Boxguy's 200-year-old Jewelry Keeper

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Project by Boxguy posted 01-02-2013 05:20 AM 3356 views 14 times favorited 38 comments Add to Favorites Watch

Pictured: a jewelry keeper (9 3/4 x 7 1/4 x 5) featuring a sliding tray with asymmetrical dividers and a lower body with a ring holder and further dividers. The top is Maple from a burl formed on the side of a 200-year-old maple tree (hence the title). The sides and tray are Black Cherry, and the corner splines in the tray and the box are Hard Maple. This box has a mortised and custom fitted piano hinge, rubber bumpers for the tray, and a stop chain affixed with bent cup hooks. The finish is one coat Minwax Tung Oil, 3 coats of Minwax wipe-on poly, final coat of Johnson’s Paste Wax. Click on any of the blue words above and it will take you to a tutorial on that topic.

Focus: With this posting I want to again stress the importance of making internal trays, dividers, and ring storage units in jewelry boxes. Purpose-driven boxes that are designed to do a job, sell well, and are appreciated as gifts.

Philosophy: My goal is to craft long-lasting, useful objects that are a joy to touch, a pleasure to see, and a delight to use daily. While most of my boxes are for sales, I craft each one with as much care as I would put into a box for a friend or relative. Even if you are making just one or two boxes for family members I would suggest we all can strive for the same goal.

Thanks I appreciate all of you who took time to look at this posting. I especially appreciate those who take time to make comments or ask questions. Comments and questions make these postings fun for me. I will respond to comments in batches so check back on this posting to see what rejoinders and answers I give to your comments and questions. Keep boxing and keep posting.

-- Big Al in IN

38 comments so far

View Ken90712's profile


17910 posts in 4103 days

#1 posted 01-02-2013 05:32 AM

Well done, Love the colors and the splines. A real beauty!

-- Ken, "Everyday above ground is a good day!"

View a1Jim's profile


118144 posts in 4491 days

#2 posted 01-02-2013 06:08 AM

View CalgaryGeoff's profile


937 posts in 3396 days

#3 posted 01-02-2013 06:54 AM

Nice build again. I too strive for excellence on each project I make and learn from every one as well.

-- If you believe you can or can not do a thing, you are correct.

View TopamaxSurvivor's profile


19819 posts in 4590 days

#4 posted 01-02-2013 07:37 AM

Another awesome box.

-- Bob in WW ~ "some old things are lovely, warm still with life ... of the forgotten men who made them." - D.H. Lawrence

View Lee A. Jesberger's profile

Lee A. Jesberger

6872 posts in 4894 days

#5 posted 01-02-2013 08:14 AM

Hi Boxguy,

A beautiful box!

Great choice of woods.


-- by Lee A. Jesberger

View rodman40's profile


166 posts in 3242 days

#6 posted 01-02-2013 11:24 AM

Beautiful wood for a unque box, great job!

-- Rodman

View Boxguy's profile


2888 posts in 3182 days

#7 posted 01-02-2013 11:51 AM

First Set Of Replies:

Ken, thanks. The pink in the spaulted maple does pick up the pink in the cherry. I don’t know which project you posted I like best…the surfer key chain or the reeled TP.

Jim, thanks.

Geoff, thanks your projects reflect your words…you do keep striving. I didn’t see you combining some of your cutting board techniques as tops for boxes?

Topa, thanks. Good to hear from you, as always.

Lee, thanks. Your veneer work is impressive. I especially liked your demilune table project and you cabinet builds.

Rod, thanks for the high praise. Might be time to post some of your work from your Florida shop.

-- Big Al in IN

View Roger's profile


21031 posts in 3718 days

#8 posted 01-02-2013 01:16 PM

Wow again, Al. This’ll last another 200 years or more. Very detailed, very beautiful.

-- Roger from KY. Work/Play/Travel Safe. Keep your dust collector fed. [email protected]

View weav's profile


132 posts in 3282 days

#9 posted 01-02-2013 01:46 PM

Beautiful box. I love the wood colors and the shape.

-- jerry

View Dave Haynes's profile

Dave Haynes

203 posts in 4268 days

#10 posted 01-02-2013 02:05 PM

Absolutely love the box and the wood choice of the 200 year old maple burl. What I like even more (if that even would be possible) is your willingness to link to tutorials. With a recent interest in making boxes, this gives and old man like me new hope. Thanks for sharing.

-- Dave Haynes, Indiana,

View jaykaypur's profile


4017 posts in 3323 days

#11 posted 01-02-2013 02:06 PM

I really like this box and I also like the words you put in your description. Hopefully some of your tips will seep into my old head one day. You do amazing work and are an inspiration to neo-woodworkers like myself.

-- Use it up, Wear it out --------------- Make it do, Or do without!

View Blackie_'s profile


4883 posts in 3427 days

#12 posted 01-02-2013 02:16 PM

Another very nice box Big Al, always a pleasure looking at your work.

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

View dustyal's profile


1320 posts in 4390 days

#13 posted 01-02-2013 03:31 PM

I might have missed it, but have you talked about your procedure to round the corners, edges? You seem to put in a larger radius that I have done on boxes. I like the look and I should experiment, but was wondering if you had tips.

-- Al H. - small shop, small projects...

View Boxguy's profile


2888 posts in 3182 days

#14 posted 01-02-2013 03:32 PM

Second Set of Replies:

Roger, I wish this box would last another 200 years if for no other reason than it would make the title doubly ironic.

Jerry, thanks for noticing the shape. It was partially determined by the size of the burl slice, but you’re right it is pleasing.

Dave, I am glad the links are of help. I never know if they are worth the time it takes to add them in. You have been posting some very nice boxes yourself. They seem to be getting more refined as you go. Nice work.

Jay, thanks for the thoughtful reply. Your rustic builds are fun and show you have a really nice imagination and sense of what looks good. The boxes you have posted show real variety and sophistication I hope you keep at it. If I can be of any help…just ask. I have certainly had fun in the shop crafting boxes for the last three years.

Blackie, it is always a pleasure to see what you are posting as well. Good to hear from you.

-- Big Al in IN

View DocSavage45's profile


9023 posts in 3757 days

#15 posted 01-02-2013 04:11 PM

Al, Looking at masterful craftsmanship I have comr up with a Mantra. It’s for me but it may help others? 3P’s Patience, Perseverance, and Precision. I am working on the first and last P’s. Looks like all 3 here? Have you considered a chest? Wabi-Sabi.

-- Cau Haus Designs, Thomas J. Tieffenbacher

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