Box for a Christmas Gift

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Project by Mosquito posted 607 days ago 923 views 1 time favorited 17 comments Add to Favorites Watch

This box is going to be a Christmas gift for my girlfriend.

It represents a couple of “firsts” for me.
It’s the first time I’ve made a hinged box (or box, for that matter).
First time using my new Stanley #46 irons for a project.
First time mortising hinges.
The first time I’ve ever tried half blind dovetails.

The dovetails aren’t perfect. There’s some gaps in places, but for a first attempt, I’m happy with them.

The box front and back are 3/4” mahogany, as is the bottom. The bottom has 4 rabbets all the way around to sit into the box. The sides are 1/2” red oak. The inside is lined with 1/4” hard maple.
The lid is mahogany, padauk, and curly maple.

It’s 7 1/8” square, and 4 1/2” tall.

The finish is 1 coat of Zinsser SealCoat, 2 coats of Zinsser clear shellac, both applied with cotton rags, wiped on. I finished it off with paste wax applied with #0000 steel wool, and buffed with a cotton rag.

This one was 100% done with hand tools. I even got to use my eggbeater drill for the pilot holes for the hinge screws :-)

Thanks for checking it out.
Merry Christmas, and Happy Holidays :-)

-- Mos - Twin Cities, MN -- Stanley #45 Evangelist -

17 comments so far

View Brit's profile


5120 posts in 1469 days

#1 posted 607 days ago

That is a box to be proud of Mos and I’m sure she’ll love it. Not many people can say that their first half-blinds turned out that well. Great job.

-- Andy -- Old Chinese proverb say: If you think something can't be done, don't interrupt man who is doing it.

View Gshepherd's profile


1465 posts in 828 days

#2 posted 607 days ago

Nice job there MOS, I am sure she will love it.

-- What we do in life will Echo through Eternity........

View Mosquito's profile (online now)


4595 posts in 919 days

#3 posted 607 days ago

Thanks guys, I’m sure she will too. Though it is “shiny” and I know she doesn’t like that as much, but I wanted to finish it that way because of the contrast and curly maple on the lid.

I must admit, that there were 2 practice sets of half-blinds before I did these…

I just realized I didn’t put any dimensions for it… I’ll edit it to add those shortly.
It’s 7 1/8” square, and 4 1/2” tall.

-- Mos - Twin Cities, MN -- Stanley #45 Evangelist -

View a1Jim's profile


112010 posts in 2203 days

#4 posted 607 days ago

Looks great very nice work

-- Custom furniture

View waho6o9's profile


4825 posts in 1203 days

#5 posted 607 days ago

Beautiful work Mos.

The accent pieces blend well and it’s a very nice contrast of
grains, good job.

View Mosquito's profile (online now)


4595 posts in 919 days

#6 posted 607 days ago

Thanks Jim, I appreciate it :-)

Thanks Waho. I am definitely glad I decided to do that for the lid, instead of just mahogany like I was originally thinking. The hardest part about making the lid like that was deciding, stripes vertical or horizontal… eventually I decided to keep the endgrain on the sides…

-- Mos - Twin Cities, MN -- Stanley #45 Evangelist -

View bhog's profile


2070 posts in 1316 days

#7 posted 607 days ago

Pretty stylish box you made there Mos.The finish looks really good.

-- I don't drive a Prius.

View SASmith               's profile (online now)


1566 posts in 1613 days

#8 posted 607 days ago

Wow, all hand work.

-- Scott Smith, Southern Illinois

View Grumpymike's profile


1058 posts in 942 days

#9 posted 607 days ago

You should see it from over here, the light really pops off the grain of that lid.
Great build, and now that you are hooked on making boxes …
I’ll bet you get extra huggs for that beautiful project.

-- Grumpy old guy, and lookin' good Doin' it. ... Surprise Az.

View Monte Pittman's profile

Monte Pittman

13739 posts in 964 days

#10 posted 607 days ago

Good job. Learning a lot as you go.

-- Mother Nature created it, I just assemble it. - It's not ability that we often lack, but the patience to use our ability

View ShaneA's profile


5285 posts in 1225 days

#11 posted 607 days ago

Pretty stylish Mos. Looks like you made some quick progress on the tails. Well done.

View Mosquito's profile (online now)


4595 posts in 919 days

#12 posted 606 days ago

Thanks Brandon, I’m kind of starting to like the look of the waxed/buffed shellac

Thanks SASmith, maybe for “the next one” I can use your mallet for making the dovetails ;-)

Thanks Mike, I get distracted by curly woods… I just like to sit there and play with it in the light to watch it “dance”. Boxes are kind of fun…

Thanks Monte, I was impressed at my ability to do those half blinds. Don’t get me wrong, they’re gappy as all get out, but FAR better than I thought they would be, going into it.

Thanks Shane, like I said above, they’re still kind of gappy, but the tails are at least pretty close to most of the tail boards lol.

-- Mos - Twin Cities, MN -- Stanley #45 Evangelist -

View LeslieC's profile


147 posts in 724 days

#13 posted 606 days ago

Great job. I’m sure your girlfriend will love it!

-- There is nothing like a Grateful Dead concert.

View Mauricio's profile


6799 posts in 1778 days

#14 posted 606 days ago

Nice work Mos, the DT’s came out great.

-- Mauricio - Woodstock, GA - "Confusion is the Womb of Learning, with utter conviction being it's Tomb" Prof. T.O. Nitsch

View Mosquito's profile (online now)


4595 posts in 919 days

#15 posted 606 days ago

Thanks Leslie and Mauricio.

The dovetails look better in the pictures than they do close up, but thanks :-)

-- Mos - Twin Cities, MN -- Stanley #45 Evangelist -

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