Showing her hands: The Puzzle Box Maker

Puzzle Box Making

Tracy Wood Clemons a woodworker specialising in puzzle box designing and building from Rochester, New York. Her first love is being a wife, mother, daughter, and a grandmother! She loves her life and feels lucky to have it. She has been crafting handmade wood-worked puzzle boxes for the last two years. She produces and sells a line of her own original puzzle boxes from a commission.

When we were first introduced to her work we were immediately curious how she had fallen into this line of work. As puzzle collectors and enthusiasts, we’ve followed Tracy’s work on Facebook for a while now and was curious to learn more about her path to designing the incredible puzzle boxes.

Tracy’s story is as unique and interesting as the work she produces. As we talked, we learned that before puzzle box making, she worked as a house painter for 20 years and a house cleaner for five years. In this exclusive interview, Tracy shares how she got started working with wood, her passion for her craft that shows in the beautiful pieces she produces.

MG: Tracy, how did you get started in puzzle box making?

TC: How I got started in this puzzle box world was by Jeffrey Aurand seeing my work on Facebook. He was my very first commission, the Aurand box. He then invited me to the 2015 Rochester RPP where I met some wonderful puzzle friends. My puzzle building took off from there. I hope you enjoy the rest of the interview.

MG: Your work is pretty unique. For those that don’t know, could you tell us a bit about yourself and what you do?

TC: I have always been a very much into art and self-exploration. I have always felt a close connection to wood and was very intrigued by what it was and what it could become.

MG: Puzzle box design and woodworking is not something that most people get into, what’s your background and how did it become your passion?

TC: I started by making jewellery boxes. My first was for my Father 11-19-2001. Then I started to make more boxes for the family with hidden compartments. I had started building trick boxes without even knowing it.

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