Very beautiful! I want to look at the photos again when I get home so I can see more detail. Am I correct in assuming the purpose of using a veneer is to give the look of a very expensive or rare wood at lower cost than if you were to make the piece entirely out of the veneer material?
...On my dang phone
Not always but that's sometimes the case. In the case of the jewelry box I made, the substrate is Honduras Mahogany which is a very nice wood. It was finger-jointed and I could have put a finish on that with no problem. But the look I wanted was based around the Rosewood veneer I bought for this project. I doubt solid lumber was even available in the particular type of Rosewood I used.
Veneers are often used for Marquetry and Intarsia where it's just not practical to use thicker wood (lumber). A lot of woodworkers view veneered work as being a little higher up the food chain in skills and talent required to achieve an end result (I don't think that's the case, btw - not hard, just different than lumber). Even more important, buyers
often place finely veneered work above solid lumber in value. When I did woodworking professionally I can tell you that everything veneered commanded a higher price than solid lumber work. Now some of that was because the solid lumber work was Honduras Mahogany, American Walnut, etc. - all very nice woods - but when you start talking about Walnut Burl, Figured Koa, Carpathian Elm Burl, Imbuya Burl, Olive Ash Burl, etc. people seem to automatically want to pay more... I had no problem letting them.
Veneering is just another means to an end. If your project requires veneer for an end result or look, then veneer. If your need for veneer is because solid lumber in the same wood costs too much or isn't available in lumber, then veneer.