Rather than seeking ideas for myself, I just want to share a few
things I've made in my shop over the years as gifts at Christmas
to friends, neighbors and employees. Perhaps others will join in
with their own projects and maybe it'll inspire some of the
woodworkers with shops and scrap material to get to sawing.
The first thing I'll mention used some of the smallest pieces of
scrap: a tiny birdfeeder. The project involved ripping walnut
scraps into 3/16" thick widths, then giving them a swipe across
the table sander to smooth up both sides. Thickness was not
critical. The base of the feeder was about 1-1/2" long by 1"
wide. There were four "posts" supporting a roof made of the same
material. The posts were simply more of the 3/16" or so material
ripped square and were about 3/4" to 1" long, beveled to a 45
degree angle on one end and the other end square. The roof was a
gable-type joined at the peak at a 90 degree angle and there were
gable ends. It was a bit longer than the base and each side was
around 1" or so wide. The gable ends concealed where the upper
part of the posts joined the roof.
The entire thing was held together with drops of glue- there was
no joinery or fasteners involved.
The "trick" for this gift was that before I added the post and
roof to the base, I drove 4-5 carpet tacks vertically into the
platform, or base. The roof sheltered them, once glued in place.
I did no finishing of the tiny feeder. (In some European
countries, it is called a Bird Platform)
When I boxed it to give as gifts, I added in a card, sealed in an
envelope. On the outside was written: Open only after you have
tried to guess what this is." Inside was a card saying, "Merry
Christmas from Nonny. This is a "Tacks Shelter."
An alternative to the birdfeeder/tax shelter was a mosquito
feeder. This was a piece of 1" material (3/4" planed) 3/4" long.
It was mounted on a 3/16" dowel, about 5" long and mounted to a
base. The piece of wood was mounted as a diamond shape and not as
a square shape to the dowel. I then used the very thinnest
material I had- usually ripped and then sanded to make a little
roof that overlay the upper pieces of the top. A hole was drilled
into one of the faces. It, also, was given as a gift to visitors.
Have you ever wondered if the bills
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