Teak and turquoise jewelry tray

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Project by MrLaughingbrook posted 02-21-2018 12:29 PM 1394 views 1 time favorited 15 comments Add to Favorites Watch

Please enjoy my pictures and descriptions. I had blocks of teak that were included in the packing materials of some patio furniture purchased 15 years ago. I think they meant them to be used as mallets during assembly of the tenons and installation of dowels. Anyway, I finally got around to seeing a tray was in there if I could just route around it.

Used a forstner drill bit to start:

Made a jig to guide the bushing on a bowl bit on the router table. I just CA glued some MDF blocks together.

And, mounted the block upside down on it using double sided tape. I trimmed off the overhangs after I took this picture.

After completing the bowl cuts I added some shims to guide a flush trim straight bit to cut a smaller recess 1/32 deep in the floor.

Decorated it with turquoise inlay in 1/8th and 1/16th dados and swede-tex.

Finished with danish oil and renaissance wax.

I ruined one with a mistake at the router, but I’m happy to have accomplished one successful tray using new techniques for me. My wife likes it.

-- MrLaughingbrook

15 comments so far

View Ivan's profile


17012 posts in 4112 days

#1 posted 02-21-2018 01:10 PM

Very cute with those inlays.

-- Ivan, Croatia, Wooddicted

View ChrisK's profile


2059 posts in 4326 days

#2 posted 02-21-2018 01:14 PM

Looks great, nice work.

-- Chris K

View Dan P's profile

Dan P

755 posts in 3136 days

#3 posted 02-21-2018 02:57 PM

creative and useful. Looks great too!

-- Daniel P

View observer100's profile


476 posts in 2355 days

#4 posted 02-21-2018 04:46 PM

Very attractive looking project! There are a number of nice looking features all in one finished product.

-- Seeing is believing.

View Jerry's profile


3488 posts in 2892 days

#5 posted 02-21-2018 05:29 PM

Very Nice!

-- There are good ships and there are wood ships, the ships that sail the sea, but the best ships are friendships and may they always be.

View oldnovice's profile


7753 posts in 4612 days

#6 posted 02-21-2018 06:55 PM

Teak and turquoise, nice choice of materials even if though the teak was packing material!
It turned out beautifully!

-- "Facts do not cease to exist because they are ignored." -- Aldous Huxley

View jimintx's profile


939 posts in 2829 days

#7 posted 02-21-2018 07:10 PM

That’s a gorgeous piece.

I’d like to find a tutorial about how to inlay the turquoise the way you’ve done it. I know about routing out the inlay area, its the procurement and then the handling of the turquoise i don’t know about.

Maybe there is a youtube on the methods …

-- Jim, Houston, TX

View Jeff Bremer's profile

Jeff Bremer

14 posts in 1341 days

#8 posted 02-21-2018 07:38 PM

That is very nice and I second the tutorial on turquoises inlay.

View MrLaughingbrook's profile


277 posts in 3212 days

#9 posted 02-21-2018 08:05 PM

For the inlay of crushed gemstone:
0. coat with deft to protect the wood surface from the glue
1. cut a groove
2. fill with medium grit crushed stone
3. add fine grit crushed stone
4. add thin CA glue (use a very small gauge tip)
5. add medium CA glue which will flow to follow the thin (again with a small tip to prevent a mess)
6. sand and sand and sand it smooth

On this project I ended up with gaps in the gemstone which were filled with the medium CA glue. On my project under construction now, I did better.

-- MrLaughingbrook

View helluvawreck's profile


32122 posts in 4111 days

#10 posted 02-21-2018 08:40 PM

This is a very nice jewelry tray.

helluvawreck aka Charles

-- helluvawreck aka Charles,

View tyvekboy's profile


2132 posts in 4257 days

#11 posted 02-21-2018 11:40 PM

Great project. Nice results.

-- Tyvekboy -- Marietta, GA ………….. one can never be too organized

View turnkey47's profile


322 posts in 3936 days

#12 posted 02-22-2018 11:37 AM

very nice..what are the dimensions??

View MrLaughingbrook's profile


277 posts in 3212 days

#13 posted 02-22-2018 01:26 PM

Thanks for all the nice comments. Dimensions are approximately 8” x 3” x 2” Height.

-- MrLaughingbrook

View jimintx's profile


939 posts in 2829 days

#14 posted 02-22-2018 02:16 PM

I enjoy seeing the techniques you used to rout the tray out of the block. I know I would not have thought to do this that way on my own.

The way you did the bottom, leaving the integral corner feet, is also a really nice part of the tray. I can only imagine, that process must have involved some more creative jig making.

After web searching for crushed turquoise, I now know a place or two to buy it, and that it is not cheap. Look like the prices run in the range of 90 to 100 $/lb. Presumably the inlay depth can be minimized to make the material cost somewhat more reasonable.

I really appreciate the ideas this thread has provided.

-- Jim, Houston, TX

View LesB's profile


3098 posts in 4687 days

#15 posted 02-22-2018 06:21 PM

Nicely done.

Another method for hollowing the interior that may be quicker and easier that I just came across was to first slice of a bottom piece (what ever thickness you need) with a band saw. Sand both sides of the cut smooth and flat. Then use a sabre saw to rough cut the interior out and finish as you did with a template and router bit (bottom bearing trim bit). Finally glue the bottom back on. If you are careful the cut line disappears.

-- Les B, Oregon

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