The Tea Box

Been wanting to make one of these and of course try some simple laser work on the lid

Took the clues from Michael Pekovich's  box in FWW magazine for the dimensions and general inspiration.

Wood is Jatoba with maple interior.

The box sits on simple foot pads, made form Ipe

Joinery is 3/8" box with the pins about 1/16" proud of the surface and slightly rounded.
Next time I'll make them taller as I've got some ideas for jiggery to round them over with greater ease and consistency. These were done after assembly and I really didn't want to get the box sides all scratched up.

The lid was a use of "deep" (1/16") engraving for the "Tea" and the Celtic heart. Heat was filled with an epoxy/mica mix, then sanded back down to the wood.
I covered the wood with plain masking tape before lasering so the epoxy fill wouldn't get into the wood pores. The masking also lets me know when I'm getting to the box surface while sanding (100 grit in the ROS).

I'm happy with the concentration of epoxy to mica, still slightly transparent so the burned sides of the etch show through and outline the mica fill.

For the "Tea" I just left the burn in the bottom to give me the black.

Next time I'll try to think of something better for the lettering besides just "Tea" (better font choice too!)

Finished with natural Danish oil and topped with satin rattle can poly on the exterior.

Thanks for looking! 🤠


damn splint you just keep amazing me. woodwork a+ laser work a+ overall, WOW !

working with my hands is a joy,it gives me a sense of fulfillment,somthing so many seek and so few find.-SAM MALOOF.

Awesome Splint!  I love this design.  I made one a few years back and it’s a really nice blend of functionality and sexy.  The lasering gives it another dimension too.  I see uou opted out of the twisted rope latch.  Good choice.
Very Cool Splint!  all the extras really make this piece.....Well Done!!!


Another great project!  I like the insert for holding the tea.  Laser work looks so nice.  
Real nice stuff there Splint
Thank you people!!

 I see uou opted out of the twisted rope latch.  Good choice.

Yeah, I just really wanted something simple for now. Pekovich used dovetails, but I'm not ready to invest that time yet so I went with the box joint since I have a blade for it and a miter bar jig handy. Problem was it required the box to be a bit taller, but next time I might figure something out to get it a bit smaller (it's kinda big IMO)

I will probably try his wood texturing or something along those lines next time as well.

The maple was the most work, Pekovich used a shooting board, I used the router table. Took some time to dial in the part lengths. The "V" grooves are a great thing, but as with my box trays, flat bottom dados are super simple and I can measure, adjust, and cut for precision. 

I'm a huge Pekovich fan, his designs are impeccable for tables and cabinets. 
Wow - that is one of your best!
Great looking box.   Will be waiting on your jig to round proud dovetails.     


Thanks Steven!

Just trying to catch up with the tea box pros like Petey! 
John's box joints inspired me to have another go at embellishing these otherwise utility joints.
Really nice work. Super professional finish all the way around. 

Ryan/// ~sigh~ I blew up another bowl. Moke told me "I made the inside bigger than the outside".


Thanks is some good stuff there!


Everything about this project is wonderful. 
The knot the insert and I really like the raised finger joints. Did you stain them or is that just the character of the end grain?

You could probably sell a ton of these on line but I know how you like to move on and create new pieces. 

Dr. Quackner

Whoah there Hoss... at your rate of travel you'll get splinters up yout rrrs.  You may be raising the bar above inspirational into the realms of intimidation!

Just to cold spoon you, I agree there could have been a better choice for the font...  being lasered, an Old English might have been more appealing... however, it might detract from the knot, but then again it might not.

If your first cut is too short... Take the second cut from the longer end... LBD

Thakns Perey, Ryan And Dr. Q!

These are just oiled. The jatoba being tropical, will have some good end grain without getting in color issues. 

My plans for future exposed box joint fingers involves a pass over a core box bit to get a very subtle rounded groove in some wood sticks. Glue in some sanding paper and then I can round over the ends in both directions after cutting the
Next step would be to figure out a way to glue up without having to deal with squeeze-out.
I know how you like to move on and create new pieces. 
Yep, I get bored easily with most stuff. Try it, figure out the idiosyncrasies, then move on to new ways to cause myself grief 🤠
I like the proud fingers and end grain contrast. It's a lovely looking box.

Doing the best I can with what I've got

What a fantastic looking tea box. As always your work is perfect. The laser work is a great add.
GR8 JOB 😍😎👍


Another great box.  I love the pattern and personally, I like the font too.  With the elaborate inlay, a simple font is best in my book.  

--Nathan, TX. Hire the lazy man. He may not do as much work but that's because he will find a better way.

Beautiful work on the inlay
Thanks guys! 
It's a fine line for me when choosing a font. Either too plain or unreadable. Maybe I should use some old Welsh verbiage and spelling?