Bread Stow…

…otherwise known as a breadbox too.

Here’s the link for you get started watching the series:

Why change the name? Oh, well, I have seen so many breadboxes with tambour openings I didn’t want anyone confusing what my intent was. Silly I know.

This design was planned out in detail in my head from the beginning. By that I mean sizing, methodology, technique, wood everything, and I knew exactly what I wanted from filing off the brass screw heads to rounding the interlocking sections.

Part of my reasoning for not using dovetails was to rethink the joint to include metal fastenings for the joint securement. Also I knew too that I would not need clamps to seat everything. I have indeed filed the heads off screws for three decades and did it particularly when making bandsaw boxes was part of my daily bread work. In that case I didn’t need to use the screw heads to hold the boxes together as the construction methods did that just fine.

In my bread stow however I wanted more than just glue as the joint itself is less mechanical than say traditional joints like dovetails. But, more, the heads form full retention by my filing them into a rim that’s recessed into the wood.

I hope that you will join in watching this series as it is so very unique. I loved the idea through and through as I always seem to do with something new.


  1. My wife and I were looking for a commercially made stow a couple of weeks ago, while we were shopping in a much larger community far from home. Nothing to be found. I knew I would have to make what we needed. This post was most timely for us. Thank you, Paul.

  2. Hmmm, seems I have a 4/4 x 6 x 6′ slab of Ash wanting a project…..wondering IF there would be enough for one of these (maybe a plywood panel for a bottom?)

    The Ash is a bit spalted, though, and a bit of bark along one edge….

    2 loaves, or 3?

  3. Traditional tapered woodscrews into end grain?

    I was taught that with very few exceptions for some timber species (e.g. in English or European Ash that used in building vintage motor body frames) screwing into end grain was a no-no as grip is limited when compared with screwing at right angles to the grain.
    In this case I guess the screws are really just acting as clamps until the glue goes off, so are not really a mechanical connection…….?
    I DO like the heads filed flat!! A very subtle and classy detail.
    All strength to your arms Mr Sellers.

    1. There is always a danger with laws like that. Why not look at it this way. Screwing screws into end grain is acceptable and long lasting and perhaps fifty times more efficient than just nailing, which relies purely on friction, barbs, rings, glues on the nails themselves and compression depending on the nail type. Screwing into side grain gives optimum performance for screws anchoring parts together, no doubts there. I say this because I have been screwing into end grain all of my life as have most woodworkers and mostly because there be no such ultra quick alternative for general working without creating proper joints. As far as I can recall I have never known such connections fail me unless I have had the screw-gun/drill-driver on a wrong, more aggressive torque, kept my finger on the trigger at a fast rate and failed to respond to the excess of performance. This of course causes strip-out of the thread in the wood.
      Also, it is not simply a question of letting the glue dry to replace some kind of temporary strength in clamping by the screws to add longevity at all. The combined efforts of both glue and screw are really an excellent complimentary partnership that creates permanence and longevity. If I took the glue away on this project it would still last for a hundred or more years with just screws. If I took the screws away, perhaps half that.
      As an added note, I do know that the advancement in the designs of screws has radically changed in three or four decades, probably after that law of not screwing into end grain was put out, to the point that whereas the idea of the screw remains basically the same, threads are quite diverse according to need. Quite amazing really.

  4. In this blog you have shown the head of round head screw….complete and reduced to its finished size as it would be, in place. When I look again at intro vid I can see the head, just very slightly pulling in below surface as you screw in without disturbing the wood surface.

  5. Paul,
    Thankyou for your advice and experience.
    Quite agree that screwing is far superior to nailing.
    The ‘rule’ of not screwing into end-grain is probably from a similar source to the ‘rule’ of laying the plane on its side onto the bench.
    And yes, the proliferation of phillips/pozi headed screws for use with the electric driver sees all manner of straight shanks with differing pitches and aggressiveness of threads, many of which look as if they would bite better into end grain than traditional tapered shank types.
    I understand the practicalities of phillips/pozi heads, but when on show I do prefer the look of an ‘old fashioned’ slotted head.

Comments are closed.

Privacy Notice

You must enter certain information to submit the form on this page. We take the handling of personal information seriously and appreciate your trust in us. Our Privacy Policy sets out important information about us and how we use and protect your personal data and it also explains your legal rights in respect of it. Please click here to read it before you provide any information on this form.