A Little Cabinetree #1: The Concept, the Goals and the Challenges.

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Blog entry by shipwright posted 11-21-2010 02:48 AM 2979 reads 13 times favorited 8 comments Add to Favorites Watch
no previous part Part 1 of A Little Cabinetree series Part 2: The Box and the Branches »

When it comes to building boats, I guess after 30 years of it I am a professional, but as a hobby woodworker I’m pretty new. Boatbuilding has given me lots of skills and abilities with tools but the scale of projects and the individual manual skills required to make small cabinets and art furniture are totally different. I am a real beginner at this stuff and am having a ball trying to learn everything at once. I retired five and a half years ago, following which my wife and I rebuilt our house and I built myself a sailboat. When these necessities were taken care of I started to play with furniture. The first pieces were for our home and had to fit a certain kind of decor and agree with both our tastes. When we finally had all the pieces we needed, I decided to just let my creative side loose and build whatever came to my mind and the result was Oops!

I discovered LumberJocks as I was finishing “Oops!” and I posted it along with a few of my other projects. The response from all of you simply blew me away. This sort of recognition from other woodworkers who know what they are looking at and understand how things are done was quite new to me and a bit intoxicating I might say. Needless to say planning was already underway for a “next project” before the last was completed but the welcome I received here was a real catalyst to make me try to build something special again if I could. These are the “plans” that I came up with for the next project.

The main concept was another grain matched, mitered box, like “Oops!” but with significant differences. I always like to incorporate at least one thing in a project that I’m not sure I can do or maybe that I’m not sure has been done before. So here are the goals and challenges the I set for this little box.

1) Build a “box on stand” that will produce an emotional response in those who view it, with luck it will make people smile.
2) Learn scrollsaw marquetry.
3) Find a way to produce color in marquetry without needing to tailor a project to the colors of veneer I can find.
4) Hang the little sucker in a tree!

The challenges were really just making all the goals happen. The almost finished project seems to have covered the bases and I’m really quite excited about how it will finally look with all the finish coats on so if you’ll stay with me here for a few days I’ll walk you through the process from the sketch above to the final product and I’ll share all the things that I learned in the process.

Thanks for looking

Comments, critiques, and questions are welcome and encouraged.


-- Paul M ..............If God wanted us to have fiberglass boats he would have given us fibreglass trees.

8 comments so far

View sras's profile


4790 posts in 3093 days

#1 posted 11-21-2010 03:51 AM

Your first project posting shows that this is going to be another amazing project! I’m looking forward to it.

-- Steve - Impatience is Expensive

View Clung's profile


98 posts in 2745 days

#2 posted 11-21-2010 03:52 AM

I love your philosophy on setting your goals a little “out of the box” and then working towards making them happen. I’m sure looking forward to the finished product!

-- Clarence

View Napaman's profile


5526 posts in 4041 days

#3 posted 11-21-2010 04:30 AM


Your thoughts of finding a place where people “who know what they are looking at and understand how things are done was quite new to me and a bit intoxicating I might say”...very interesting thought that comes across this place one in a while…but I am glad you put it that way you did…this point usually comes from a frustration from those trying to sell their hard work—-and they are frustrated that the non-woodworking public just does not understand the level of craftsmanship of an “Ikea-centric” world.

SInce I found this place as a relative beginner I see things from a different perspective—-I am in awe of so many of you…so I think it is neat that a PRO is feeling great about sharing…we come from different ends of the spectrum but appreciate the same place as an opportunity to learn and share.

Of course these comments have nothing to do with your amazing project…cant wait to see the BOX in a Tree…that makes it sound so stark…I am sure it will be another bute.

-- Matt--Proud LJ since 2007

View Bearpie's profile


2601 posts in 2982 days

#4 posted 11-21-2010 05:51 AM

Paul, I love the way you think and work! You do beautiful work and you are definitely a pro. I just made you my buddy to be sure I don’t miss any posts from you!

Erwin, Jacksonville, FL

-- Erwin, Jacksonville, FL

View Schwieb's profile


1857 posts in 3425 days

#5 posted 11-21-2010 01:42 PM

This is exactly why I made you a buddy. I like how you think. I like what you have done. You write well you’re humble. I admire your talent and what you have accomplished. Verfy much looking forward to seeing what you come up with.

-- Dr. Ken, Florida - Durch harte arbeit werden Träume wahr.

View Lee A. Jesberger's profile

Lee A. Jesberger

6851 posts in 3944 days

#6 posted 12-17-2010 02:44 PM

Hi Paul;

VERY cool!



-- by Lee A. Jesberger

View TheHarr's profile


116 posts in 3503 days

#7 posted 12-17-2010 11:51 PM

Hey Shipwright, you don’t learn if you don’t imagine and experiment. I’ve been dancing around this technique using analine dyes and performing various shading techniques. I’m going to look into a few ideas I have and make something to show the gang. You triggered my imagination and I’m going to run with it.
Keep in touch.

-- The wood is good.

View stefang's profile


15881 posts in 3298 days

#8 posted 12-30-2010 01:44 PM

Some folks are just bursting with creativity and it is plain to see that you are one of them. I loved ‘Oops’ as I am certain I will all your future projects. Can’t wait to see them!

-- Mike, an American living in Norway.

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