Gift | Project | Holiday | Spoon | Cutting Board


Favorite Gift Projects Shared

Following from his query about favorite kitchen projects, last week Rob wondered about other gifts you’ve made that have earned kudos. Several of you share these. – Editor

“Last year I made charcuterie boards for my four sister-in-laws, and they were thrilled! One displays it in her living room, and another made a heavy cloth sack to store it. I don’t have any pictures of them, but they were simple maple and walnut glue-ups with wooden handles attached to the ends. In addition, each board had two circular depressions for condiment bowls I purchased.” – Ken Bayer

“These are very popular with my family and friends. I call them sperm spoons.” Tom Giacchina

“Gave the first (cutting board) to family and showed it to friends. Now I’m making these other three for my friends!” – Tracy Novak

“Great idea Rob — a naked appeal for gift ideas. I like this plan, and I’m proud to be part of it. I’m planning to make clocks for some in the family. I built this mantle clock to gage the degree of difficulty. However, my wife immediately claimed this one for herself and put it on our mantle. And yes, I know this does not get me off the Christmas hook (so to speak) on the home front. This model, made from a set of published plans I found, probably requires an intermediate skill set, but it is very satisfying when complete. It’s made of sapelle and finished with Watco Danish Oil. It also forced me to finally make a zero-clearance insert for my table saw so I could cut the tiny pieces of quarter round needed to hold the glass in place. Anyway, I am definitely looking forward to the issue with everyone else’s ideas, because I need them as much as you do.” – Mike Reslie

“I made an art box for my grandson last year. I used red cedar and paulownia in an optical illusion cutting board style pattern. The pattern flows around all six sides. This is side grain rather than end grain. It is about 12 x 14 x 4 inches. I lined it with thin oak to add strength. It took two months to make, and there is never going to be another one.” – Herb Brodie

“The most re-requested item I ever made en masse for family members was plant stands. Usually a pair for each individual. They were 3/4” birch plywood, 12” square and 24” tall. All the corners were mitered, no bottoms, just triangle blocks to brace the bottom corners. Glued and pin nailed. Spray-varnished with two coats. Looked pretty good, if I do say so myself. The pictures are not digital, so if that changes I’ll send one. I enjoy your articles and the magazine. Especially the crossword puzzle.” – Frank Clements


“Here are some of the gifts I’ve made for Christmas and other occasions.”  Lee Bernardo


“Our Rochester Woodcarving Club supports a local charity whose fundraising includes an annual Festival of Trees. Each year, we decorate one of the trees (both on and under) with more than 200 handmade wooden decorations. Along with our tree raising significant money, people come back each year to see what new creations we have made. For the tree, I frequently carve small (1″ to 1 1/2″) book-shaped ornaments. Matching the theme of the tree (e.g., Teddy Bear Picnic, Mother Goose), I locate photos of vintage book covers. These are cleaned up, printed and attached as the ornament’s front cover. Often there is an added challenge like finding the duplicate book on the tree. I also make sets of gingerbread men ornaments out of 1/4″ walnut. A bit of carving on the edges and some puffy fabric paint make realistic cookies. Folks always smile when they come across one hanging by one leg upside down.” – Mike Snyder

“I enjoy mixing two hobbies together, woodworking and pottery. This snack tray was made by laminating oak strips, routing three spaces for resting hand-thrown dishes and finishing by adding handles. I made four different versions by using different style handles. Your readers can view the full build on YouTube or my website by searching ‘Early Riser Workshop Snack Tray.’ Thanks for allowing us to share our creations.” – Earl Griffis





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