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2-in-1 stool

I love woodworking projects with creative features. This one is 2-in-1 stools which can be used as a ladder. It is perfect for an apartment with limited space.

It was not my own design though. I found this on the internet. The design is quite perfect, so I decided not to modify it at all. Here you go the 2-in-1 stools.

 

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Attention to details – Cherry chopstick box with Walnut lid

This new design of chopstick box empathizes on details. The bottom is chamfered and recessed to create small shadow beneath the box. Cherry and walnut are working in combination to create a unique look. The item is preserved with 100% food safety oil and coated with bee wax.

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This month I decided to also bought 400 pieces of custom-made conjugated boxes so that products will be shipped in the box that matches the dimensions better. Based on the current speed of selling, it would takes me 4-5 years to use up all the boxes. So, it is kind of crazy to do this, not to mention, the new business cards.

All these attempts were done to improve the products and services of my Etsy shop the best I could. Attention to details would be the new motto in the next phase of my Etsy shop.

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Design is a mystical subject – Paper trays

Design is mystical. Sometime it is just a matter of a few centimeter of difference in dimensions that turn an ugly piece into a sleek one.

For this particular piece, I did nothing different from the previous version except for narrowing down the height of the tray. They mystically look very much improved.

One of the secrets to fine woodworking I also discovered from this project was to abstain from thinking of the entire process while working on the task at hand. Do every step as if it is the only step required for the finishing goods. Regard every step as equally important. This includes maintenance steps such as sharpening chisels. At the end when you put everything together for the final piece, you will be amazed at the outcome.

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The protruding finger joinery

One valuable lesson I got from this project was to hand plane the stocks before cut them to length. This way if there were cracks during hand planing which normally occurs at the rims. They will be eliminated by cutting to length afterwards.

 

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Every woodworker has his favorite medium of finishing.

Too many media of finishing are available out there for woodworkers to choose from. They all have pros and cons. They all have their place depending on the situations at hand.

Anyway, every woodworker has his favorite medium of finishing, the one to rely on in most cases. Recently, I reckoned it’s time for me to have one, too. So I spent time experimenting with them to arrive at the final decision.

To begin with, I crossed out polyurethanes without hesitation. Despite its great protection, they look so artificial. I love to make furniture from woods, because of their natural appearances.

In this regard, to use just oil and wax is considered the most natural. It’s also the best finishing medium in the long run. However, it’s hard to find good wax in my country. So, I have to forget oil and wax.

I experimented with varnish. They say varnish is very common in the old day, plus it provides relatively great protection, perhaps second only to polyurethanes. However, we have to wait as long as one day between each varnish coat. so it might not be the greatest medium to use regularly.

I also experimented with shellac. It’s recommended by many pros as the best finishing medium of all. Shellac is very natural, because it’s made of insect secretion. It’s very fast to apply and also preserve the natural appearances of the wood quite well. However, due to the fact that we apply shellac to the wood by padding with cotton cloth. Sometime it is hard not to leave any mark at all on the finished surface.

In the end, I went for lacquer. It has best of both worlds in all aspects. It might not give as greatest protection as varnish or polyurethanes but it does not look too artificial either. It dries as fast as 15 minutes between coats. The fact that you can apply lacquer by spraying make it easy to apply nicely. It is definitely the best medium for me considering the kinds of projects that I usually do.

To prepare the wood before applying lacquer, I sand the piece to 320 grit and clean the surface vigorously with tissue paper. Beyond that, I don’t see any improvement on the final product. I then spray the lacquer 5-6 layers by waiting for 30 minutes between layers. I am not a big fan of lacquer sealer since I notice no difference using it or not. Before the final coat, I like wait for 2 days for complete curing and then smooth out the surface with 400-600 grit sandpaper. The surface can look ugly after sanding but don’t worry. It would look great again after the final coat.

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71. The Shaker-style Coat Hanger

This shaker-style coat hanger is probably the largest item I have ever built to put on sales at Etsy. The design was based on the previous coat hanger I built for my own use with many improvements. Isn’t it good to have such a storage shelf at your front door to store your personal belongings such as mobile phone, wallet, keychains and coins? I hope everyone would like it as much as I do.

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70. Bedside Organizer

This project was meant to be experimental. It’s the first time I use maple on my Etsy shop. Frankly I don’t like it very much after all. It didn’t look classy as I thought it would be. I would probable stick to cherry as primary wood for my future projects.

Anyway, beauty is in the eyes of the beholders. Others might like it. So, I have placed it on my Etsy shop and see how it turns out.