November 2014 Highland Woodturning News Welcome to Highland Woodworking - Fine Tools & Education Learn more about Highland Woodworking View our current woodturning classes and seminars Woodturning articles and solutions Subscribe to Highland Woodturner


Turning Inspiration from a Grand Piano

by Bill Rosener
Tahlequah, OK

Note: Click on any picture to see a larger version.

Do you know an inspiring artist? Maybe the next Van Gogh or Monet? If so, your artist might be looking for something to hold their drawing instruments (crayons)! A grand piano shaped holder allows for an exciting and innovative way for an artist to store crayons, colored pencils, etc. This holder combined with a box of crayons makes a great birthday or Christmas present for those young ones in your life - without a huge investment in time. Depending upon your turning skills and the details on the piano legs, this project can probably be created in an hour or two.

This holder requires you to create a piano shaped top along with turning three wooden legs. The top part of the holder can be constructed with various tools. But a band-saw or jig saw would probably be necessary to create the curved edge on the piano. Once the top has been created, I drilled 17 holes in the top with a 3⁄8" forstner bit and 3 holes in the bottom with the same bit to hold the piano legs. Next I turned the three wooden legs. If you are feeling extra creative, Figure 3 at the end shows some ideas for possibly leg patterns. My piano legs are approximately 1.75" long. This includes a 1⁄2" tenon hidden inside the holder and a 1.25" viewable piano leg. Finally sand and finish your holder as you see fit.

The crayon holder pictured below holds 17 crayons. Keep in mind that many crayons are sold in packages of 8, 16, 24, 48, and 64. So if you think your artists wants a perfect match (i.e., there are the same number of holes as crayons), you might consider drilling more or less holes. Rather than buying crayons, another option for filling the holder is to keep taking your artist out to their favorite restaurant (one that provides kids with crayons and paper) until their crayon holder is full!

Figure 1

Figure 2

Figure 3

Bill Rosener is a woodturner and a college professor at Northeastern State University (NSU) in Tahlequah, Oklahoma where he teaches courses in computer information systems. See for examples of his work and contact information.You can email Bill at .

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