Material for the top of a jewelry box

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Forum topic by DonB posted 05-01-2012 11:38 PM 1502 views 0 times favorited 6 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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540 posts in 2926 days

05-01-2012 11:38 PM

Topic tags/keywords: question traditional

In progress is a jewelry box. Mostly white pine. Five drawers 2×18wx13.5d. Overall its 19.5 wide, 15×15 d/h. Looked at 3/4 for the top but it looks massive when most of the wood is 1/2. Sides are 3/4 similar to a raised panel construction. Question: What can I used that is about 1/2 thick for the top that when finished, will look like the golden oak the rest will look like? I have not seen boards, about 10 in I could glue up for a top that are less than 3/4. What say you guys?

-- DonB

6 replies so far

View Rutager's profile


27 posts in 2537 days

#1 posted 05-01-2012 11:48 PM


You can either mill the 3/4” stock down to 1/2” using a bandsaw, planer, tablesaw or hand planes. Or you might think about using oak veneer plywood in 1/2”, or veneering your own 1/2” ply with oak veneer or maybe some other contrasting or figured wood.


View KenBee's profile


109 posts in 2869 days

#2 posted 05-04-2012 08:07 PM

I don’t use pine for any of my projects even though I have seen some very nice projects out of pine. If I understand you correctly you want to use wood for the lid that when finished will look like the carcase pine? If that is the case why not just use pine? It is plentiful in various thickness X widths and is cheap.

I build boxes and clocks and most of my boxes I use either 1/2 or 5/8 inch stock for the carcase and the top is usually 3/4 inch. I feel 3/4 is overkill for the box carcase but not the lid. If I build a box with drawers the drawer framework is usually 1/4 inch ply and the drawer front is 1/4 or 3/8 inch contrasting wood. I have built a couple with 3/8 inch carcase and 1/2 inch lids, so for some reason or other my box lids are always thicker than the carcase.

Just my less than 2 cents worth.

-- If it won't fit get a BIGGER hammer.

View DonB's profile


540 posts in 2926 days

#3 posted 05-04-2012 08:19 PM

KB: I use pine because it is cheap. The wood conditioner and them golden oak will give the desired color. I’d love to make it out of oak, but I’d have to get a part time job to pay for it. Very little wood comes in 1/2 inch that is not plywood. I used plywood for the drawers and 3/16 for the bottom of the drawers. All the rest was white pine. The top took 3, 1/2 boards to glue up/KregJig. Much rather have one big board that is not composite. Anyway, its done, less the finish and it came out quite good.

-- DonB

View KenBee's profile


109 posts in 2869 days

#4 posted 05-05-2012 03:23 PM

Hi Don, If there is a big box store like HD or Lowe’s near you they carry all sorts of 1/2 and up Pine lumber in various widths. The ones around here also carry Red Oak from 1/4 to 3/4 thick, 3 to 6 inches wide and 24 inches to 10 feet long.

It is rare that you will find an inexpensive board wide enough to make a lid. I usually make my lids from 2 to 4 different kinds of contrasting wood joined together with a spline if I build one that large. After saying that I have several Maple and Oak boards that range from 6 inches to 9-1/2 inches wide and one Tiger Maple board that is 96 inches long and 9-1/2 inches wide.

I agree wood is expensive but I have, over the last few months bought enough Maple, Oak, Walnut and various other kinds to build a small house it seems so I decided last month I need to use up what I have before buying any more. I buy my wood based on the grain and figuring so in order to keep the wood as close as possible to its natural state I use clear Shellac on all my projects.

You are right in saying it is hard to find wood 1/2 inch thick unless you pay a ridiculous price for it. I have a Woodhaven planing jig that uses a router to plane down wood so buying wood that is 3/4 inch is not an issue with me. I don’t like to plane wood over 3/4 inch because it is a waste of wood and money taking more than 1/4 inch off a board.

-- If it won't fit get a BIGGER hammer.

View jaidee's profile


51 posts in 3013 days

#5 posted 05-07-2012 05:31 PM

Don, if the top overhangs the sides you could taper the edges from 3/4” at the side to 1/2” at the edge. Flat taper or rout a profile of some kind on the edge of the top. This would lighten the look of the top considerably.

-- I used to be all thumbs......'til I got a tablesaw!

View CharlieM1958's profile


16281 posts in 4452 days

#6 posted 05-07-2012 05:33 PM

I buy a lot of 1/2” lumber on eBay because it’s easier than milling it myself. Search for “thin lumber”.

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

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