A Small Woodturning Project You Can Whip Up This Week

When describing woodturning to someone “browsing around” for a new hobby, one of the first points I like to make is that it is possible to create a finished piece in an evening or Saturday.

The turned box below is a good example of one of many small woodturning projects that can be completed in just one session. This project is admittedly more suitable for a turner capable of using the bevel as a guide when making interrupted cuts, but it is worthy project for a novice turner who’s up for a challenge. Creating job-specific jamb chucks for final steps defies detection of any means of work holding to the casual viewer.

Turned box with lines inspired by Oriental architecture.

Turned box with lines inspired by Oriental architecture.


In the above example, my inspiration was informed by classic Oriental architecture. I have an affinity for the sweeping roof lines seen in many older buildings as well as the often solitary gates seen in gardens or entrances to enclosures. I enjoy contrasts and surprises, so chose to make the body with black walnut then ebonize it to make it almost black. The black walnut contrasts nicely with the very light yellow cedar lid. The gold leaf in the bowl form offers a surprise when you open the lid. The body and handle compliment one another and reflect the sweeping lines of roofs and gates to work together to imply a feeling of comfort.

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