Shaker Boxes with kids

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Project by DrDirt posted 12-22-2011 04:47 AM 1841 views 2 times favorited 10 comments Add to Favorites Watch

Went to he June Parent Child Shaker oval boxes weekend with my 10 year old daughter at Marc Adams School.
First three photos are from the class and arriving home, they made a stack of 5 boxes plus a bonus box.

As every year, we get an exchange student from France for the month of July.
For a souvenier to take back with her we used the templates from the class and veneer from John Wilson ( and together Diana and I made a box at home using a foam insulation as the bending form.

Final photo is is the two girls getting so show their work at the Guild Meeting in Wichita – Sunflower Woodworkers

These realy are a great project with kids, and use no glue at all, only clinched copper tacks and some toothpicks as pegs to hold the top and bottom to the bands. you make all the bands for a set of 5 boxes including meal and instruction time listening, on day one.
The second day you have all the tops and bottoms fittend and pinned by noon. – clean up and are heading home around 3 with a stack of completed boxes.

We did all of these out of Cherry

-- I don't trust trees. They're kinda shady

10 comments so far

View a1Jim's profile


114973 posts in 2906 days

#1 posted 12-22-2011 05:42 AM

These are great Shaker boxes and to have fun making them with your daughter makes it a 1000% more cool.

-- Custom furniture

View DrDirt's profile


4030 posts in 3071 days

#2 posted 12-22-2011 06:41 AM

Thanks jim -
SHe is a real gem – - she is all about being pink and ” girly” but also wants a jeep and asks if we can build a 4X4 mud bogging truck she saw on the weekend TV Extreme 4X4 and likes being out in the shop when she isn’t playing violin in the Salina Youth Symphony. Really diverse interests.

Ten is such a fun age!

-- I don't trust trees. They're kinda shady

View Trev_Batstone's profile


317 posts in 1822 days

#3 posted 12-22-2011 06:58 AM

Very cool boxes, and yes, with the daughter makes it that much more enjoyable. Maybe in a few more years, I can get my granddaughter involved in my shop, but she is only 18 months old right now.


View Bluepine38's profile


3316 posts in 2414 days

#4 posted 12-22-2011 04:28 PM

You really have a terrific family, and those boxes are nice looking, I have a chunk of 8/4 cherry out in the
wood shed that should be about right for some shaker boxes. We had some pretty good lady drivers at
the 4th of July Mud races, but if you thought wood working was expensive, do not go near 4X4 racing.
Children are great, and if you give them a chance, they can teach so very much about enjoying life and
living it, Thank you for sharing all this with us.

-- As ever, Gus-the 77 yr young apprentice carpenter

View DamnYankee's profile


3297 posts in 1891 days

#5 posted 12-22-2011 04:34 PM

Very cool, and very fun. My youngest usually joins me in the shop. Lucky for me she loves to vacuum up sawdust. For her 8th birthday I gave her her own tool box with tools (hand saw, bullet level, screwdrivers, plyers, tape measure, carpenters square, carpenters pencil).

-- Shameless - Winner of two Stumpy Nubs Awards

View robert triplett's profile

robert triplett

1565 posts in 2434 days

#6 posted 12-22-2011 06:37 PM

If a 10 year old can do, I bet I could! With the right teacher of course. I really like to work with kids who have varied interests. They make my day brighter and make up for the more challenging ones. That smile must light up her classroom.

-- Robert, so much inspiration here, and now time to work!!!

View Cantputjamontoast's profile


416 posts in 2761 days

#7 posted 01-10-2015 06:02 PM

Doc how did they do this in a day. Did the kids bend the wood?

Drying time from boiling?

As they used to say along time ago “Inquiring minds want to know?”

-- "Not skilled enough to wipe jam on toast!"

View DrDirt's profile


4030 posts in 3071 days

#8 posted 01-12-2015 03:53 PM

So the kids drill for the brass tacks and shape the “fingers” on the strips” then they indeed do the bending themselves (parents help hold the stip in place while they clinch the copper tacks on a little anvil). They do all of the cutting and the bending day 1.

Allowed the strips (rings now) to dry overnight on a form, then cut the bottoms and lids the morning of Day 2 to fit. So they were all complete by 1:00 Sunday, followed by shop clean-up, and you are on the road by ~3:30 heading home.

The drying time overnight was fine.. others recommend 2 days drying instead of 1, but we had no issues, and the lids still fit now years later

-- I don't trust trees. They're kinda shady

View Cantputjamontoast's profile


416 posts in 2761 days

#9 posted 01-12-2015 11:23 PM

I reread it I can now see the words second day.

Goodness gracious I am losing it!!!!!

-- "Not skilled enough to wipe jam on toast!"

View DrDirt's profile


4030 posts in 3071 days

#10 posted 01-14-2015 02:52 PM

Goodness gracious I am losing it!!!!!

- Cantputjamontoast

NAH….. we all are at various stages of having our moments…. varies from day to day. My Aunt called it ‘Oldtimers’ disease.LOL

I am happy that I only get it on days that end in ‘y’ .... uh oh!!! ;-P

-- I don't trust trees. They're kinda shady

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