DIY Christmas

My wife came home with a Christmas tree, somewhat unannounced, about two weeks ago. After she set it down she said she was off to go get a stand... hmm. The ubiquitous Christmas tree stand in the US is stamped sheet metal painted red and green; I'm not a huge fan, so I offered to make one. She expressed her skepticism, but a few days after finals I built it.

It's made from leftover 1 1/4" angle iron (about 5' of it) from my previous coffee table project. I chose a triangular base because it would never wobble and would most easily hold the tree. The three pieces are identical which made fabrication quick and simple. More so in this project, because of its utilitarian nature, I let the material and fabrication process guide the design. For example, aesthetically, the angle iron should be rotated to show the flat side on the outside, but this would require some fairly difficult cutting and welding to make the connection between the three pieces. Instead I chose to keep the top flange hanging to the outside so that the angle iron could be simply butt-welded to one another.

The three pieces just prior to butt-welding them together then bending the legs up and welding them in place.
I tapped the angle iron to receive 5/16"-18 screws.
The finish is the same boiled linseed oil  that I usually use. I use steel wool beforehand to remove most of the mill slag.
Next I had a problem with the Christmas tree ornaments... so I designed some a laser cut them. Bonus: I found all the plywood in the garbage bins around the M&M building.This was a quick job from start to finish. For next year I'm going to come up with some more interesting designs and use  the 1/8" Baltic birch ply (it cut much faster and was burned less).

This photo was taken before I sanded them to remove the burn marks.
The cut-outs left on the laser bed.

 Here's a video of the laser cutter cutting the ornaments out. It's kind of like watching a waterfall or fire; even though it's not that exciting it's oddly mesmerizing and hard to avert your eyes.

I made some frames from Peruvian (tropical really) walnut for a few in-laws and myself. I also grabbed some panga lumber for the first time; beautiful wood but it explodes when you machine work it. I kind of liked it.
The finished stand. Still need to get some black bolts... Home Depot lacks aesthetic options.
The finished product.
The staves (soon to be molding) of Peruvian walnut being routed to form a rabbet.
This was my Christmas gift to my sister-in law. The frame is 11" x 14" (inside) and made of Peruvian walnut with maple splines.
The photos is a silver gelatin print I enlarged from a B&W negative I took of her in Napa. It's mounted on museum board .