I've been making myself a new desk. The old one I had was getting very shabby and the materials I used back in '88 were not the best, so it wasn't worth refurbishing. I decided I would recycle most of the wood from the old desk to make into drawer sides, and build a new, L shaped desk to fit the space in my room.
I chose ash as the primary wood in the desk. It isn't quite as hard as oak, so its not quite as punishing to work with, and it stains very nicely, unlike soft maple. And it is far more durable than pine or poplar, which round out all the rest of the cheap woods available in my area. For those of you in the US, ash is the wood used in baseball bats, so it is resistant to impact damage and is resilient.
My design is a mix of older and modern themes. It borrows the simplicity of the Arts and Crafts styles, but adds the use of different colors of wood for an impact found in more modern pieces.
I took a few pictures along the way, and since I'm not finished with the desk yet, I'll be adding more.
Here is the first picture, showing the double thick legs and the mortise and tenon joints that give the piece its strength. There are also a couple of saddle joints here. As you might see, I was just testing the fit of the joints at this point.