Blood Wood Box

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Project by maplerock posted 07-23-2015 10:49 PM 5074 views 10 times favorited 24 comments Add to Favorites Watch

I like unusual wood. When my friend Boxguy and I go out looking for woods to create our boxes, we bypass the perfect grains and ordinary boards. Instead, we look for unique features. It might be a bit of gall, a neat looking knot, worm holes, or any distinguishing features. Kind of like the mole on Cindy Crawford, or Dolly Partons… hair.

It is fun to find a wood that I know will cause people to look twice. This particular box has great streaks of red colors throughout. I generally don’t use stains on my boxes (but soon I might post a new creation that I did stain). All of these colors are natural. It has been finished by lots of sanding through grits of 80, 120, 240, 320, 400, and 600. Then cleaned with compressed air and rubbed down with alcohol. After that, one or two coats of MinWax tung oil, and two to four coats of Min Wax wipe on poly. 0000 steel wool between coats makes a nice, smooth box.

I titled this “Blood Wood Box”, but actually most of the box is made of Box Elder. There is a furniture grade plywood bottom, and splines of Afromosia. I like to use the same type of wood for the tray when I have enough, which I did here.

This box is a head turner. Like I said, we like to select woods that attract attention. We are kind of vain that way. :-) The top is odd too, with bark edged holes, that almost go all the way through. They create a quite unusual look. You sure wouldn’t want cabinets made with it, and the irregularities don’t allow for many practical uses like tables or furniture. For my box though, it’s perfect.

I hope you like it.

-- Jerry... making sawdust in the Knobs of Southern Indiana

24 comments so far

View Blackie_'s profile


4883 posts in 3796 days

#1 posted 07-23-2015 10:51 PM

Oh I like this one, very nice

-- Randy - If I'm not on LJ's then I'm making Saw Dust. Please feel free to visit my store location at

View Mean_Dean's profile


7057 posts in 4431 days

#2 posted 07-23-2015 11:49 PM

Definitely a great looking box—you picked out some amazing looking wood!

-- Dean -- "Don't give up the ship -- fight her 'till she sinks!" Capt James Lawrence USN

View Dan'um Style's profile

Dan'um Style

14192 posts in 5267 days

#3 posted 07-23-2015 11:55 PM

sweet … one of my favorites

-- keeping myself entertained ... Humor and fun lubricate the brain

View doubleDD's profile


10798 posts in 3327 days

#4 posted 07-24-2015 12:47 AM

You definitely captured the audience with this piece of box elder. The box looks flawless and really shows off well. This wood has a lot of character in more ways than one and you seem to have it all showing. Well done.
I just had a box elder cut down and in the process of cutting it into lumber and turning blanks. Hope to make something as nice as this with it.

-- Dave, Downers Grove, Il. -------- When you run out of ideas, start building your dreams.

View Bigkahunaranch's profile


140 posts in 2792 days

#5 posted 07-24-2015 12:54 AM

Wonderful looking box, the box elder steals the show.

Thanks for sharing


-- Living the american dream in central Texas !

View maplerock's profile


529 posts in 3084 days

#6 posted 07-24-2015 02:40 AM

Thanks Dave, Dave, Dean, Dan & Randy! I enjoy making these boxes, and honestly… I get attached to them. I don’t sell too many, and I don’t try all that hard. My home is decorated with boxes. Almost to the ridiculous level. But I really do like them.

I need to find an outlet to sell some. Sandpaper, lumber, hinges, chains, hooks, glue and more get expensive. I have an understanding wife who likes them as much as I do. I’m lucky there! I give them away for wedding and graduation gifts.

I need to get off my butt and find an outlet for them. I have some at a few local stores, but sales are rare. Any ideas as to where to find qualified buyers?

Anyway, thank you guys for the positive feedback. It means a lot!

-- Jerry... making sawdust in the Knobs of Southern Indiana

View DocSavage45's profile


9070 posts in 4126 days

#7 posted 07-24-2015 04:36 AM

Again ! Nice pick and matching on the wood. Have you considered Etsy for sales?

-- Cau Haus Designs, Thomas J. Tieffenbacher

View Boxguy's profile


2904 posts in 3551 days

#8 posted 07-24-2015 06:19 AM

Jerry, I am glad I got to see this box in progress. It is really beautiful. I like everything about it. The wood is spectacular and you have done a super job of pairing the two kinds. The arched bottom makes it look light and wistful. The tray is marvelous and adds to the usefulness of the piece. I love the way that beautiful grain wraps around the rounded corners. Really nice work here.

Your photography and writing are always first rate and this is a top flight posting that deserves to be a “Top Three.” Congratulations.

-- Big Al in IN

View Bud_3's profile


907 posts in 2508 days

#9 posted 07-24-2015 07:35 AM

Unusual wood indeed.

-- Personality and character of a man is like wood,you must polish it to shine.....

View jeffswildwood's profile


4952 posts in 3261 days

#10 posted 07-24-2015 12:06 PM

That box elder has to be the most beautiful wood ever. I wish I could find some. Wonderful job and it is definitely a keeper!

-- We all make mistakes, the trick is to fix it in a way that says "I meant to do that".

View drewpy's profile


1074 posts in 2641 days

#11 posted 07-24-2015 01:51 PM

Love it. Great work and the box elder is beautiful.

-- Drew -- "The greatest wealth is health".

View arvanlaar's profile


40 posts in 2482 days

#12 posted 07-24-2015 02:30 PM

That is one gorgeous box! Well done :D

-- New to working and learning as much as I can :D

View xraydav's profile


218 posts in 3254 days

#13 posted 07-24-2015 02:37 PM

Amazing box! love the wood and the key joints are perfect !

-- David, Norwood Mass, [email protected]

View RootandBranch's profile


241 posts in 2388 days

#14 posted 07-24-2015 03:43 PM

Wonderful! I’d love to find some wood like that. Thanks for sharing it with us.

-- Don, -

View bobasaurus's profile


3741 posts in 4468 days

#15 posted 07-24-2015 05:17 PM

That is some incredible wood grain and a clean-looking box, nice job.

-- Allen, Colorado (Instagram @bobasaurus_woodworking)

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