What You Need to Know About Marquetry


If you love crafts and decorative patterns, you may want to learn about marquetry. This ancient craft involves applying wood veneer to a structure to create a picture or decorative pattern. You can also learn about its techniques and the cost of materials. Listed below are some tips to get you started. Read on to learn more. We’ll also cover how to apply the veneer to a structure and the overall look and feel of the finished product. After reading this article, you should be well on your way to building a beautiful marquetry piece.



There are numerous materials used in marquetry, including woods and metals. In the past, veneer was made from logs, which resulted in sawdust that was not used for other purposes. Woods used in marquetry can include ivory, mother-of-pearl, pewter, brass, and various fine metals. In the 18th century, colored straw was a specialty of European spas. Some exotic woods are dyed to produce colors not found naturally.

Marquetry was originally made from individual pieces of wood veneer and assembled into predetermined images or patterns. A piece of furniture with trellis marquetry, for example, was made for Marie-Antoinette in 1780. Each compartment contains a single flower comprised of twelve pieces, a background, and sixteen pieces of black and white stringing. Historically, marquetry was a time-consuming process requiring skilled hands. With the introduction of jigsaw blades, however, this process could be made much easier.

A marquetry picture must have a surface area of at least twelve square inches, including the borders. In order to create the border, a thin veneer of wood is used called a veneer. Generally, this veneer is 1 mm thick, but there are many types and colours of wood veneers. Some of these types of veneers are better for marquetry projects than others. This book is a great resource for those new to marquetry.

Marquetry has been used for centuries and can be an excellent way to decorate furniture. Traditionally, marquetry was used in cabinet making, but it is now used in a variety of decorative applications – from wall art to furniture. The use of thin veneers is also more economical than inlay. And because marquetry is so durable and strong, it will last for many generations. So, if you’re interested in learning this ancient technique, consider taking a class in marquetry.

The craft of marquetry dates back to the 16th century, and it first gained popularity in Flemish cities. After the 17th century, it spread throughout Europe and reached France. In the 17th century, a French cabinetmaker, Andre-Charles Boulle, became the foremost name in the art of marquetry. Despite its enduring popularity, the art of marquetry has changed considerably since then. While wood veneer is the traditional marquetry material, other materials such as metal and tortoiseshell were also used as inlays. The use of these materials in modern marquetry dial art makes it even more challenging to perform in small spaces.


The Marquetry Society was founded in 1952. There are now over 1,000 members, along with affiliated societies and guilds, worldwide. The society publishes a quarterly magazine called The Marquetarian, which is regarded as the leading specialist publication on the subject. Among its many events, the Society holds a National Exhibition every year and organises demonstrations and open days. For more information, please see the website below.

Marquetry is an art that combines hundreds of tiny pieces of wood to create a mosaic-like design. The process begins by drawing or tracing a pattern on paper, then using a sewing machine-like device to perforate the design. However, back in the 18th century, thousands of holes were punched manually with needles. Next, a heavy brown paper was laid on top of the wood to protect it from moisture and other materials.

Riesener’s marquetry substrates are made from many sheets of veneer laminated together to provide strength against shrinking. Riesener sometimes pre-fabricates the veneer sheets and assembles them later in his workshop. This helps speed up the production process and produces more furniture in a shorter period of time. Regardless of the technique, the Riesener technique is known to create beautiful works of art that will last for decades to come.

Another marquetry technique, known as boulle work, uses two materials that contrast with each other. In addition to wood, it also uses tortoise shell and mother-of-pearl. This combination of materials creates more luminous designs than wood veneers alone. As a result, it is difficult to duplicate the same design twice, but is worth a try if you’re willing to spend the time to make a masterpiece.

Another marquetry technique involves the use of stencils. This type of marquetry has geometric designs, and is particularly appropriate for game boards and large tables. It can also be used to create earrings and other pieces of jewelry. The first step is to create a cutting template. Then, you need a guide fence that can be moved to create the correct angles. When cutting a parquetry piece, the cutting template is extremely important.


The cost of marquetry is high. It takes a long time to create, and each piece is uniquely different. Some pieces can be created in a single week, while others may require several months of work. Marquetry is a rich medium for contemporary artisans. The price range varies widely, but an inexpensive side table can cost as little as $5,000. A large, complex dining table may run up to $25,000, depending on size and design.

To make a piece of marquetry furniture, you should consult an expert. This is because the process can be very difficult if you don’t know how to do it. However, it can be an extremely rewarding and educational experience. In this workshop, you will learn the ins and outs of marquetry furniture, as well as the materials required. The workshop lasts for two days and costs $495. To attend, you should book your spot in advance, as places are limited.

For the most affordable marquetry furniture, you should select a design that is easy to match. It’s easy to do when you use the double-bevel technique. It involves cutting two pieces of veneer at once, with one piece of veneer covering the top and the other beneath it. The result is a perfectly-fitting marquetry design. The double-bevel technique involves taping the background veneer and insert veneer together, and cutting them simultaneously on an angled surface.


The marquetry appearance is achieved by applying a design to a piece of wood, which is called a ‘waster’. The design is then replaced by veneers of contrasting color. The resulting piece resembles a picture frame, with the contrasting veneers forming a border. The marquetry appearance is a result of the skillful application of veneers. It was a popular method in England up to the 1930s.

Woods commonly used for marquetry include mahogany, walnut, oak, ash, merbau, and wenge. The artist may combine other materials, such as glass, to create unique designs. The wood used for marquetry is usually found in the firewood pile or from home renovation projects. The best wood for marquetry is one that has straight grain and is resistant to warping, splitting, and expansion. It should also be non-toxic and contain no heavy metals.

English marquetry is commonly done in wood and often features dyed pieces for a colourful appearance. Floral marquetry patterns were popular in the 17th and early eighteenth centuries, and the craftsmanship was brought to England by foreign craftsmen. After the Industrial Revolution, however, the art of marquetry underwent a change in style with the emergence of neo-classicism, which gave way to geometric patterns, often in highly complex configurations. For more information, visit the Getty Museum’s marquetry instructional video.

Another variation of marquetry is inlay. Inlay involves cutting solid bodies of one material and receiving sections of another, to form a surface pattern. The term marquetry derives from the French word meaning «inlaid work.»