Wooden Boxes and Trunks

Oh but we do like vintage wooden storage boxes, and we keep them, sometimes restore them and have them available for you here. In our family we use vintage wooden jewellery boxes for our own possessions but also as memory boxes in which to keep treasured momento’s - for example our current two Cairn Terriers are numbers 6 and 7 in our long association with the breed and we keep the pedigree certificates, collars and favourite toys of their predecessors in a Cairn box.

Who doesn’t love an old box? We feel that the ageing process makes them what they are, like us, slightly battered and showing the character of our age. If folks want a perfectly sanded new box then it is unlikely that we will have what you want. Please enjoy our collection, whether you are searching for a vintage wooden chest, trunk or box.

Things to consider with wooden boxes?
Things to consider with wooden boxes?

Q: Beware veneers! 

If you are buying an antique wooden jewellery box it is likely that it has been veneered (a thin layer of fine wood glued to an underlying structure of more basic wood. Veneered boxes are beautiful but must be cared for carefully as the veneer is seriously thin. If your box is damaged or pieces of veneer are missing, or the veneer is lifting away from the underlying box, it is a specialist task to fix your box. Never use an electric sander on veneer.

Q: Box maintenance 101? 

Vintage wooden storage boxes, whether large or small, have different finishes and over time these need to be refreshed. We tend to wax and polish our boxes as the wax allows older wood to breathe. Other finishes like linseed or Danish oil, and even French polish have similar qualities. Although more modern finishes such as polyurethane varnish have sealing qualities they do not allow the wood to breathe. It may sound obvious but it is worth saying that a rub down with a damp cloth for cleaning is far better for your box than getting it soaking wet which might warp the wood - and will certainly damage veneers.

Q: Let’s talk woodworm? 

Nothing we supply will have active woodworm. Items that have in the past had woodworm will have been treated and there is no shame in owning an item with a past! In fact any antique wooden box is likely to have had some attention in its past. 

Q: Domed top trunks

We rarely stock dome topped/captains trunks, but they can be picked up relatively cheaply. Why, you ask? Simples - dome tops are less useful in the home as nothing can be stored on top of them without it sliding off!


Our wooden boxes and trunks collection is part of our wider collection of wood and leather items - come and have a look around this section of our store.