The Flat Stuff Gallery


This gallery is to show that my passion for working with timber isn't exclusively wood turning.




I wanted to get rid of a ratty old wicker chair my other half used in the bedroom to put PJ's, pillows etc on which meant coming up with something better so this bench seat / rack idea was formed. It has a narrower footprint so I'm not getting tangled in the broken canes any more but has more space and is strong enough to actually sit on while getting shoes on etc. All made from Sally Wattle and 76 dominos!


The Gallery looked naked without a jewellery cabinet in it so I put this one together from a single turning blank of nicely figured Emu Apple. The doors and back are veneered to resolve any timber movement issues down the track while the rest is all solid timber. The 'legs' and drawer bodies are made from Scrub Leopardwood. The mitre joinery is reinforced with thin 'slip-feathers' of Norfolk Island Hibiscus which I also used for the drawer and door handles.
Inside there are four drawers, a slide-out ring tray, slide-out necklace rack plus earring racks on the backs of the doors.
The ring-tray is 'stopped' so it can't be accidentally pulled out too far unless you know the trick to remove it fully which reveals a hidden compartment.
Update 9/6/2022. Managed to score Overall Champion with the cabinet at our local show -  pretty happy with that!


Not my usual style but who can say no to a daughter-in-law! (Client is ALWAYS right!) Made from 40mm SHS painted black and some Sally Wattle with hints of the sapwood showing to lighten it up a little.


I wanted to try something a little different from standard boxes regarding grain direction and these two were the result. To overcome the issue of wood movement, the back and drawer front are veneered onto some Jacaranda, while the lid is solid timber as it has room to move. Keeping the line of grain meant a bit of fiddling and no room for error during the cutting stages but they worked out nicely I think.
This one is from local timbers. Acacia julifera for the sides with Milkwood for the lid/back and drawer front.
The second has Rose-mahogany for the sides and Camphor laurel for the lid/back and drawer front.


I finally got time to build a replacement for our computer desk in similar style to my entertainment unit and corner cabinet on this page. Again using Rose Mahogany for the build, I re-used the black glass top from our old desk which goes well with the mesh inserts. I wanted to keep it light and airy with a 'floating' cabinet like the entertainment unit and also tried to make sure it would look OK from the back if it wasn't against a wall. The back of the cabinet has a mesh panel to allow it to breathe and avoid the gas build-up that causes many Rose Mahogany items to 'gum up'!
On this project I decided to go with 'push to open' drawers using some beautifully figured Rose Mahogany I have been putting aside for something special . . . and my hand-cut dovetails are improving considerably!
The finished product looks so much like the SketchUp view of my design that I just had to add this pic.
Drop me a line through the feedback page if you would like a copy of the plan.


Some boxes from a batch I made to take to the Maleny Wood show that COVID cancelled. I put together a rig to have a shot at the 'Lichtenburg fractals' though I prefer to call it 'Bonsai Lightning'!
This one is from Red Cedar.
The lids are all from Jacaranda which 'burns' really well with Borax as the conductive solution.
Mackay Cedar on the left, Peltophorum on the right.
Southern Silky Oak on the left, Red Cedar on the right.


Our Woodworkers Group got an order for a box to act as a wishing-well / /keepsake box for an upcoming wedding and the workshop was a bit too hectic to get it done there so I completed them in my own shed.
Both boxes are made from Sally Wattle with Norfolk Island Hibiscus mitre keys. I 'butterflied' the sides to give the appearance of continuous grain flow around the boxes and finished them with Kunos oil. The boxes are 260 x 350 x 160 mm high.


Had to show this one off - very difficult to get it to show in photos but this Peltophorum pterocarpum timber I picked up in Emerald a while back is loaded with fiddleback. The entire log has it to some degree and it's a very easy-working timber that has been planted all over Emerald for decades. Also known as Yellow Flametree or Yellow Jacaranda by the locals.


