Sunday, October 16, 2011

Wedding reception box for our nephew Brandon and his new wife Sarah.

When there is a wedding in our family my wife always asks me to make a box for the reception. The box is designed to hold cards from the guests for the bride and groom. After the wedding the box is big enough to hold memorabilia from the wedding. I try to come up with a unique design for each one.

For Brandon and his wife Sarah I built a box out of birdseye maple and blood wood. The bottom and sides are held in place with pinned through tenons shown in the picture below. I always decorate the box with scrolled embellishments, in this case their names and the date of the wedding. This box is 16 inches long 8 inches deep and 9.5 inches tall. The top has a slot to accept the cards from the guests.

The wedding was last month but because of the location of the wedding the reception was delayed until today. It's 1:30 am as I write this and I'm hoping the finish cures in time for for the reception. It's dry but still has the odor of the spray acrylic. It usually takes about 24 hours to cure completely so I'm pushing this one.

Close up of the pinned through tenon.

If you look closely at the picture above you can see the chatoyancy of the grain in this birdseye maple. In person it looks like a gem stone and has a very 3D appearance. Birdseye maple is one of my favorite woods to look at but it can be difficult handle. It's very easy to get tear out when running it through a planner. For a good finish you absolutely have to run through several grits of sandpaper. I sanded this one to 320 grit and could have gone further but i did not have time.

I cut the tenons and holes for the pins with the scroll saw. The scroll saw is not the most accurate to for this job but I did this for a reason. Using the scroll saw leaves an imperfect tenon which looks more rustic. It has a very hand made look which I like without being sloppy. The pins are more decorative than functional. They do help hold things tight but most the the holding power is the glue.

The box is finished with lemon oil and several coats of spray acrylic.

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