In furtherance of playing catch-up, I must mention winning the Popular Woodworking Magazine “Excellence in Woodworking” award in 2013 for this veneered chest. I was taken by surprise at the admiration by the readers, judges and editors of the magazine. Winning the award came with an all-expenses paid trip to WIA 2014 in Winston-Salem, North Carolina.
I built this chest at the request of a disabled Gulf War veteran who needed it specially to hold her medications. She needed the box to lock, but because of her disabilities, she was unable to hold a small key; therefore, I had to devise a lock that would be hidden from the curious hands of her young nieces and nephews yet be easy for her to access. A woodworking friend from across the country designed the hidden lock, and I made it out of brass, carefully hiding it behind the center of the mother-of-pearl flower on the front.
Also specific to this box is a large handle made of ebony and mother of pearl in the middle of the tray, making it easier for the owner to grasp.
This chest was made with a dovetailed maple core and covered inside and out with hide-glue-affixed cherry veneer that I cut from cherry lumber. The spectacularly figured cherry on the outside came from a single board that had been waiting in my wood shed for just the right application. I made the inlay banding out of cherry, holly, and ebony, and hand-cut the mother-of-pearl and abalone inlays.