For our 2020 Club Challenge, we all received one 70x70mm length, and 2 lengths of 50x100mm Bloodwood to create what ever we liked. I stumbled on to the Infinity cube idea while looking at Hall tables online and couldn't resist having a go at it.
I scaled the project to use as an end table which used up all the 50x100mm Bloodwood and is a real test of accuracy in squaring things up. I have included a couple of perspex rods under the back corner to take some of the spring out of it even though it does support itself OK - wouldn't like to see what happens if somebody sits on it though!!!
I still had the 70x70mm piece to use up so I  went for a matching lamp with a few adjustments to the maths. I have inset some high-density LED strip lights into the underside of the top square which are probably brighter than necessary but there was a bit of guesswork involved in designing that part.
To top it off, I didn't want an ugly switch sticking out of it, nor did I want one of those in-line switches in the lead so I purchased a tiny touch-sensor circuit board and embedded it above the LED strip with a brass and stainless steel contact plate flush with the top surface.
The switch works so well you only have to wave your finger near it to switch it on and off.


I made this Rose Mahogany (NSW Rosewood) entertainment unit to replace my 1980's Marantz stereo cabinet that had seen better days. I'm using a similar theme on all my furniture for the living area as you can see in the Corner cabinet further down this page. The mesh on the doors and drawer fronts has a cloth backing glued to it to blank the view and allow air-flow, but I like the 'shadow' effect of the mesh in the end panels - texture without bulk!
Very happy with the way it finished up - don't mind looking at it every evening at all! I particularly like the effect of the 'floating' cabinet which I think works well on this piece.
I design most of my flat projects in Sketchup (standalone 2017 version) so if you would like a copy of the plans, just drop me a note on my feedback page.


A commissioned chest made from Budgeroo and White Bauhinia that is to be used as a 'time-capsule' that will be on open display rather than buried. The Bauhinia was used in the lid to represent the village of Bauhinia to which the chest is connected.


I used my spindle moulder to shape the curve on the Sally Wattle and Scrub Leopardwood in these cutting boards in an attempt to give it a 'wave' illusion - they ended up looking OK but the illusion just didn't happen - something to do with the growth rings I suspect.


What's left of a batch of Business card pocket boxes. Made from various Central Highlands timbers, they are designed to be used as a display stand as well.
On the left is one in Emu Apple (closed) and on the right another made from Beefwood (open display mode).


Tried my hand at some 'hidden' wooden hinges on some document boxes. They worked OK and look alright but I won't bother doing any more as they feel flimsy, require lid stays, and cannot be removed if the box requires refinishing - I like to make things that can be maintained so they will be around long after I've turned to dust! If I were to do more I would take the time to match the dowel material to the box but these were just an experiment.
This one is from Emu Apple with a Budgeroo lid.
This one is made from Qld Myrtle with a White Cedar lid.
At right is the very simple 'jig' I made on the mini-metal lathe to drill the dowels dead centre for the brass pins in the hinges.


My daughter was looking for a planter-stand for her new pet plant to put in a place I always thought needed a hall-stand instead so we compromised and I managed to get it finished just in time for her birthday. Decided to use some African Mahogany I scored in a trade many years ago and added details in Australian Ebony and inlay cut from a piece of Box Elder burl.
This project was also my first shot at hand-cut dovetails and inlaying veneer - and as long as you don't count the two drawer sides I trashed in the process, it worked out pretty well I thought!! 
In-situ with that whopping big pot-plant in place.


Finally got around to making something for myself! A 'life' cabinet to go in the corner near the dining table to house all the odds and ends of daily life. Made from Rose-mahogany (Dysoxylum fraseranum) with security mesh inserts in the drawer fronts and doors - had to add a black backing to get the effect I wanted as the mesh isn't dense enough on it's own. The legs were shaped on the router rather than the lathe so I could leave flat areas for the joinery. The handles were turned so the lathe at least got a brief look-in on the project!


Noticed my other-half struggling with a cutting board to put the hot cookware on so I thought it was about time I came up with some trivets for her . . . Left: Sally Wattle with Norfolk Island Hibiscus keys. Right: White Cypress with Sally Wattle keys.


At just 15 years of age my grandson was using his hairdresser mums cut-throat razor to shave. Mum decided he should have his own but it came with a plastic handle - Poppy to the rescue! Ringed Gidgee with brass pins . . . .
. . . . and then his younger sister decided to revamp her room so Poppy had another job! Hexagonal shelves made from Klinki Pine with masonite backings - no finish applied as per the clients instructions!


My youngest boy and his wife asked for some dark coloured, 'His & Hers' cutting boards. Sally Wattle seemed the best choice for a dark colour and I used some Bitter Bark for the detail. (Note: The 'L' reads correct from either side but I don't think they've noticed yet!) Unfortunately they have apparently buckled a little since so the Sally Wattle might be a bit unstable to use for the entire board!
And shortly after delivering those boards I realised the other offspring didn't have a decent cutting-board between them so I put this batch together from Budgeroo, Bitter Bark and a tiny bit of Sally Wattle.


