Author Archives: literaryworkshop

The Ukulele Spoon

Did you ever have one of those odd bits of wood hanging around the shop that is pretty useless but just nice enough not to throw away? For example: Quite a few years ago, I brought this little piece home … Continue reading

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Don’t Destroy Yourself

I sometimes hear dedicated hand-tool woodworkers praise the way that woodworkers of yore built splendid pieces of furniture without the aid of power tools, with the implication that we, too, should work in that totally “unplugged” way. I used to … Continue reading

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The Literary Workshop: Now on Video!

I’ve shot my first woodworking videos. What video do you want to see from me next? Continue reading

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125 Utensils in Three Weeks

It was already shaping up to be a busy market season when somebody messaged me wanting to know if I could make 125 little spoons and/or spreaders. A local company wanted to put together gift baskets with locally-made items, and … Continue reading

Posted in Wood and Woodwork, Woodenware | 3 Comments

“For Love and Money,” My Latest Article – Published in Quercus Magazine

It’s been a few years now since Nick Gibbs shuttered a British magazine called Living Woods, which had featured articles about traditional woodworking as well as bushcraft and related matters. He had been the magazine’s sole editor as well as … Continue reading

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The Art of Sanding

Sanding is so easy to do that it is very often done badly. But sanding well is a skill just like any other woodworking skill. Doing it well takes good tools, good technique, and practice. In the world of dedicated … Continue reading

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What’s in a Name?

Since middle school, most of us have hesitated to let other people give us names. Name-calling is a basic tool in the toolbox of bullies and leaders of cliques. And even though our parents mostly gave us nice, socially-acceptable names, … Continue reading

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Hurricane Sally: A Woodworker’s Perspective

To employ the worst of literary cliches: “It was a dark and stormy night.” It really was. On the evening of Tuesday, 15 September 2020, Hurricane Sally slowly moved into the Alabama Gulf Coast. For the last few days, our … Continue reading

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A Note of Encouragement to Beginning Carvers

If you’re doing any wood carving these days, you probably belong to one or more Facebook groups for carving. Or you follow some expert carvers on Instagram. Seeing beautiful woodwork every day can be inspiring at first. But eventually it … Continue reading

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Can You Carve Spoons from Dry Wood?

Spoons and other “treen” are traditionally carved from green wood, cut fresh from the tree. The obvious advantages are that (1) fresh-cut wood is softer and generally easier to cut than dried wood, and (2) you don’t have to spend … Continue reading

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