Boxes - I'm No CharlieM1958

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Project by Russel posted 07-06-2008 04:56 PM 1964 views 0 times favorited 10 comments Add to Favorites Watch

I promised my brother I’d make him an entertainment center that looks kinda like a fireplace surround with a mantel. My first impression was that it would be pretty straightforward. It wasn’t and I’m still thinking on how to provide the shelves he wants, the height he wants, that’s not too deep, but deep enough to hold his wide screen TV. And, not make it so heavy that it’s difficult to move (everything in his house is oak). So, I’ve built the side panels and set them off to the side while I think.

In the meantime, I felt the need to make something. I had some walnut that was too thin (1/2 in.) to make anything too substantial, so I thought this would be good stock to practice making boxes. I’m finding that boxed are pretty cool and rather fun to make. And while I haven’t reached the creativity of Charlie, I’m having fun.

The first box is leftovers from the cradle I made. It’s mostly walnut with a strip of cherry down the middle. It’s 9” x 4” x 3” and to my mind, it’s just plain cute.

The second box was made because I’ve started drawing plans and actually using them in the shop. The problem is that once the paper gets into the shop it gets covered with sawdust and becomes quite difficult to read, so this box will hold my plans and a notebook, some pencils, a ruler and tape measure. I can take it to the shop and keep my paper dust free and I can take it in the house and practice my drawing and I can even take to my brother-in-law’s cottage and do a little thinkin’ while sitting around there. It’s 9 1/2” x 13” x 3” sloping to 2” and is made from walnut scraps and such.

The third box was inspired by a young lady at work. She recently gave me a couple African Violets to bring home so that the Mrs. (known for her compassion for violets) in the hopes that she could save and/or revive them. She handed me her pots in the top of a box that paper came in. It was rather bothersome to carry and less than attractive. I thought it would be nice if she had a box that would hold her pots securely and be a bit more attractive than cardboard. So, I grabbed some of that walnut and put this box together and then put a bit of cherry around the top to dress it up a bit. Unfortunately for the young lady at work, the Mrs. said, “Thanks” when she saw it. I guess I’ll have to make another for the lady at work. It’s 15” x 6” x 4”.

They’re all finished with a sealer coat of shellac and a few coats of satin wipe-on poly.

I probably should get back to that entertainment center for my brother now …

-- Working at Woodworking

10 comments so far

View SteveKorz's profile


2134 posts in 3678 days

#1 posted 07-06-2008 05:03 PM

Boxes are a blast to make, and you’ve done a great job with all three of these! I love the contrast with the wood. My favorite is the one in the middle. I have the same problem with the sawdust, I don’t know why I’ve not made a box to hold everything yet… another thing on my project list!

These all look terrific, Great Post!

-- As iron sharpens iron, so one man sharpens another. (Proverbs 27:17) †

View CharlieM1958's profile


16274 posts in 4182 days

#2 posted 07-06-2008 06:36 PM

Man, I’ve really hit the big time to have my name become part of someone else’s project. Do I get a royalty check??? :-)

Don’t sell yourself short, Russell, because I REALLY wish I had what it takes to make cribs like you do!

These are some really creative and well-made boxes. But if you still don’t think you are doing justice to that 1/2” walnut, I’ll give you an address to ship it to.

-- Charlie M. "Woodworking - patience = firewood"

View trifern's profile


8135 posts in 3731 days

#3 posted 07-06-2008 11:58 PM

No, but you are a Russel and those are gorgeous boxes. Thank you for sharing.

-- My favorite piece is my last one, my best piece is my next one.

View lew's profile


12017 posts in 3719 days

#4 posted 07-07-2008 12:57 AM

Great looking boxes, Russel!

Often wondered how many LJ’s projects get hijacked before they got to their intended users.


-- Lew- Time traveler. Purveyor of the Universe's finest custom rolling pins.

View Chris 's profile


1879 posts in 3955 days

#5 posted 07-07-2008 12:57 AM

Very nice Walnut; Nice boxes too!

-- "Everything that is great and inspiring is created by the individual who labors in freedom" -- Albert Einstein

View Zuki's profile


1404 posts in 4041 days

#6 posted 07-07-2008 01:02 AM

Some fine work R. the contrasting strip on the first box really sets it off. I like the second and may have to make one for myself. The third is also really nice.

Sometimes you have to step back from a larger project, do a couple of small ones to ensure that you “still got it” . . . and it helps to clear the mind.


-- BLOG -

View brianinpa's profile


1812 posts in 3687 days

#7 posted 07-07-2008 02:22 AM

Russel, they are all beauties. I like the idea behind box #2…in fact I think I need one of those for my shop papers. So many projects, so little time.

-- Brian, Lebanon PA, If you aren’t having fun doing it, find something else to do.

View Chip's profile


1904 posts in 4056 days

#8 posted 07-07-2008 03:05 AM

Beautiful boxes Russel. Wonderful work as always.

-- Better to say nothing and be thought the fool... then to speak and erase all doubt!

View davidtheboxmaker's profile


373 posts in 3769 days

#9 posted 07-10-2008 10:17 AM

Those are lovely boxes. Like most of the others making comments, I like #2 best – think its because its a bit unusual.

View Russel's profile


2199 posts in 3903 days

#10 posted 07-10-2008 12:51 PM

Thanks for the support folks. Apparently that middle box struck a chord. I got the idea from the furnace repair guy that came to the house once. He had a spiffy little clipboard on top of a metal box that he used to keep his work orders in. It was the perfect size for an 8 1/2×11 sheet of paper and the top was ideal for getting signatures and taking notes. Since I’m not a metal worker I figured I could make one from wood. I’ve got to make a few more now since all three of my sons are in a service type business.

-- Working at Woodworking

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