For sale on Ebay: Veneered 16″ Chess Board 1.5″ squares Green and Yellow Figured Wood
There are several people selling this board, new, branded House of Staunton, for around $180. That seems crazy to me, but, whatever. I have a used one that’s faded, so it’s a lot cheaper.
Evidently, all the wood is maple. “Erable” is French for maple. The green parts are stained wood. A new board has a lot more contrast: the green is bright, and the light squares are a paler yellow. This board probably just aged, and the light wood got darker, and the green pigments in the stain faded. Maybe they used a green dye. It doesn’t really matter, because the real feature of this board is the figure in the wood.
Figure is the wavy pattern in the wood. You can’t see it in the photos, but the fine lines in the wood cause the patterns to reflect light, almost shimmering, and have a “3D” appearance. The birdseye maple figuring makes the little waves look like spheres bulging out of the wood. The bigger waves in the green make it looks like ripples in water, or the rainbows on soap bubbles.
The wood was cut into a veneer, and the pieces arranged so they would look nice. Because the slices are all from one part of the tree, they look similar, and can be arranged almost symmetrically. It’s a nice effect.