Woodturned Engagement Ring Box




About: From the kitchen to the woodshop, follow us as we take on new crafts and share what we learn along the way. We are a young Swedish American couple living with our curious little pup Francis. Follow us on Ins...

We are glad to announce that your friends here at Craft Curious are officially engaged! True to our nature, we had to include a craft in our engagement. That's why I secretly made this little redwood ring box to hide the ring inside. We spent the weekend down in Asheville, NC, and during a foraging tour on a hillside in the woods I popped the question. How have you included craft or DIY in your engagement? We would love to hear your stories!


  • Wood lathe
  • Wood blank for turning
  • Wood gouges
  • Sandpaper (60 grit to 320 grit)
  • Foam
  • Cloth (white or other colors of your preference)
  • Scissors and sewing materials
  • Engagement ring; not required : - )

Step 1: Rough a Blank Piece of Wood

I used a block of redwood for the ring box because we first met in Northern California. Rough it down to whatever desired size you want for your box, big or small. I started with a roughing gouge and then switched to a bowl gouge.

Step 2: Turn a Tenon and Separate the Two Halves

First you want to turn down your blank to the size you are seeking. Then you want to turn the tenon on one end, and then sand the outside all the way up to 220 grit. Then you want to separate the piece into the two halves of the ring box, top and bottom. Take into account the amount of wood you are losing through the separation when envisioning the final size of your box. Be sure to carefully catch the piece that falls off.

Step 3: Hollow Out the Inside of the Box

Start with the bottom piece that is still mounted on the chuck. Hollow it out leaving a relatively thick wall. Then remove it from the chuck and mount the other half which is the top of the box. I used rubber holders to hold the piece tight without damaging it. Then for this one you want to rough an inside ring that will slot into the bottom piece. You want to be very careful here to get a snug fit for the box. Cut it down ever so slightly and check it against the bottom of the box often. Once you are getting close, switch to sandpaper so that you don't turn the lip of the top half too thin. If you do make it too thin, keep in mind that a couple layers of finishings will make it a bit larger so it can get back to that nice snug "snap" tight feel. It is easy to make it way too thin though, so be very careful, and if you would like you can try using calipers as well to get the perfect thickness.

Step 4: Clean Up the Outsides of the Top and Bottom

Now flip the bottom and top so that you can clean the bottom and top by shaving off the tenons. Its best to turn the bottom of the box relatively flat, and the top of the box with a bit of a curve. If you want you can add a finial to the box, and if so make sure to flatten the center top of the box.

Step 5: Apply Finish, Stuff the Inside and Plan the Engagement

Next you want to do one final sanding, and then apply some danish oil finish to everything.

I don't have great photos for this next part (I'll add some next week), but all you need is some foam that you can cut to size in a circle, and then sew some light white cloth around the foam and fit it into the bottom of the box. Then you use a box cutter to cut a slit in the foam and cloth where you can fit your ring inside.

There you go! You have a ring box and now you just need to plan the engagement. I surprised her halfway through a group foraging tour by sneaking off to a private hill side and pretending to take a photo of her looking into the mountains, when she turned around, there I was on one knee.

What crafty engagement stories do you have to share? We hope you enjoyed this instructable as much as we did! Learn more about us http://www.craft-curious.com/



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    7 Discussions

    Ephemeral Frank

    1 year ago

    What a wonderful idea! If only I'd thought of that a few years ago!


    2 years ago

    Very beautiful, I would perfer that to a velvet case.

    D WrightD

    2 years ago

    Very Nicely Done.


    2 years ago

    Simple, yet elegant, and it has memories and history that a flip top jeweler's box could never posses. Congratulations! ...and I voted for it in Wedding.

    1 reply

    2 years ago

    Lovely box, and I love all the gifs. :D Congrats on the engagement, too!

    1 reply