When I got going with the chesspieces, I looked high and low for patterns. There aren't many out there. So I kept asking and asking, and I was told "go make one." Well I didn't, I've made 15 so far. Some of the have worked, some have not, but I learned with each and every piece I cut. Here are a few winners and losers.
Then it hit me... what kind of finish would I put on them. I found out mineral spirits will clean a piece and it gives you an idea of what it will look like when it's finished.
Then I got serious and developed my production pattern. Here is how it started.