First Marquetry Box

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Project by Wingstress posted 05-15-2009 04:31 AM 3477 views 23 times favorited 28 comments Add to Favorites Watch

This was my first marquetry project. I met Jane Burke,, at a woodworking show. I ended up buying her video and a starter kit of veneer. The lid is tiger striped maple veneer with poplar leaves and leopard wood branches. I thought for my first time, it turned out pretty well. I actually had a harder time building the box with the curved front. The box is made from walnut with birdseye maple for the pulls and tray. The interior liner is paduak. The ring holder was made from package foam with a foam top from Michael’s craft store. I just cut 3 slots with a utility knife. I was pleased with how well it worked. It holds rings quite well. I finished the interior with flock. The exterior is finished with 3 coats of tung oil finish and shellac. Tools used, Bandsaw, spindle sander, and router.

I made it for a charity auction for my kids’ school. I’ve never sold anything before, so I had no idea how much to value the box at. I figured I’d start the bidding at $100 with the hope it goes higher…

Thanks in advance for the comments…

-- Tom, Simsbury, CT

28 comments so far

View Betsy's profile


3391 posts in 3924 days

#1 posted 05-15-2009 04:37 AM

I’m sure the box will go for more than $100. I wish I had the patience to try marquetry – I admire those who do.

-- "Our past judges our present." JFK - 1962; American Heritage Magazine

View scrappy's profile


3507 posts in 3458 days

#2 posted 05-15-2009 05:35 AM

Beautifull box! Fantastic job on the marquetry. Great job on the curved front. I’m not that brave yet. Still trying to keep my boxes square! :-)

Great choice of contransting woods. All in all a very fine project that I am sure will bring more than the $100 starting price.

The mirror is also a nice added touch. Most jewelry boxes are so small a mirror won’t work good, but yours is a fine addition to the box.

Keep up the great work.


-- Scrap Wood's the best...the projects are smaller, and so is the mess!

View Jim's profile


80 posts in 4105 days

#3 posted 05-15-2009 05:36 AM

Nice job Tom. I still haven’t tried marquetry but seeing this may inspire me! I’m sure the lucky winner will be very happy with it. Kind of you to donate it. Keep up the good work, and thanks for sharing!

-- Jim,

View ryno's profile


106 posts in 3692 days

#4 posted 05-15-2009 05:49 AM

great looking box. I was wondering about your hinges. I’ve heard that similar ones are very tedious to install. Where did you get yours and were you happy with the installation?

-- It is better to keep your mouth shut and appear stupid than to open it and remove all doubt.

View GaryK's profile


10262 posts in 4016 days

#5 posted 05-15-2009 05:51 AM

That’s a fantastic looking box all around! Especially the inlays.

I like the quadrant hinges.

-- Gary - Never pass up the opportunity to make a mistake look like you planned it that way - Tyler, TX

View kolwdwrkr's profile


2821 posts in 3618 days

#6 posted 05-15-2009 06:16 AM

Very nice job. I look forward to seeing many more. Thanks for sharing.

-- ~ Inspiring those who inspire me ~

View a1Jim's profile


117127 posts in 3605 days

#7 posted 05-15-2009 06:21 AM

Top notch work beautiful

-- wood crafting & woodworking classes

View woodworm's profile


14468 posts in 3619 days

#8 posted 05-15-2009 07:04 AM

Very very beautiful.
Great work!

-- masrol, kuala lumpur, MY.

View Gary's profile


9333 posts in 3461 days

#9 posted 05-15-2009 07:50 AM

Beautiful work. $100 would be a steal

-- Gary, DeKalb Texas only 4 miles from the mill

View majeagle1's profile


1426 posts in 3524 days

#10 posted 05-15-2009 07:56 AM

Wow, very, very nice !!!
Love the design, the curved front, wood combination, marquetry, quality…......... what else, I Love It!!!
Great job and thanks for sharing.

What are the dimensions and also, what did you use to stick the mirror on without taking off the silvering on the back of the mirror?


-- Gene, Majestic Eagle Woodworks,,

View degoose's profile


7234 posts in 3383 days

#11 posted 05-15-2009 09:14 AM

Double that n double again says I.

-- Don't drink and use power tools @

View stefang's profile


15881 posts in 3362 days

#12 posted 05-15-2009 10:56 AM

A masterpiece. If you look at jewelry boxes on the web you will see that boxes not nearly as nice as yours are going for $1500-$2000 dollars from retailers. Don’t let someone steal it for $100, especially since it is for charity!

-- Mike, an American living in Norway.

View Patti Zongker's profile

Patti Zongker

203 posts in 3454 days

#13 posted 05-15-2009 02:03 PM

Very beautiful ~~

-- Follow your passion, and success will follow you.

View croquetman's profile


136 posts in 3349 days

#14 posted 05-15-2009 02:45 PM

I also had the good fortune of meeting Jane Burke, and buying her starter kit at a woodworking show in Richmond – nearly two years ago. Guess what. Except for moving all that I purchased into a nice box with drawers in my shop, and purchasing a nifty Exacto set (also place in the same box), I’ve yet to make my first marquetry attempt. Chicken! Perhaps. But I think it is lack of creative inspiration. I love your leaves on this box. The green works so very well with the walnut. I’m afraid that after working long and hard on a box, I’ll make a royal mess with the marquetry. Even if it’s technically OK, I’m still anxious that the design will look amateurish. Your design looks perfect. I’m inspired again. Perhaps with rain scheduled for this weekend, I’ll give it a try again. Thank you for sharing this fine example of craftsmanship.

-- Whatever

View Billp's profile


804 posts in 4228 days

#15 posted 05-15-2009 03:07 PM

Iam new to marquetry also and if this is your first box you are going to do great things. Thanks for sharing.

-- Billp

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