Back to the Bible Box

I had finished carving the front of the new bible box . . .

 . . . and I had finished the sides.

It was time to start on the lid, period or not I enjoy carving the lids. It gives me a little chance to work on a larger piece and the lid can really draw the piece together. With that in mind I try to pull elements from both the front and the sides.

The thumbnail cuts from the sides and the opposing hearts from the front.

I had the main parts of the box finished.

But I had the inside of the box to worry about and I wasn't sure what to do. At the time I was preparing this piece to include in an art gallery show I'd been invited to. The show eventually canceled (But the good news is I secured the opportunity to carry my own show once I have enough pieces built up, It's gonna be a busy year for me I think) I wanted to do or try something different. 

In the middle of trying to figure it out I had the chance to take my oldest daughter to the Milwaukee Art Museum. I had an amazing day and took many, many, many pictures of their selection from the Chipstone furniture collection. I also got a look at this Game Chest, carved and inlaid and the inside was lined with marbled paper. 

I remembered marbelizing paper back in one of my old art classes, it wasn't too difficult of a thing to do. A few minutes searching the web and I found the recipes I needed. A little liquid starch and a little acrylic paint later and I had something to work with.

In case there is any interest I shot some video of the process.

The results inside the box can be stunning.

Ratione et Passionis

A quick note: The music I selected for the video was performed by a friend of my Travis Oppelt, He is a great musician, writing and playing all the instruments in every song on his album "You'll Never Stop Me" under the band name TravAce. If you enjoyed the song in the video then support another starving artist and download the album at and iTunes.  You can see more of his stuff on YouTube as well.

TravAce on

See more on YouTube

Thanks again


  1. You have come a long way in in a short amount of time with your carving skills. Very nice work and blog.

    1. Thank you very much! I appreciate you taking the time out of your day to read about what I'm up to.


  2. Derek,
    Once the marbled paper dries, do you seal it with anything? It is truly stunning and easy enough for a 10 thumb guy like me to try.
    Ian W.

    1. Ian,

      It is pretty easy and I'm glad you like it. I chose to not seal it with anything and to be honest I'm not sure what I would use if I wanted to go that way. I'm sure that even in the antique I was inspired by the papered area did not see heavy and rough use. So I would use this technique to line things that are going to see light and occasional use. such as a jewelry box or a gaming box, (My wife has plans for this one so I don't know what she'll decide to use it for) I did have another woodworking buddy say he was interested in using the technique for the paper shades for lamps. An awesome idea I think.

      ten thumbs or more we could all do it.


  3. As a bookbinder, I am occassionally called upon to give marbled paper a bit of a spray with lacquer or varnish. But not very frequently. Usually, I just leave it as is.

    Robert L. Angus
    Octavia Book Bindery


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