It is rare to see book trays in pairs and rarer still to see them in specimen woods.The back sections are dovetailed to the two hinged sides allowing the backs to be removed and the sides folded.
In addition to the elaborately shaped backs and sides which appear to be black walnut, one tray contains eight specimen wood and the other eleven. Although difficult to accurately determine all the woods they appear to include arbutus, partridge wood, oak, mahogany, walnut, box, satinwood, plum, laburnum, cedar, rosewood, yew, sissoo and orange. Two of the wood strips, three walnut and orange samples are named to the underside in ink.
It is known that Gillows imported and used all of the woods used in these pieces and in particular Gillows referred to orange wood a number of times in their estimate cost books for the period.