Blanket Chest / Shoe Cubby

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Project by Skee posted 05-17-2007 03:24 PM 2936 views 5 times favorited 18 comments Add to Favorites Watch

So, this was my first really big glue up. The sides are frame and panel with 3/4” red oak and a groove for 1/4” plywood. I basically built 4 panels and then put them together with tongue and groove joinery at each corner. The bottom shelve is designed for shoes, the top box is designed for blankets or mittens or whatever.

Pros: I learned a lot about complex glue ups. And I also learned about 1/4” plywood really be more like 3/16” plywood – the panels move because I didn’t glue them into place like I should have.

Cons: I had a couple of glue runs from too much glue in the dados – they were hard to get off the plywood because I didn’t want to sand aggressively in fear of going through the veneer.

This project took about a month of evenings and weekends all together.

-- -- Skee from MN

18 comments so far

View Karson's profile


35273 posts in 5481 days

#1 posted 05-17-2007 03:44 PM

Great Job. Yes Metric plywood has made our lives easier hasn’t it.

If you are using much with plywood look for a metric router bits for style and rail.

I’ve found that I quite often put my own veneer on top of plywood and in doing so I actually make it 1/4”

-- I've been blessed with a father who liked to tinker in wood, and a wife who lets me tinker in wood. Appomattox Virginia [email protected]

View RJones's profile


317 posts in 5236 days

#2 posted 05-17-2007 04:01 PM

Looks pretty good Skee:) So how did you join the sides to the front and back? Where those T&G as well


View PanamaJack's profile


4483 posts in 5158 days

#3 posted 05-17-2007 04:04 PM

Skee this is looking great. What type of finish are you going to put on this chest? The woodgrain is fantastic on the front.

-- Carpe Lignum; Tornare Lignum (Seize the wood, to Turn the wood)

View Skee's profile


85 posts in 5109 days

#4 posted 05-17-2007 04:07 PM

I had no idea lumber jocks was so active! I’m going to have to resist the urge to be here all the time…..

RJones – Groove on the edge of the front panels accepted a tongue from the side panels. I wasn’t sure if this was enough joinery for the structure, but it seems to have worked well.

PanamaJack – I stained it with a water based wipe on, and applied 2 coats of wipe on poly. Okay, I say I did it, but the truth is my wife does the finishing for me. I build it, she stains and covers them.

-- -- Skee from MN

View woodspar's profile


710 posts in 5180 days

#5 posted 05-17-2007 04:18 PM


Yes, it can be so addictive.

Did you know that you can buy router bits that are sized for the “cheap” plywood that some manufacturers undersize? The sizes are 15/64, 31/64, and 23/32. They do not seem to make one for 3/8. The reason I made the distinction regarding plywood suppliers is that I have some marine grade meranti that is dead-on 3/8.

-- John

View woodspar's profile


710 posts in 5180 days

#6 posted 05-17-2007 04:23 PM

I have found that the best way to cut grooves for a plywood panel is to do it on the router table with a slot cutting bit. You get a slot cutting bit that is undersized – say 1/4 for 3/8 panel. You set the depth for how deep you want to inset the panel in the styles and rails and then run the cut. Then you flip the work piece over and you get a perfectly centered groove.

Of course you would need to change this if you were going for a raised panel where you wanted to offset the groove.

-- John

View CharlieM1958's profile


16292 posts in 5299 days

#7 posted 05-17-2007 04:34 PM

Great looking chest. I love the grain.

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

View RJones's profile


317 posts in 5236 days

#8 posted 05-17-2007 04:53 PM

Yeah I would think that wood work. You are gluing long grain to long grain so… that should work pretty well. With that being said you probably could have left the front and back panels just a touch proud to create a small shadow and detail, either way it looks great!


View Chip's profile


1904 posts in 5173 days

#9 posted 05-18-2007 03:33 AM

Beautiful piece and great craftsmanship Skee! Thanks for sharing this with us.

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

View scottb's profile


3648 posts in 5408 days

#10 posted 05-18-2007 04:22 AM

yeah, it’s really addictive here.

I like this project, it has elements I’d like to incorporate into an entry bench that I might attempt if the kitchen plans lean that way. entry bench, or I’m bumping out a wall for a closet.

-- I am always doing what I cannot do yet, in order to learn how to do it. - Van Gogh -- --

View oscorner's profile


4563 posts in 5392 days

#11 posted 05-18-2007 04:26 AM

That is a beautiful chest/shoe cubby, Skee! You’ve done an excellent job(I can’t see the glue runs, but just between the two of us, they happen to me too) LOL.

By the way, what’s with all those license plates?

-- Jesus is Lord!

View Skee's profile


85 posts in 5109 days

#12 posted 05-18-2007 05:14 AM

Guys, thanks for all the support. I’ve been a Lumber Jock for all of about 24 hours now and I can’t believe how much I am enjoying it. The group is very supportive!!

Glue runs were mostly on the shoe shelf, so it doesn’t show and you really have to look for it.

If you look at the third picture I attached (the side view) you will see a gap between the front panel and the side panel in the middle on the left side. It really bugs me every time I look at it. I believe the craftsman (and I am using this term loosely) sees all the defects for their projects.

Plywood bits: Yeah, I’ve seen a couple of sets that have a range bracketing each size by 1/16”. So, for the 3/4” size they also provide an 11/16” and a 13/16” for over and under sized sheet goods.

This chest is absolutely the fanciest thing I’ve built to date and the process of learning so much was great!

-- -- Skee from MN

View cconway's profile


37 posts in 5130 days

#13 posted 05-18-2007 05:31 AM


Nice job! I may need to make one myself.

-- Charlie, Connecticut

View MsDebbieP's profile


18619 posts in 5242 days

#14 posted 05-18-2007 07:02 PM

love the shoe cubby!!!
Looks great.

-- ~ Debbie, Canada (, Young Living Wellness )

View jockmike2's profile


10635 posts in 5328 days

#15 posted 05-24-2007 03:04 PM

Nice work Skee, good “craftsmanship” keep it up and soon you’ll be as good as Dick. Say, in 50 years or so. me too. jockmike.

-- (You just have to please the man in the Mirror) Mike from Michigan -

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