Article Keyword Videos to Watch
Click on the image to start the video.
Images - Links - Articles
Decorative Wood Corbels - The Finishing Touch that Makes Your Project Truly Unique
Looking to add a touch of timeless elegance to your work? Take a look at decorative wood corbels. They're a great way to finish off your custom pieces with a distinctive flair. And with so many different styles, designs, and materials to choose from, it's easy to make everything you produce one-of-a-kind.
Corbels have their roots in classical and medieval architecture. Originally they were carved stone supports for bearing loads on walls, but they have evolved over the years, and nowadays decorative corbels are also used in wooden furniture and cabinetry. The word corbel comes from the Latin word for crow, which refers to the curved, beak-like appearance typical to most wood corbels.
Wood corbels can be added to cabinetry or furniture anywhere in the home. Lately they've become especially popular in the kitchen. Many of us prefer to do our entertaining in our kitchen, and they have increasingly become the focal point of the home. Many homeowners want their kitchen to be more than just a functional space - they want a graceful, elegant gathering area that reflects their own tastes and personal styles.
That can be easily achieved with the eye-catching touches that only decorative corbels can provide. One popular application is to put them on the corner of kitchen islands, using large corbels that extend to the floor to bear the weight of the counter top. Medium-sized corbels can also be used to support countertop overhangs, while small corbels can be found under the oven hood above the stove. No matter what the size of the kitchen, carved corbels make great decorative accents.
Wood corbels offer the personal touch in other areas of the home as well. They can be used as supports for heavy fireplace mantels in the family or living rooms, and they're ideally suited as supports for shelving for books or family heirlooms. One of the more imaginative uses we've seen is using a decorative corbel as a stand-alone wall-mounted pedestal to show off vases, sculptures, or other pieces of art.
Decorative corbels come in a broad range of styles, from unadorned, simple elegance to elaborate, classically inspired designs. Wood corbels can be only lightly carved, or can be ornately carved with designs showing human faces, cherubs, or fruits and vines. Some popular motifs include acanthus leaves (inspired by Greek Corinthian columns), seashells, and scrolls.
Decorative corbels range in size from six inches to three feet in height, and are made from many different woods. Some popular varieties include red oak, cherry, and hard maple, as well as paint grade. With a virtually unlimited variety to choose from, there are wood corbels for every use and application.
One popular design is the Milan Classic corbel. It reflects the rich history of the Italian city of Milan, long one of the wealthiest cities in Europe, and a world center for fashion and design. This decorative corbel can be used to accessorize bookends, wall-mount bookshelves and decorative cabinets. The Milan corbel is also available with carved grapes and acanthus leaves.
The Verona Classic corbel is another decorative corbel inspired by the Roman and medieval architecture of the beautiful Italian city. The gracious lines of this strong corbel create a subtle presence in any room, and it works equally well as a support for heavy shelf or mantelpiece. A version of the Verona Corbel also comes with carved grapes that add a lush, ornate look to any cabinet design.
Decorative corbels often take their inspiration from classical motifs and designs. Yet for those whose needs run to less complicated designs, there are many simply carved wood corbels to choose from as well.
Decorative corbels provide just the right finishing touch for any project. Whether you're a hobbyist who wants to make something your family will cherish for generations, or a master craftsman creating a custom-designed room for your client's home, decorative wood corbels will help you get the job done.
Copyright 2006, Matthew Osborne. All rights reserved.
About the Author: Matthew Osborne is the Product Development Director at Osborne Wood Products Inc., a major supplier of custom wood products. Looking for wood corbels or wood products to finish your project? Claim your FR-EE Woodworking Plans and place your order at http://www.osbornewood.com/corbels.cfm