Shaker Silverware Tray

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Project by SteveL posted 11-01-2008 04:13 AM 4285 views 11 times favorited 7 comments Add to Favorites Watch

This is my version of Christopher Schwartz’ Shaker Silverware Tray that he did in Woodworking Magazine a few months ago. Like his, I chose to make mine of cherry but used walnut dowels to attach the handle rather than cut nails. I also skipped the nails at the corners in favor of dovetails. I suppose the nails are more authentic Shaker, but that’s not the point unless you’re making a true reproduction. My piece was donated to the Crefeld School for their annual fundraiser auction. I hope it goes for more than minimum wage for the number of hours I put in!

-- SteveL

7 comments so far

View lew's profile


13488 posts in 5095 days

#1 posted 11-01-2008 04:45 AM

Beautiful Tray. I believe the Shakers would approve of your modifications.

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

View CharlieM1958's profile


16292 posts in 5558 days

#2 posted 11-01-2008 04:48 AM

Very elegant.

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

View Dorje's profile


1763 posts in 5337 days

#3 posted 11-01-2008 05:46 AM

Very nice Steve! What method did you use for fairing and finishing the the curve on the handle?

-- Dorje (pronounced "door-jay"), Seattle, WA

View David's profile


1969 posts in 5479 days

#4 posted 11-01-2008 06:49 AM

Steve -

Excellent! I really like the lines and crisp work.



View woodyone's profile


231 posts in 4931 days

#5 posted 11-01-2008 11:16 AM

looks great i really like the design, well done.


-- Woody, UK

View SteveL's profile


183 posts in 5108 days

#6 posted 11-03-2008 03:13 AM


I made a router template for the handle, traced the outline and cut just outside of the line with my bandsaw first. For the inside of the handle I drilled using forstner bits to hog out most of the material. Next I used a pattern routing bit with the template attached to two tabs on either end that I later sawed off. Finally to “fair” the curve, I used a spoke shave and a card scraper. This still left me about 1/32 high where I met the box edge (because I planed the top edge of the box to remove saw marks). To adjust the handle to meet exactly, I then planed the bottom edge of the handle until I got an exact fit. The overall size is about 7-3/4” x 18” long.

BTW: At $100, it sold for a bit less than minimum wage—oh well… I think if I were making these as a product, I’d want about $175 for them.

-- SteveL

View Dorje's profile


1763 posts in 5337 days

#7 posted 11-03-2008 05:38 AM

Very sensible…Great! Thanks for the details!

-- Dorje (pronounced "door-jay"), Seattle, WA

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