Here's an easy introduction to the art of inlay as we inset strips of pure white holly into the lid of our cedar box.
The basic tool is a scraper made in the same fashion as a marking gauge.
Grind the blade from an old saw blade so that it is square-edged and about 1/8 inch wide.
Make a new arm for your gauge with a kerf sawn down on one end to allow you to insert the blade so that it protrudes 1/8 inch, holding it in place with a pair of machine
screws and nuts.
Now lay out your pattern on the board and use the scraper to cut the grooves, first across the grain, and then along the grain.
Use a cutting gauge to cut out the holly strips to fit in the grooves.
Set in the strips one after the other, mitering them at their ends to make neat corners.
Permission of The University of North Carolina Press