Exclusive, luxury, handmade & personalised wooden boxes custom made just for you!

Welcome to Knysna Woodworkers! My name is Johan Nel and among other woodcraft, I make, by hand, luxury wooden boxes of all kinds, which can all be customised and personalised to your liking. These are perfect for collectors and as a thoughtful and high quality gift for a loved one.

Each wooden box is carefully and individually handcrafted to meet the unique requirements of the client and I personally select only the finest woods for use in their manufacture. I love working with the various woods, and the passion I have is reflected in all the pieces I make.

My workshop is based in Knysna, Western Cape, South Africa, but these goods can be supplied anywhere.

Please peruse my portfolio below and feel free to contact me to discuss any wooden boxes you would like custom made or for any other custom woodwork you need done.


While I do carry a standard range of items, some of which are displayed here, most of my work is bespoke, made to order and according to the unique specifications of the client.

Please scroll all the way down the page and through my portfolio (there are numerous items to look at!). I’ve only included a small selection from my overall portfolio but this should give you a good idea of the range and quality of my work and provide some inspiration.

Each of the pictures have been given a reference code which will make it easier for you to point out items or aspects of items you like when looking to acquire a quotation.

Pro Tip: Mix and match from the different box designs that follow! These items can be made in any size you need, from any woods, in any colours you prefer and to any design you would like.


Beautiful custom made jewellery boxes from simpler to more complex designs. Any design can be customised in any way according to your individual needs.

The following items range from some “starter” jewellery boxes — that make the most ideal gifts for girls and young adults who are just starting their jewellery collection, to some larger and more elaborately designed ones intended for adult women with larger jewellery collections.

Note that if you fancy a particular design but would prefer a different wood or you need more drawers and/or more compartments (or anything really) please specify.


Custom made Ring Boxes — these items can be made to any shape, size and colours and we’re able to laser engrave if you would like some additional personalisation, such as a name, graphic, or a special message.

Don’t ruin the effect of a beautiful and often expensive ring by placing it in a cheap box. If you really want to show someone how much you love them, displaying the ring in a quality handmade box is a must. It’s additive to the effect of the ring itself and really shows you went the extra mile. You didn’t just pick something cheap off the shelf, you had a box specially handmade just for them. So don’t skimp on the box. Get a quality and custom made box for your loved one, it will make them feel even more special.

For Jewellers: Custom Ring Display & Ring Sizer Boxes

Custom ring display and sizer boxes designed for jewellers who would like to display their wares in style.


Custom made keepsake boxes, also frequently referred to as memory boxes. These are typically used to store items relating to a special person or an important event in a person’s life, such as the birth of a child, a wedding, or any momentous event really, sometimes even a sad one.

As a box of this sort is intended to store very precious and sentimental items, it’s very worthwhile to have a special box custom made to this purpose. Additional personalisation is also recommended for these sorts of gifts. Ask us to laser engrave a name, picture or special message along with the box.


Beautiful and exclusive custom made cufflink boxes and watch boxes. Simpler to more complex designs.

Please specify the number of compartments you would like as these wooden boxes can all be customised to the size of your particular collection. Compartments for both cufflinks and for watches can be combined into a single box design should you so wish.


Custom made coin and Kruger Rand boxes. These can be customised to accommodate any number of precious coins.


Custom made knife boxes. These can be customised to suit any size or shaped knife.


Special custom made wine boxes. I can make a beautiful custom box to suit any size or shaped bottle. These can be branded with cutouts or laser engraving if you so wish.


Custom made storage chests and crates, for the storage of treasure and other such goodies. These can be custom built to any size you require. With curved or flat lids.


Beautiful custom made pen boxes. These can be customised to accommodate any number of pens. They are top quality, come in a great variety of different woods and can be laser engraved with your name, logo, any other graphic or a message. These make great sure-fire gifts for friends and as corporate gifts employed to promote your brand.


Custom made boxes created for your business and with your branding. Either supply the design and I can make it or alternatively I can design just the right box to suit a particular product or purpose you have.


Here I had the pleasure of crafting the special presentation box that houses the piece of jewellery that Miss South Africa Demi-Leigh Nel-Peters took to the Miss Universe 2017 as the National Gift. The item was was manufactured from a piece of oak that was burnt to near coal in the Knysna fires that I rehabilitated and handcrafted into the presentation box you see below.


Miscellaneous wooden boxes, including some luxury boxes, one with a hidden compartment, some custom designed to hold perfumes, for cigars, a seahorse, a custom breadbox, and various other odds and ends.


The easiest way to proceed is to choose something you like from the portfolio section above and then specify any unique requirements you may have, such as any size, shape and colour or wood preferences. Each picture has its own unique reference code you can refer to if need be.

Feel free to mix and match elements from different box designs, even from different sections, to create a box that is uniquely yours. For example you might want to use a memory box design as a jewellery box instead or vice versa, or you could combine the lid from one box with the base of another.

You are also welcome to show me drawings or pictures of items you like from elsewhere too. Simply email the pictures through to me along with any custom preferences you have so I get a clear idea of what you want created. Any box design is possible – if you can imagine it, I can make it for you.

Once I know what it is you want, I will submit a formal quotation to you along with the time it will take for me to complete the manufacture of your item and the shipping arrangements.

(NOTE: If you need a completely unique and original box designed and created from scratch, please let me know what your requirements are. I do offer box design as a service as well.)


Additional personalisation of your wooden box, such as laser engraving a name, picture or personal message adds a nice touch to an already special gift. It really goes a long way in making the recipient of the gift feel that much more special. We recommend it in most cases. Ask us to laser engrave.


My name is Johan Nel. I am the founder of Knysna Woodworkers and the primary craftsman, I have over 35 years of experience doing woodcraft of all kinds.

In particular, it brings me tremendous satisfaction to create these wooden boxes for people. I’m keenly aware of the importance of these gifts. These aren’t just boxes, these are extra special gifts intended to store extremely precious and meaningful things and to convey your most important feelings to someone special. You are essentially expressing to someone how much you love them through the gift.

This is why I take the utmost care in creating these wooden boxes to the absolute highest standards possible and why I have the passion for them that I do. I understand full well just how important these gifts are and it brings me tremendous joy to know I have played a role in an extremely meaningful event in a person’s life through these boxes.

My contact details are below.


Please feel free to contact me to discuss any wooden boxes you would like custom made. Even if you aren’t sure yet of what you want exactly, I can assist and help you find a solution.

Johan Nel

Tel: 073 394 0057


Physical Address:
32 Waenhout Ave, Knysna Industrial,
Knysna, Western Cape, South Africa

NOTE: I share premises with NST Construction. There are entrances from both Waenhout Ave and from at the end of Hadeda Str. The easiest access to my workshop itself is from Hadeda Str. right at the end.