An Old Box Gets a New Life

my uncle gave me an old box to transform for him. He thinks it's an old tractor toolbox, but we're not positive.
He stripped it down and you can see it's in pretty rough shape.
Notice how the lid no longer lays flat. Also notice the cool spline joints.
Inside the box is big and empty.
He collects antique and vintage fishing lures, so I wanted to make it look like one of the neat old boxes the lures used to come in. I made up the fictional Genuine Big Stone Lake Bait and Tackle Co. on the very real Big Stone Lake. A picture of the lake is on the lid. Yes, the long, thin blue line is the lake. I painted a version of my uncle's trophy Walleye on the lid as well. I primed the box, painted it a creamy color then went over it lightly with stain to "antique" it.
I wanted him to be able to store his collection of lures in this box, so I built him three divided trays and lined them with felt. I used rope handles and repeated the spline joints from the box. I discovered that I really love the look and strength of spline joints.
The aforementioned original spline joints. I highlighted them with two different colors of stain. You can also see some of the fun antique lures I painted all around the box.
Here's a close up of the scales on the Walleye. I used an airbrush and netting (like from a shower scrubby) to create the scale effect.
Notice the people in the boat. One is fishing and the other is paddling. This represents the time we ran out of gas. I'll let you guess which one of us is doing the paddling.
For fun I made him an "antique" like lure of my own. First time I'd made one. Thankfully I've gotten better at it.
More lures on the back of the box
You can see that the lid is still wonky. No matter what, it wouldn't straighten out.
More lures.
Here's the box loaded with some of his collection. I painted a fisherman's prayer on the inside of the lid for him too. He loves this box which makes me very happy!

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  • Kim Kim on Nov 18, 2015
    wow that is amazing! What did you use to prepare the wood for painting?


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