My wife asked me to make a storage tray that can be stacked on top of her sewing storage boxes. The storage tray holds her cross stitch needles, floss, scissors, etc. needed for her current project (but could be used for other tools). The storage tray and storage boxes are grouped together and moved from room-to-room on a small dolly. Her specifications were to make it look nice and add some fancy handles that look like the handles to the cake testers (see Homemade Cake Tester).
Here is my interpretation of her specifications. Everything was made from my piles of scrap wood from other wood mill work projects. I have boxes and boxes of scraps of long wood parts with rectangular sections left-over from mill wood that were just too perfect to throw away (but never seem to be reused). The tray was made from red oak and a 12” x 16” x 3/16” section of oak veneered plywood.
The oak tray sides are ¾” x 2” in cross section, cut a dado of 3/16” x 3/16” to fit the plywood tray bottom, and with mitered corners cut on the table saw. The side handles are 3/8” and ¼” diameter stainless steel T-303 rod, 21 pitch knurls, and threaded for 6-32 screws (I had bought on eBay a box full of stainless steel 1’ long 6-32 round head hex screws for another project). The handles are press fit into the ¾” high knurled stanchions. The wood was finished with a spray can of Deft Interior Clear Wood Finish Semi-Gloss Lacquer (my favorite for this type of work). The bottom of the tray is recessed to fit over the top of the storage box.
My wife uses this cross stitch sewing tray almost every day. She had a great idea for further improvements and additions to the tray. She uses a red pencil to mark her cross stitch patterns to indicate completed stitches as the cross stitch work progresses and needed a place where the pencil would be handy. In addition she uses fine-tip scissors for cutting-off the floss from the back side upon completing a section. Again, she needed a place where the scissors would be handy and easy to pick up and returned to the storage tray. Her ideas and designs are shown in the photos below. I made the parts from 303 stainless steel rod.
The ball-shaped end on the stainless steel was roughed out with a 3/8" square HSS tool blank I ground to shape using the corner of the wheel on a bench grinder and finish rounding with a Dremel circular stone. The final ball-shape was clean-up with a fine file and then the 1/8" diameter stem was machined to size and cut off on the lathe.
Thanks for looking,
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