Shoeshine Boxes (that are not shoeshine boxes)

If you happen to watch Woodwoorking for Mere Mortals on Youtube, you know that last year Steve Ramsey (he hosts the series) did an irregular series of videos in which he led a neophyte woodworker through creating a shoeshine box.  They made it out of pine boards, edge joined, using simple joinery.  In the end, the project is mostly basic, which is why it’s being done on a program called Woodworking for Mere Mortals.

Now, I don’t watch the show because I need help with woodworking, or anything like that.  As I said, the box was basic. 

But, what I liked was the box itself.  The simple way it came together, and the way it could be adapted.  So, after picking up the free plans for the project, I decided to make three of them out of birch project panels.  These panels may not have the color I like to them, but they are stable, easy to work with, and perfect for this project.

Naturally, while I used similar hardware and hinges, and kept the construction simple — just rabbets joints, brass screws, and glue — I changed things up a little bit, pushing the dimensions a little bit off script, but not far.  I also made my set of three with two trays in the top, instead of one.  Then, because this was not a shoeshine box any longer, I needed handles, so I made some simple handles from leather strapping I have.

One of my boxes not holds my leather supplies and needs a little embellishment.  In the photos above you can see I used some leather scraps to line the bottom of the trays, and I’m probably going to add some to the lid — after all, just because they’re made from plywood doesn’t mean they can’t be fancy.  I also need to do a little bit of prettying up the other boxes, which to this point are empty and unclaimed.  I’m not sure about selling them, because they are heavy and solid and will cost a bit to ship, but I suppose if anybody has any real interest, I’ll listen.

If you feels like buying something smaller, see my etsy store.  Otherwise, peace.

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