|Project by Boxguy||posted 06-29-2012 02:04 AM||1684 views||1 time favorited||14 comments|
Pictured: This is a box designed to hold alphabet blocks for my grandson. It is 14 inches long, 9 inches wide and 6 inches tall. The sides and internal dividers are Makore from a tree in West Africa. The top and corner splines are Movingui from a tree that grew on a sunny hillside in Ghana, Africa.
Story: Many of us lucky enough to have children in our lives know the joy of watching them grow, learn, and play. At 18 months, my grandson is learning his colors, letters, and animals. At the moment what he knows is ahead of what he can say clearly. So, “elephant” is now “el’phunt.” If you are the boxguy, it is only logical that you make him a box for his upcoming birthday…so I did.
I can’t claim credit for the elephant carving on the top. I bought it at a shop in Santa Monica, CA, while we were there on vacation. It just looked like something my grandson would love. My thanks to the anonymous Indonesian carver who made it. Likewise, the detailed wooden blocks came from Toys R Us. I would like to make the point that it is possible to combine your talents with other artist’s talents and make something working together that you could not create working separately. Last year I worked up a whole show of “Teamwork Boxes” and had great fun doing it.
By the way, look closely at the front of the box in the 6th picture. Does that look like an eye or what? Isn’t wood grain surprising?
Techniques: Makore is a dream to work with, and it even smells good when you cut it. I recessed the carving by making the edges a little higher, and after much thought decided to screw it on from the inside. The carving may not make it through childhood, but the box might. So I thought I’d make the carving removable in the hopes that the box will be repurposed later. I also added thin corner splines near the top and bottom to make the box a little stronger and reinforce the weakest points.
Thanks: As always, thanks for looking and a special thanks to all you Lumber Jocks who take the time to make comments and suggestions. Your support helps keep me playing in my shop.
-- Big Al in IN