It's not a fancy place -- just a room
about 12 X 20 off the garage. It seems to grow smaller everyday as
I add more tools and treasured pieces of wood. Most of the wood I
gather is in raw logs and they need to be prepared for drying and set
aside (some take three or four years to dry).
can see from the picture of me in the shop that I am very careful to
protect myself from the wood dust and chips. That's because some
of it is quite dangerous to inhale...others cause rashes and such.
If you are thinking of working with wood read
the chart that appeared in American Woodturner, June, 1990.
From this source I have learned to be particularly careful when working
with Beech, Hemlock, Oak, Quebracho, Redwood, and Sassafras.
Almost every kitchen has a wooden spoon or
two these days. But most are machine turned and certainly not like
the grand spoons of yesteryear that were hand worked. But
cooks who take pride in their equipment often want the wide, deep bowls
and fine woods in their wooden spoons. They're not found in our
This Birds-eye Maple porringer (oatmeal
bowl) used to be the above block of wood. It's patterned after a
pewter porringer circa 1750.
A hand carved wooden spoon costs a little
more than those turned out by the millions. But for the discerning
cook it's worth every penny!
is a factor. For example, it's very hard to get enough manzanita
wood for a project because it naturally splits in every which direction
when it dries. I had a 6 foot limb and had to cut that whole thing up in
small pieces looking for enough "clean" pieces to make this
dish and spoon. (Manzanita is of the northern Alpine genus
categorized with other bearberry plants that grow in the lower mountain
chaparel). Bottom line is there ain't a lot of Manzanita around
for carvers and when ya do get some...it ain't gonna be a big piece!
So I guess the horseradish set is a bit rare for that reason. That
red streak running down through the
dish and spoon is the heart wood of the manzanite.
Recently a lady in South Carolina
requested a spoon like her grandmother had used (her grandmother was
from the old country and brought them with her to America). It
seems she had searched for nearly 25 years for a "Gramma"
spoon. She found it here. Hope you find that special spoon
too. If you don't see what you are looking for...let me know,
perhaps I can make it for you.