A Little 17th Century Carving

Earlier this year, the museum I volunteer at took down a red oak tree on site. So throughout the volunteer season, we’ve been working on several projects from the wood that we split out of that tree. I’ve been working on a carved box (you can call it a bible box, or document box or whatever, but it’s just a box). I worked on carving the front panel over the weekend. The design was inspired by the work frequently done by Peter Follansbee. I’m not a big fan of working with oak in general, at least when it is sawn and dried. But working with green, riven stock is fun. It’s a different skill set from fine cabinetmaking really. And while I don’t like the look of flat sawn, kiln dried oak at all, I love the look of the riven stuff. So different.

Episode #52: Mitered Painting Frame

Mitered frames can be a challenge to build without specialized equipment. Furniture moldings are typically only applied on three sides of the piece, requiring only two mitered corners. Frames, however, require that all 4 corners are perfectly mitered. Even without the specialized miter trimming machines that are used by professional picture framers, the home woodworker can still make frames using a few simple common workshop appliances and techniques. That’s exactly what I do in today’s show, as I build a frame fitting for a Mother’s Day gift that my girls gave to my wife.


Finished Spoon

I realized I never posted the pictures of the finished spoon I had been carving. It’s been finished and in use for awhile now. I don’t think it’s bad for my first attempt, but I can definitely see a lot of room for improvement. I’ll also be sure that next time I use a greener piece of wood. This one was way too dry and hard. I just used some wax for a finish, which has pretty much already worn off from use. It works well though.






What I’ve Been Working On

Sorry for the lack of content recently here on the blog and podcast. Besides the fact that soccer and gymnastics seasons have started for my girls, for the last couple of weeks I’ve pretty much put aside everything else that was going on in the shop to finish working on this piece. I have a deadline to meet for this one or else Megan Fitzpatrick will be knocking on my door, which isn’t a bad thing in itself, but I don’t want to make Megan angry. Megan likes me right now and I’d like to keep it that way :).

Chimney Cupboard

More will be coming in the very near future. I’ll be posting updates & podcasts on the entertainment center (doors, finally!), the dressing table (more carving on the feet), the joyned stool (scratching moldings & turning on the pole lathe), and I’ll be starting a few other new projects as well (because three ongoing, unfinished projects just isn’t enough for me to keep track of). Just a few more minor details to take care of on this cupboard first.

Episode #45: Dressing Table Part 2 – Carving the Ball

It’s been a little while since I’ve worked on this, but I got a little time to do some carving, so here’s the next installment of the series. Carving the feet for me follows a step-wise process that starts with the square foot, transitions to a cylinder, then a ball, and finally, the toes are shaped to finish it off. I find working this way to be more consistent for me than just winging it. In this installment, I’ll work on carving the ball of the ball and claw foot.