Sunday, March 31, 2013

My second project: A toy-box for Leah.

Having a toddler means sacrificing floor space for dolls, fake food, tea pots, blankets, puzzles, books and whatever else she decides to play with.  We figured this should be the next project since an unorganized, cluttered space is too messy.  I'm a "bins-and-labels" person so disorder can sometimes cause unneeded stress.

I searched the internet for ideas on toy-boxes but came up short.  Everything I found was either too simplistic or too complex.  Having a design in mind, I jotted down some ideas until I had a solid winner.  With limited woodworking experience and the addition of a table saw to my workshop, being flexible was important to the success.  I stuck to my plans for about 75% of the build and adjusted as I went along.

The whole toy-box is made from Aspen wood (unfortunately that's the only stuff we have around here that doesn't cost a fortune) bought from a local home improvement store.  The total cost for wood and stain was $150.  The "stay-open" hinges, purchased at Woodcraft, were an additional $13.  From start-to-finish, the project took approximately 12 hours spread over a month's time.  I learned a couple new techniques such as groove joinery for the bottom and half-lap joints for the base and top trim work.  I also learned to buy specialty hinges before you begin the build.  Changing the design after the fact sucks.

Overall, this was a fun project and I gained some useful skills.  I hope Leah can use it well beyond it's "toy-box" years...

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