56. Walnut Picture Frame

We see a lot of picture frame in the movies. They are all made of wood, because wood makes a very beautiful picture frame. It’s so tempting to make one of my own.

Making picture frames can be complicated for a woodworker though. It involves other types of material for example paper, glass, etc. I tried to keep it simple using ready-to-made parts for those items.

The focus is on the wooden frame itself. I wanted it to look vintage. I picked walnut and preserved and coated with teak oil and coconut wax, the old-fashioned finishing.

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55. Remote Control Storage Case

We tend to have too many remote controls around our living room these days. You have to have one for TV, one of cable TV and maybe another one for IP TV box, not to mention the one for the air/con. It would be nice to have a storage box devoted to these remote controls to help the living room look organized.

The box was designed to house multiple remote controls as a result. I chose to install the side rail hinges for this box because it’s easy to open that way.


We were born to be happy

Epicurus is my favorite philosopher. Although he lived in ancient time, his ideas are still pretty much relevant and applicable to modern lifestyles.

For me, the core concept of his philosophy is that the purpose of life is for us to be happy while we are still alive. He argued that when we die, we do not exist. If we do not exist, we cannot feel. In other word, he did not believe in life after death. So, we should be focus solely on our present lives.

He also held that before good and evil, there were only pleasure and pain. We feel that something is good because it gives us pleasure in some way. So, our ultimate goal in life is actually to pursue pleasure (and avoid pain).

However, one shall not blindly go after pleasure, because many types of pleasure, for example, sex, drugs, unhealthy foods, etc. could bring us pain in the long run. Therefore, we have to choose pleasures wisely to maximize our happiness over the course of our lives. In fact, he recommended three primary sources of sustainable pleasures for us to rely on i.e. to live with freedom from fear and greed, to have good friendship and to live one’s life intellectually.

I love the philosophy of Epicurus so much because it does not make people feel guilty about themselves going after happiness. The first time I heard about his ideas, I felt so liberated. We can do anything as long as we know our limitations and consequences. His ideas are also rational given the fact that we still cannot prove if God exists. It just makes logical sense in its own rights and  fits nicely with modern lifestyles.



54. Extension Cord Organizer

I deliberately designed this cable management box to be in contrast with modern gadgets. It looks like a miniature of an ancient chest.



53. Display Case

There are so many possible ways to make a display case with transparency on all sides. Some are hard to do, whereas some are easy.

It took me a while to decide and eventually came up with this display case. I used the combination of mortise-tenons as well as miter joints to do the job. Arcylics were used instead of glasses.

This project is just an experiment. I just wanted to make one display case. That’s all. The finished product was used to house a vintage typewriter of mine.



Jean Paul Satre and Simone De Beauvoir‘s lifestyles

I was thrilled to learn that Jean Paul Sartre and Simone De Beauvoir read and wrote and discussed together at the cafe almost every day for forty years.

I want to have such a lifestyle. It’s so ideal for me.

Surely, no many people can afford to do that. You have to be good at writing to the extent that you have a number of audience supporting your work. Writing for forty years without readership can be frustrating. Also, you have to have a partner who get along and understand what you are doing over long period of time. Furthermore, you have to have good visions, fresh cognitive ability and strong back muscles going into old age.

That’s why I envy them so much.


52. Shaker Wall Clock/Cabinet

The design of this Shaker wall clock/cabinet was derived from the original one found in one of the Fine woodworking magazine’s collections. It was so beautiful that I reckoned I’d got to make one.

A grandmother clock is such a classic furniture. However, it’s not easy to obtain that clock movement at least around my neighborhood. I decided to turn it into a wall cabinet with a modern clock that mimicks the appearance of a grandmother clock instead.

I installed rare earth magnets to secure the cabinet doors and made a French cleat to hang the cabinet. The advantage of using French cleat was that there would be no evidence how the piece was mounted on the wall.  It’s quite a neat method. That’s all the modification I made. Other than that, I tried to make it look as original as I could.

The making of this wall cabinet allowed me to practice making frame-and-panels in which I had never done before despite the fact that I have been practicing woodworking for three years now. They turned out nicely and hence a memorable experience.

This cabinet demanded stocks of lengthy shape (10x75cm) which I seldom use. It’s hard to keep them straight along the length because of the wood movement. I had to make sure I gave them enough time to rest before start using them. Anyway they did not cause any major problems.

Nevertheless I did the back rabbet incorrectly and caused the finger joints to  look faulty. What a pity!

The making of frame-and-panels was not as tough as I anticipated. Thanks goodness. Besides I discovered that band saw came in handy when it comes to cutting tenons. The finished frame-and-panels were quite impeccable I would say.

Installing hinges seems like a trivial task. In fact, it was the step that demand highest level of patience to attain precision.