The Handsome & Co Educational Taster: HANDSOME OVAL BOX

The Handsome & Co Educational Taster: HANDSOME OVAL BOX

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Every term, in effort to enlighten and engage students to a new process in woodworking, the tutors take it in turns to develop an ‘Educational Taster’ (hopefully a better name coming soon, maybe). In previous terms students have been presented with insightful projects, such as the production of a wooden try square, utilizing shooting boards and following this a mallet, intended to instruct a through wedged mortise and tenon.

Most recently, steam bending was on the agenda, with all students undertaking an abridged version of the ‘Oval Shaker Box’.

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Primarily, we wanted individuals to focus on the steam bending process and enjoy the remarkable and almost magical affects of steam bending. Secondary to this, students will have a product at the end, an open box to store their trinkets, hold some ‘do-vilackies’, put some ‘bits n bobs’ in and or just house some stuff.

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Yes, the exercise was modeled off of the very traditional and ever-popular “Oval Shaker Box”, but we know this isn’t a shaker box. This particular exercise is only half the traditional shaker box (without a lid), and it was completed in less than half of the time needed to make its conventional cousin. Due to time limitations in the nature of the H & Co “Education Taster”, an abridged version of the shaker box was attempted in as little as 3 hours.

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In the process of designing this ‘taster’ and presenting to our students, we cut some corners, which I am sure, would make, even the mildest enthusiasts and traditionalists cringe… But, as an introduction to steam bending and in effort to streamline our efforts towards a product in a limiting allotted time, it is a perfect appetizer that may or may not whet the appetite of those participating to try making an actual shaker box in the future.

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There is something fun and almost mischievous about deconstructing a traditional product and trying to achieve it in a shorter period of time. It was and is a challenging undertaking, that will not replace the established and proven success of the ‘shaker box’, but we don’t mind, so we’re calling it the unconventional…

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…THE HANDSOME OVAL BOX

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see more pictures here

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