The Ring Box
An old friend I haven’t talked to in years reached out to me about a custom ring box. He was getting everything ready to propose to his girlfriend and wanted something unique. He said as long as it held the ring and would fit in his pocket, I could let my mind go wild with the design. This is the best kind of commission. Size constraints were given, and I had creative freedom. Some constraints are a very good thing. It makes me have to problem solve but not too much where there is no room for creativity.
I wanted to use a nice dense exotic hardwood with closed pores. They tend to ‘machine’ the best and easily obtain a glass smooth finish in the end with the right work. With that in mind, I grabbed a piece of Bubinga I had. I also used some thin strips of Purpleheart and Maple that I had laying around from a previous project to add some panache.
My wife is quite crafty and did an amazing job on the inside. I have received many comments “What kind of magic is this?!”. She used felt paper and very carefully crafted folds to have the ring store flat but turn 90 degrees when the box is opened to present the ring. She didn’t invent this, we stumbled across @measuredworkshop on Instagram that had it done which was the inspiration.
The only hardware in the box is four miniature rare-earth magnets that hold the box closed. The boxes hinge is the layers of specialty paper that line the inside. This might sound like a weak point, but with how she has it layered and reinforced in specific spots, it should be able to handle many uses in stride.
Before my wife took over with the inside, I finished the outside of the box. This was to ensure the finish didn’t mar up the felt paper that would be on the inside and edge. I used an amber shellac, followed by grain filler and more shellac. Finally, I applied three coats of a urethane top-coat, sanding with 400, 600, and then 800 grit before each respective coat. The result was a glass smooth finish on the box that is durable and makes the grain pop visually.
- General Finishes Salad Bowl Finish (Amazon)
- Premium Felt Paper (Amazon)
- Grain Filler (Amazon)
- Amber De-Waxed Shellac Flakes (Amazon)
- Norton Wet/Dry Sandpaper (Amazon)
- Preppin Weapon Sanding Block (Amazon)
- 3M Super77 Spray Adhesive (Amazon)