Large Chest of Memories

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Project by griph0n posted 02-08-2012 03:23 AM 1278 views 10 times favorited 14 comments Add to Favorites Watch

A friend of mine lost his mother rather suddenly recently. His wife phoned to ask if I would build a box for some of her (his mothers) things. They weren’t the sort of things you would put out, or use, but putting them in the basement in a rubbermaid just didn’t seem right.

Although way behind on other stuff, this seemed like a nice project, sorta more than worthwhile.

It was hard to do in one way, and delightfully easy in another. Talking to her was kind of clandestine. It needed to be done by Christmas and he couldn’t know about it. Sort of odd feeling. But they were the perfect people to build for. She wanted a “hope” chest (not really the right name I guess) and that was it.

I sent a few pictures of frame and panel chests and dovetailed chests in different woods, some with tills, some with drawers, some with carving, some with funny curves, a few suggestions about dimensions and finishes…. and was simply told “whatever you’d enjoy making”.

What could be better. Saws and chisels. Planes and spokeshaves. Some rasps and cardscrapers. A little tried and true varnish hand rubbed on the outside. A little shellac flake dissolved in alcohol on the inside. I used hide glue for the first time, lots of time for a busy glue up.

I left it wrapped in a quilt and a tarp on the porch on the night before Christmas.

(but took it back on boxing day for a few more coats of varnish.)

14 comments so far

View a1Jim's profile


112104 posts in 2235 days

#1 posted 02-08-2012 03:26 AM

A wonderful chest and a fitting tribute to some one special.

-- Custom furniture

View SkolVikes's profile


39 posts in 1435 days

#2 posted 02-08-2012 03:42 AM

VERY nice. Love the shop too.

View bugz's profile


773 posts in 1321 days

#3 posted 02-08-2012 03:51 AM

A super looking chest, very nice.

-- Bob, Lewistown, Montana. Kindness is the Language the blind can see and deaf can hear. - Mark Twain

View Ken90712's profile


14947 posts in 1846 days

#4 posted 02-08-2012 10:23 AM

Great looking chest! Your joints are spot on!

-- Ken, "Everyday above ground is a good day!"

View Wheathills's profile


70 posts in 1879 days

#5 posted 02-08-2012 11:22 AM

I’d also like to say nice box and nice dovetails.

-- Wheathills, Derbyshire, UK,

View workerinwood's profile


2708 posts in 1725 days

#6 posted 02-08-2012 01:03 PM

Great job, very nice!

-- Jack, Albuquerque

View MolokMot's profile


122 posts in 985 days

#7 posted 02-08-2012 09:50 PM

That is a fantastic job, I really like the idea. Those dovetails are awesome.

-- MolokMot, Rocker, Woodworker, Geek

View doncutlip's profile


2832 posts in 2214 days

#8 posted 02-08-2012 11:44 PM

Awesome construction, beautiful chest

-- Don, Royersford, PA

View Roger's profile


14608 posts in 1462 days

#9 posted 02-09-2012 12:06 AM

a deluxe place to store some memoirs. all the dovetails, very nice.

-- Roger from KY. Work/Play/Travel Safe.

View Martyroc's profile


2708 posts in 963 days

#10 posted 02-09-2012 02:59 AM

Nice chest, and a noble cause.

-- Martin ....always count the number of fingers you have before, and after using the saw.

View jjw5858's profile


1117 posts in 1260 days

#11 posted 02-09-2012 03:31 AM

Just wonderful work on this. Great job and a great cause.

-- "Make something you love tomorrow...and do it slowly" JLB

View handyrandyrc's profile


33 posts in 962 days

#12 posted 02-09-2012 04:54 PM

Just fantastic work. I’d like to do some of these type of chests for my children. Marked as a favorite!

View helluvawreck's profile


15814 posts in 1524 days

#13 posted 02-09-2012 05:45 PM

That is a wonderful job on this blanket chest. It’s beautiful. They both had to really appreciate what you did.

helluvawreck aka Charles

-- If a man does not keep pace with his companions, perhaps it is because he hears a different drummer. Let him step to the music which he hears, however measured or far away. Henry David Thoreau

View BenR's profile


248 posts in 1286 days

#14 posted 02-10-2012 04:12 AM

Understated elegance. Classic.

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