designer wood gate 208



Complex Wood Garden Gate 208





The consistency of a white, or plain finish is imperative. Without it and we're left with the infusion of too many competing accents

Shown as approximately 42" net width x 70" net height x 3" thickness.

Wood Gates Frank Lloyd Wright




Garden Gate #208 features a system of joints not commonly seen in our other 140 or so designs. In part because the gate is 3" thick and requires something more. But also as an element of design where joinery approaches performance art.

See Woodworking Joint #9


So far, a rendition of our joint #6 and something we've previously featured on select gates, with the tenon extending through the stile and ultimately wedged tight for a seasonal resistence to changing moisture levels.

  building a complex wood gate, by Prowell

A look at the completed details of the top pair of wedged keys.

  Designer wood gates from prowell

Dry-fitting the joint to exhibit the pair of top locking keys.

  how to build prowell's wood gates #200 series

Moving on to the body of the gate design. Beginning with a couple of simulated ledges, or flat rooflines with their eaves extending to overlap the vertical stiles, or plinthes that should further the illusion of a cantilever.

  How to build the extraordinary wood gate #208

The primary support joins to the smaller ledger with dual tenons. Roughed out on the bandsaw and cleaned up with a mortising chisel on Ben's new secondary workbench he just finish making. It sits on top of the primary benchtop for an improved ergonomics and an end of bending over for hours on end.

  Amazing wood gates #208 wood joinery

The Matching through-mortises in the ledger.

  Architectural wood gates by Prowell

Back to the new bench to clean up the mortises, with Ben's relatively new toolbox cabinet in the background, featuring a carcase of handcut dovetails.

  charles prowell building wood gate #208

The tenons will feature two locking pins, 1/4" x 1/4", which are cut in with a benchtop Delta mortsier.

  buolding the contemporary wood gate design

The tenons fitted to their mortises.


With the locking key mortises.

  unique wood garden gate #208 by prowell

With the Bubinga keys

  how to build prowell gates

A series of four receding foils filling in this lowermost section.

  building the architectural wood gate #208 by prowell

A decision to assemble the gate and componants now, providing a visual reference of what exists and an aid to help imagine what might be.

  architectural design wood gate #208

The above vertical collonades begin with a square-cut block that is mitered on the table saw and finally set the vise and hand-planed to the final 'foil' profile.

  Fabulous wood gates #208

The joinery for these is a simple dual oak dowel, bored with a doweling jig and dowel points.

  Unique and Unusual wood gates by Prowell

At this juncture we'll set the work aside and return in a week or so.

  Amazing wood gates by prowell

Boring the mounting holes for a focal area created for no other purpose than to offset the broad existing lines with yet more broad strokes to come.

  how to build prowell's amazing gate #208

A dry-fit to provide some guidance against a listing ballast.

  The Extraordinary wood gate #208

A dry-fit to provide some guidance against a listing ballast.

  how to build a complext wood gate, by prowell

With the exposed tenon and key wedge, the lower section is more or less completed.

  Building an asll-joinery wood gate, by prowell

Adding a series of horizontal rails with decreasing thicknesses, and a series of interlocked verticals at staggered lengths, puntuated with 1/2" oak dowels.

  Unusual designer gates #208

Adding a series of horizontal rails with decreasing thicknesses, and a series of interlocked verticals at staggered lengths, puntuated with 1/2" oak dowels.

  Creating the unique wood garden gate #208, by prowell

Dry-clamping the focal frame in place and from here we'll approach two remaining details. In the upper left corner a small interlocking and overlapping strap. And within the focal frame, a thin pattern of 90-degree wraps and joints.

  How to finish a wood garden gate

The final centerpiece detail.

  Designing a unique wood gate, by prowell




Featured in:
Fine Homebuilding
April 2016

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Unless otherwise noted, products appearing on this site are the sole design rights of Charles & Ben Prowell.