Memory Box

  • Advertise with us
Project by Chris Wright posted 12-29-2009 06:42 AM 2235 views 0 times favorited 8 comments Add to Favorites Watch

My wife asked me to make a memory box for someone very close to us who passed away last summer. She found pictures of what she liked and asked me to do one like the one she found. I don’t think I”ll do another box with this style of box joint. She wanted the walnut to surround each pin. Now I know these types of joints can be done with a Leigh or even the Porter Cable Omni Jig, but not having the right bits at the shop I decided to improvise. I lined each panel with 1/16” veneer of walnut, set the dado in my table saw to cut a 3/8” gap with a 1/4” pin. I glued 1/16” veneers on to the pins to reduce the gap to 1/4”. As any of you who’ve cut box joints using a dado set may know, the spacing is never perfect, I did have to adjust a few of the pins to get the box to fit together. The lid is walnut with a quarter sawn white oak. I wasn’t thinking when I measured the box for the lid. I wanted to have it a 1/4” all the way around smaller then the box and forgot about how to hinge it, so I had to add two little pieces on the back of the lid to allow for them. The final size is 10” x 12.5” x 5”. She thought it was perfect.

I’ve decided to enter this into the Winter contest. I’ve always liked the idea of useing contrasting woods for added effect. You can see that on several of my projects. Contrasting color can add so much to the esthetics. Here, the accents around the pins highlights an area that normally wouldn’t be noticed and helps to define them. With the lid the walnut helps to highlight the quartered white oak and, with the mitered cornors allows the viewer to focus on the grain patterns in the wood. If this box were just oak, or walnut, it would be a rather boring piece (in my opinion), but with the contrasting colors it brings out the best in both woods.

-- "At its best, life is completely unpredictable." - Christopher Walken

8 comments so far

View woodworm's profile


14472 posts in 4041 days

#1 posted 12-29-2009 07:02 AM

Looks very nicely done. And the inlay box joint is not a simple task to do it without using jig.
You did it very well Chris!

-- masrol, kuala lumpur, MY.

View bobkberg's profile


439 posts in 3523 days

#2 posted 12-29-2009 07:11 AM


-- Bob - A sideline, not how I earn a living

View Woodfix's profile


345 posts in 3750 days

#3 posted 12-29-2009 09:06 AM

Lovely work. That is a lot of work. But the result is outstanding.

-- I would rather have the most memories, than the most money.

View Andrew's profile


709 posts in 3649 days

#4 posted 12-29-2009 02:00 PM

Great job, does sound like a lot of work, but it paid off.

-- Even a broken clock is right twice a day, unless, it moves at half speed like ....-As the Saw Turns

View BrianK's profile


31 posts in 3588 days

#5 posted 12-29-2009 03:47 PM

Very well done. Nice compliment of contrasting woods.

-- - Brian

View a1Jim's profile


117689 posts in 4027 days

#6 posted 12-29-2009 04:13 PM

Nice box Chris

View Walnut_Weasel's profile


360 posts in 3672 days

#7 posted 12-29-2009 04:19 PM

I can only see a glimpse of the add ons for the hinges but I think they look good. I like that it breaks up the design and more clearly defines front and back.

-- James -

View Joedcatman's profile


172 posts in 3565 days

#8 posted 01-02-2010 08:22 PM

Great box joints, great box! Your extra work on the joints really sets this box off from anything I’ve ever made. We all can see the care you put into it and many of us understand the reason.

-- JoeR Nothing that I could make will ever be perfect but I'll use it anyway.

Have your say...

You must be signed in to post the comments.

DISCLAIMER: Any posts on LJ are posted by individuals acting in their own right and do not necessarily reflect the views of LJ. LJ will not be held liable for the actions of any user.

Latest Projects | Latest Blog Entries | Latest Forum Topics