frame and panel chest - question re: minimum rail size

In process of making a cherry frame and panel blanket chest, 40" long x 19" high x 18" deep (approx.) Corner legs (stiles) are 1-3/4" square (finished dimension); question is, for this length, how narrow can I make the top and bottom rails? I plan on using 3/4" finished dimension stock for the rails, and there would be a single panel, probably solid wood, grain running horizontally, of approx. 38" x 12" or so; it would sit in a 1/4" or 3/8" groove in rails/stiles. And, stiles would be mortised to fit a 3/4" long tenon in rails. Suggestions appreciated.
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I would say this is a totally astehtic question. One the panel is boxed by the frame it is a pretty strong structure, even with a floating panel. I would make them either exactly the same as the legs/stiles or some derivitave adding or subtracting 1/3rd's. (ie 2/3rd's wide or 1/3rd less) This is sorta close to the golden triangle value and a quick way to generate some pleasing ratios. Just sketch it out and see what looks best to your eye.
One other possibility is to do a wider rail at the bottom. This is especially appropriate if there is no base to add some visual weight to the bottom of the piece. So top rail exactly the same as the stiles and bottom rial 1 2/3rds' larger.
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