The new benches are here at last ! I have been thinking about these for some time, too long in fact. So some simple design to show off some great pieces of wood combined with elegant legs and a splash of vibrant colour. More colours and designs to follow, also some arms and backs, maybe even chairs.
The tops are oak and then spalted sycamore on the left.
It is not long now to the 2018 autumn Cornucopia Festival at White House Farm. As usual there will be a great mix of artists and makers and the festival will run from 15th September to 7th October. My studio workshop will be open on Saturdays and Sundays. I will be busy making a new range of coloured ash bowls and look forward to meeting you. If you wish to buy a bowl please email or phone me, other colours soon available.
Ash bowl with coloured and textured base, approximately 6 1/2″ by 3 1/2″ high £65
I have just completed a pair of oak sculpture stands. It took some time to find a good supplier of oak and then getting the galvanised feet made locally. However I am really pleased with the look and they should last a very long time.
We had a great weekend at FolkEast and it was great to have the little yurt on display while I was sitting in the background spoon carving ! There was a lot of interest in the yurt which has a handmade felt cover and a frame made by the renowned yurt maker, Hal Wynne-Jones. It was very cosy for overnight camping.
We had a great day spoon carving with some really good spoons at the end of the day and lots of shavings produced. People had a chance to try a range of spoon knives including Svante Djarv, Hans Karlsson, Ben Orford and Bo Helgesson. My preference remains with the Hans Karlsson knives but I am always keen to try out new knives and am tempted to buy a Twca Cam after reading Barn the Spoons excellent new book “Spon”.
We will be running another course in the near future and also shorter taster sessions if you don’t have much time or are not quite sure it is for you.
We had a great shed building course at White House Farm. Over the two days we built the frame, door and roof for a small shed and completed a logstore. It was great to use cedar shingles for the roof, very pleasant to work with and giving a great look. We will be running the course again on the 13th and 14th October. You will learn basic carpentry skills, look at different structures on site and learn about a range of materials. In this photo you can see the completed frame and in the background a reused stained glass window.
Here is a detail I really like from a structure on site. The cladding planks alternately overlap and have gaps with a very large, overhanging roof. This gives great shade and ventilation, ideal for our recent heat wave.
We will have a shed and log store available for sale shortly and I will upload pictures as soon as they are completed.
The dates for the Alde Valley Spring Festival are from the 21st April to the 20th May. As usual there will be a great range of art on display and also local makers showcasing their work. The workshops will be open at weekends from 10am – 6pm.
There have been some exciting developments with the building of a dedicated space to run craft workshops and a redevelopment of the woodworking shop to provide two workshop spaces. The renowned Suffolk chair maker, Jim Parsons, will be moving in to his new workshop very soon.
A full programme of courses will be launched shortly, including willow work, spoon carving, rustic chairmaking, introduction to green woodwork and a new course, building a shed. This course is suitable for complete beginners and will introduce basic hand skills, design and sourcing and choosing materials. Keep an eye on the website for further details.
It was another great festival at White House Farm with a big range of makers and artists. I was busy carving and making a new shaving horse dedicated to bowl carving. I was inspired by a recent article in Fine Woodworking by David Fisher who makes truly inspirational bowls with very fine detailing.
We may be running some courses early next year so keep an look out on the website it you are interested.
The dates for the spring festival are;
Sat 21st April ~ Sunday 20th May 2018
The Alde Valley Spring FestivalCelebrating Food, Farming, Landscape & the Arts
I have just finished, a pair of oak benches for the labyrinth at St.Andrews. The Quaker group in St.Andrews decided to celebrate their 50th anniversary with the creation of a labyrinth next to the museum. On reaching the centre there were to be two simple benches for reflection after walking the path. The benches are in local oak and are gently curing so as to fit the central space. On one there is a quotation from George Fox, an early Quaker. The letter cutting was done by a local craftsman.
“Be still and cool thy own mind and spirit”
“George Fox 1658”
The photos show the benches before installing and oiling and they look rather tall, they have been built with long legs so they can be securely fixed into the ground.
I am able to take commissions for making outdoor benches from quite simple designs through to elegant seats with arms and backs. Prices start from £500, please get in touch if you are interested in talking through an idea. They make great memorials for people and events.
We are running a new course, Christmas Willow bird sculpture at RSPB Minsmere. On this one day introductory course there will be a chance to learn how to make a willow bird sculpture. Suitable for beginning willow workers and the more experienced.