Sunday, January 18, 2009

Completed my Malaysian version of birch bark box; Part 2

The strips of tree bark that I have soaked overnight have really soften up. This made work so much easier. This would in turn be the cordage I need for sewing the box together.

I started the sewing process by using just a simple stopper knot


I soon came to realize that perhaps this palm leave material is not all that suitable after all. The surface of the material is made up of small lines that make it very susceptible to tear. At this point, I realize that perhaps I should have aligned the lines vertically as opposed to horizontally to avoid tears. Then again doing that means that the tear may follow vertically.

Anyway, I did not want to re-do this. So, what I have come up with is a small strip to act to help reduce the stress that will tear the wall.

The small strip added to reduce stress

The stress is quite significant with the edge eagerly popping away

For the two ends of the box, I used this dried up wood. They are supposed to be used for my bow drill but what the heck  They are not the most ideal pieces around because they have that soft middle core. I decided to use them anyway as this is just my first attempt (experiment).

Shaping the wood pieces to fit the box

To keep the base piece in place, I decided to use the thorns from Boganvila.

As for the lid piece. Since the wood already has a soft inner core, I decided to thread it through and make a loop that will pull the lid off. I did a simple back splice to create the loop. Underneath the lid, the cordage is tied to a piece of stick.

It took me about 2 hours to complete this. It’s a hurried job and not pretty. Obviously there’s lots of room for improvement on this one. Below is the final product. Comments, suggestions are most welcomed.