Build a Dovetailed Box

Learn some new woodworking skills or use the ones you have to make this unique box for storing knick-knacks or keepsakes.

| June 2018


Woodworker’s Techniques Handbook by Paul Forrester, is a useful tool for any woodworking beginner. Learn about the tools you will use and basic woodworking skills needed for the trade. Try a variety of projects from beginner to advanced, and find what works best for you. This excerpt is located in the chapter, “Practical Applications.”

Dovetailed box Precision marking and cutting are more important than ever when making small objects, because our eyes are drawn to look closely at joints, the way things are put together and the detailing. This box is made with through dovetailing, which acts as both a structural and visual feature. Only a small quantity of wood is needed for small items like this, so take the opportunity to choose an exciting and exotic wood. The prototype is made of yew because, although it is difficult to work, it has a lovely appearance.


Tool list

  • Sash clamps
  • Pencil; steel rule; marking knife; try square; marking gauge; mortise gauge
  • Panel saw; dovetail saw; coping saw
  • Jack or smoothing plane; block plane
  • Power router, or rebate plane or shoulder plane and hand router
  • Small bevel-edged chisels
  • Nail punch
  • Cabinet scraper; sandpaper and sanding block

Cutting list

No.                                        Sawn                                                                     Planed

2 long sides               190 x 85 x 20mm(7-1⁄2 x 3-1⁄2 x 3⁄4in)            180 x 75 x 12mm(7 x 3 x 1⁄2in)



February 15-16, 2020
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