Sally Wattle box made as my entry in our club challenge competition. See how it was done here!


An end-grain cutting board from Bitter bark, Sally wattle and Rose Mahogany (Dysoxylum fraserianum).


A collectors cabinet from Kauri pine with Desert Oak trim. Made to house the extensive essential oil collection of my favorite client in New York (who just happens to have a mutual passion for scented timbers!)
The bottles the oils are in range from 3cm to 9cm high, hence the 3 lift-out trays in some of the 10cm high drawers. Very happy with this project even if it took four times longer than I expected!


Mantle skeleton clock from Bluegum burl. Very happy with this design, as was the recipient on graduating with an Engineering degree. Hard to give wooden clocks a contemporary feel. The clock sleeve was turned from Emu Apple.


A cutting board from Buloke and natural edged Gidgee. Heavy little sucker with Gidgee being in about the top 10 heaviest timbers known and Buloke being the hardest timber ever Janka tested (but not necessarily the hardest timber possible). Shouldn't dent this one in a hurry!


A cutting board from Sally Wattle with some laminations through it just to have a shot at the technique. Quite effective even if it is a bit time consuming for a simple cutting board.


Our local clubs challenge for 2014 was to make something from a billet of Klinki Pine measuring 200 x 100 x 700mm so I designed and built this Jewellery Dresser. Just working out the cutting plan was a challenge in itself!!!!
  Also challenged myself on this piece in that I had not tried doing bent laminations before (drawer front), hadn't done any inlay before (mirror-box supports) and hadn't even heard of 'Flame polishing' the perspex used for the earring racks.
The mitre-keys and trimmings are all from Australian Ebony and the mirror-box supports are removable so the whole thing can be 'flat-packed'. The linings are my old favourite, black velvet, though it makes the photography a little difficult.
Pretty happy with the result in the competition too - managed to take 1st prize in the Club Challenge plus Champion of Show!


This Queens-size bed is made from Sally Wattle slabs that just seemed 'right' for the job. The slats and support rails are Klinki Pine. Made using 'knock-down' brackets, it is still very sturdy but easily disassembled to be moved.
The 'details' on the legs and covering the side-rail joins are made from Australian Ebony. The finish is Livos Kunos oil.


This Hall table is made from a Kauri Pine that was growing in the Bluff State School grounds but had to be removed to make way for a new building. I designed and built the table as a gift for the terrific couple who collected the log for me - but I managed to squeeze it into our local competition out here before handing it over and scored a Champion ribbon for it!


A sliding-lid box from Emu Apple for my daughters heirloom pocket watch.


A box made from Rose Mahogany (NSW Rosewood) with a River Oak burl lid insert and the tray and trimmings from Norfolk Island Hibiscus.
This is the first project I used my 'Domino' on to strengthen the lid and foot mitre joins. The tray can be rotated to fit in the bottom of the box.
I used 'SmartHinges' on this box as they are not only the easiest box hinges to fit, but they look so good they're hard to bypass!


This box is made from Rose Mahogany (NSW Rosewood) with a Silky Oak lid insert. Both timbers were salvaged during my time living on the Northern NSW coast.
The tray 'handle' is turned from River Oak burl for some local influence.


This is the first box I made once I got my Hammer C3-31 combination machine. The carcase and tray are made from Queensland Myrtle, the lid insert is spalted Tulip and the hinges and trimmings are all from Gidgee.
I like to size the tray so that it can be rotated a quarter turn to fit in the bottom of the box - that way if it ends up in the hands of a person who doesn't normally use the tray, it won't necessarily be discarded (hopefully!)
Quite happy with my first attempt at wooden hinges, and Gidgee is the perfect timber to make them from. The slots were cut using a home-made jig but I have since acquired an Incra iBox jig which will make the next set easier.


Cutting board made from end-grain Claret Ash and White Bauhinia. There's a long story behind the choice of these timbers but suffice to say it has great emotional significance so if the kids ever throw it out there'll be big trouble!!!


I don't have too many photos of my earlier stuff (probably just as well!) so this is about as far back as I'll go! I designed and made this 'Buffet' from Camphor Laurel for my daughters salon but these days it serves as their entertainment unit.


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