Men's Valet Box

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Project by CaptainKlutz posted 06-11-2019 05:18 PM 1811 views 5 times favorited 9 comments Add to Favorites Watch

High School graduation gift for my son. :)

Design was created from random parts of valet tray and boxes that looked most functional as I surfed the internet for plans. Ended up with no plans; started with 12” wide piece of 4/4 walnut, cut finger joints in 12×15x3 box, and then added drawers, trays, cell phone holder, and watch bar. :)

Drawer front is Leopard wood, drawer sides are curly maple scraps, with plywood bottom covered in self adhesive wool felt cloth.
Trays on top were created using template(s) and router with 1.25” OD bowl bit.
Cell phone holder was made from a couple pieces of 8/4 walnut cut to shape on band saw, with watch bar attached to side via mortise & tenon.
Base was made separate from box, and contains a hidden drawer. Sides of base are some scrap 8/4 Tiger wood (ran out of 8/4 Walnut) machined with ogee foot router bit.
Hidden drawer (10wx8dx1H) in the back has touch latch (Photo #5 shows base/latch). Push the draw in 1/4” and it pops out far enough to remove it. Draw fit was not perfect, so it ended up in back instead of front? :-)

Made the box several months ago, when I had the box joint blade set up on table saw for some drawers in router cabinet. Walnut box sat idle for several months waiting for other projects to get done. When May arrived and no progress had been made, it became a priority to finish. Have more time invested in ‘design as you go’ method used, tray templates, and drawer tuning, then actual construction. Box was assembled with 30 min epoxy with 1 drop of Transtint Coffee Brown dye. It helped to hide some less than perfect gaps in the joints.

Finish schedule:
Inside of drawer box was pre-finished with 2 coats of poly before glue up. My klutz hands were to big to fit in that tiny space. :)
Grain fill walnut with Crystalac
All of the Walnut was toned to consistent color with 1:5 dilution of Behlen’s American Walnut Solar Lux dye stain
Toned the orange-ish Tiger wood with some Transtint Coffee Brown dye to make it match walnut.
4 coats of Arm-R-Seal semi-gloss
Buffed out finish with some carnauba wax.

My apologies for the less than perfect pictures. It was 99% done when pictures were taken.
Took these pictures before shop scuffs/scratches were buffed out of Arm-R-Seal finish. Immediately after buff out/wax, it disappeared into my son’s bedroom before I get some pictures minus the embarrassing Klutz defects. It’s full of stuff now, I am not getting it back unless it breaks.

Thanks for looking, and Have a great day!

Here are some more construction and finishing pictures:
Testing size of base against box before assembly:

Can see exacly why I had to tone the different wood shades with dye!

Initial drawer assembly:

Better Picture of top trays and different lighting that shows wood grain more:

The box was made from single board, and grain defects wrap all way around the box. :)

-- If it wasn't for bad luck, I wouldn't have no luck at all, Doom, despair, agony on me… - Albert King - Born Under a Bad Sign released 1967

9 comments so far

View Jerry's profile


3496 posts in 2928 days

#1 posted 06-11-2019 06:59 PM

This is really beautiful, well conceived and executed. Nice Job!!

-- 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 pottz's profile


21235 posts in 2264 days

#2 posted 06-11-2019 07:08 PM

beautiful valet,love your wood combo,a great gift for an upcoming young man.nice work cap’n.

-- working with my hands is a joy,it gives me a sense of fulfillment,somthing so many seek and so few find.-SAM MALOOF.

View Ivan's profile


17043 posts in 4147 days

#3 posted 06-12-2019 04:33 AM

Everything on it’s place and on hand…nice box set

-- Ivan, Croatia, Wooddicted

View KettleWorkshop's profile


40 posts in 921 days

#4 posted 06-12-2019 04:36 AM

Very nice work!
I would have loved one of those when I went to college.

-- If you don't throw out the original design at least 2 times, you aren't finding all the imperfections.

View Rick  Dennington's profile

Rick Dennington

7175 posts in 4474 days

#5 posted 06-12-2019 05:35 AM

Capt. Klutz,

Stellar job on the man’s valet. Great use of different woods. beautiful job. I figure your son will be very proud of his gift, especially since “dad” made it for him.

-- " There's a better way.....find it"...... Thomas Edison.

View Peteybadboy's profile


4141 posts in 3229 days

#6 posted 06-12-2019 10:48 AM

Great gift and nice work!

-- Petey

View JADobson's profile


1449 posts in 3391 days

#7 posted 06-12-2019 03:21 PM

Lovely piece. Well done.

-- No craft is very far from the line beyond which is magic. -- Lord Dunsany — Instagram @grailwoodworks

View CaptainKlutz's profile


5013 posts in 2774 days

#8 posted 06-12-2019 05:11 PM

Thank you all for kind comments! Added some additional construction pictures. :)

-- If it wasn't for bad luck, I wouldn't have no luck at all, Doom, despair, agony on me… - Albert King - Born Under a Bad Sign released 1967

View therealSteveN's profile


9194 posts in 1854 days

#9 posted 06-12-2019 06:03 PM

That Leopardwood drawer front goes BANG.

Nice box

-- Think safe, be safe

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