Honeymoon Box

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Project by Blake posted 10-30-2007 02:16 AM 3770 views 11 times favorited 26 comments Add to Favorites Watch

I am particularly fond of this box. The wood is a gorgeous piece of curly Koa wood. The small piece of lumber was my “souvenir” (some assembly required) from our honeymoon to Kawaii in July 2006. It was a gift to my wife and me from myself.

The piece of wood had jagged, un-even edges and it was not rectangular. So I spent a long time designing a box that would be the most efficient use of the wood. I toyed around with the idea of using the entire piece of Koa as the lid of a box. But with the odd shape of the piece this design worked best. I was able to design it so there was almost no waste of the original piece. I also wanted to see the maximum surface area of the Koa to show it off as much as possible.

No fancy joinery here, I just wanted to let the wood do the talking. It is held together based on the principle that side grain-to-side grain glue joints (with enough surface area) are strong. The two end sides are double-walled to form a rabbet for the front and back to glue to. The inside part of the “double-wall” has its grain oriented so that its side grain contacts the side grain of the front and back piece.

The curly Koa glows and shimmers like gold in the sunlight. Because I re-sawed the piece and matched the sides, the grain wraps around the box and even appears to wrap up over the lid. From any angle the grain appears to slant up and to the right. The bottom of the box is walnut. I plan to line it with a piece of dark green suede to remind me of the lush green rainforest which covers Kawaii.

-- Happy woodworking!

26 comments so far

View SPalm's profile


5338 posts in 5344 days

#1 posted 10-30-2007 02:26 AM

Stunning. Blake, you da man.

-- -- I'm no rocket surgeon

View mot's profile


4928 posts in 5499 days

#2 posted 10-30-2007 02:45 AM

Really a great box, Blake!

-- You can discover more about a person in an hour of play than in a year of conversation. (Plato)

View miles125's profile


2180 posts in 5468 days

#3 posted 10-30-2007 03:14 AM

Very nice box Blake. I like the simplicity of your design.

-- "The way to make a small fortune in woodworking- start with a large one"

View RobH's profile


465 posts in 5512 days

#4 posted 10-30-2007 03:18 AM

I love that box. Beautiful wood and beautiful execution. Keep up the good work.

-- -- Rob Hix, King George, VA

View Douglas Bordner's profile

Douglas Bordner

4074 posts in 5526 days

#5 posted 10-30-2007 03:28 AM

Wonderful, again. I think Steve’s got dat right!

-- "Bordnerizing" perfectly good lumber for over two decades.

View TomFran's profile


2964 posts in 5456 days

#6 posted 10-30-2007 03:35 AM

The wood does the talking. Very nice box. I love it!

-- Tom, Surfside Beach, SC - Romans 8:28

View Thos. Angle's profile

Thos. Angle

4444 posts in 5425 days

#7 posted 10-30-2007 04:12 AM

I like it , Blake. great piece of wood and interesting joinery.

-- Thos. Angle, Jordan Valley, Oregon

View scottb's profile


3648 posts in 5789 days

#8 posted 10-30-2007 05:34 AM

This is a beauty. Way to use the wood to it’s advantage, and not waste any!

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

View cajunpen's profile


14577 posts in 5528 days

#9 posted 10-30-2007 07:51 AM

Blake you have done it right with this one. I wasn’t crazy about the Mango – but that Koa is SPECTACULAR!!!! The design (which I really like) seems to get out of the way and let the Wood do all of the talking.

-- Bill - "Suit yourself and let the rest be pleased."

View Dekker's profile


147 posts in 5343 days

#10 posted 10-30-2007 12:41 PM

Really nice box, Blake. I’m sure it will bring you happy memories for years to come.

-- Dekker -

View Blake's profile


3443 posts in 5336 days

#11 posted 10-30-2007 09:08 PM

Thank you, everyone. I wish I could show it to you in person to do the wood justice.

By the way, another tip with the joinery: The inside portions of the double-walled ends does not go all the way up to make contact with the lid. That way the lid only contacts the box at front and back. This assures that even if it warps (cups) slightly it will not push itself up and create a gap in the front of the box when it is closed.

You can predict the direction a piece of flat-sawn lumber will cup by the orientation of the growth rings. (It will go the opposite way.) The wood tells be how to build my boxes; This piece of Koa told me that the best face of the best section of wood (the lid) had to go on in a way that might risk forming that front gap through changing seasons if I didn’t account for it.

Trees are mightier than men, even after life. We can’t stop them from moving.

-- Happy woodworking!

View Don's profile


2603 posts in 5639 days

#12 posted 10-31-2007 01:12 AM

Nice work, Blake. I enjoy your sensitivity to the wood. And, becauseI just love small wooden boxes – this creation is very special. Imagine if you didn’t make small boxes; what would become have this small piece of wood – perhaps just scrap? Heavens no!

-- CanuckDon "I just love small wooden boxes!"

View Blake's profile


3443 posts in 5336 days

#13 posted 10-31-2007 01:25 AM

Thanks, Don!

-- Happy woodworking!

View Chip's profile


1904 posts in 5555 days

#14 posted 10-31-2007 03:35 AM

Another gem. You should start a wood selection consulting service ;-)

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

View Andy's profile


1726 posts in 5370 days

#15 posted 10-31-2007 01:05 PM

I like the simple design of this box… makes the Koa stand on its own merit.And it does.
Very nicely done Blake!

-- If I can do it, so can you.

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