Workshops and Fall Tutorials
and rung rocking chairs, almost finished and ready to
take home. The instructor is Tom Donahey (grey beard).
Registration is still open for our August summer workshops.
Tom Donahey’s Post-and-Rung
Rocking Chair workshop is an opportunity to improve your
chair making skills, and to take home an heirloom piece of furniture.
(Past students tell us that the finished chair is worth more
than the class tuition.) Drew Langsner’s classic class,
Bowls and Spoons, is currently under-enrolled. Sign up and
you will experience what amounts to a pricier tutorial for the
lower cost of a summer workshop tuition. We still have one opening
in Carl Swensson’s Coopering
Remember, at Country Workshops your tuition includes materials,
room and meals, and use of specialty tools.
August 1-6: Post-and-Rung
Rocking Chair (Tom Donahey)
August 15-19: Carving
Bowls and Spoons (Drew Langsner)
August 29-September 3: Coopering
(Carl Swensson) – 1 opening
are now being accepted for fall tutorials. These courses are
limited to 4 students. Tuition includes materials, meals and
your private room. Specialized tools are provided for all of
these courses. Drew Langsner is the instructor. Further details
are on our web site.
November 14-18: Rustic
December 5-9: Carving
Bowls and Spoons
can be by postal mail, phone (828-656-2280) or e-mail. The tutorial
deposit is $350, with the balance due 4 weeks before each course
begins. The cancellation policy is on our web site. The web
site also has a printable registration form.
Our 2012 print catalog with listings for winter tutorials, weekend
classes and next summer’s courses with guest instructors
will available this fall. If you’re not on our mailing
list (or maybe not sure) just e-mail
us with your full name and postal address.
Carolina wren is rather common, but undeniably a
FROM THE 17TH CENTURY
Follansbee’s class – Make a 17th Century Carved
Box – was fully enrolled. Everyone had an especially
good time. The student learning curve was very real, and
fun at the same time. In his non-teaching moments Peter
did some rather serious bird watching around the workshop.
Over the week Peter observed 25 different species, and
he identified 6 other species that were up somewhere in
the tree cover, too high to see.
breasted grosbeaks (M&F, or juveniles)
buntings (M&F, or juveniles)
throated green warbler
White breasted nuthatch
tanager (M&F, or juveniles)
& white warbler
missed it, but Drew and others saw wild turkey hens
with their chicks on more than one occasion.)
Birds that were heard in the woods (but not seen)
warbler Black throated blue warbler
thrush Blue jay
Zack heard an owl over by the dormitory.)
COUNTRY WORKSHOPS STORE
Follansbee's instructional DVD "17th Century
New England Carving" is now available.
17TH CENTURY … NOW ON DVD
Peter Follansbee’s recently released DVD is titled
“17th Century New England Carving.” It’s
not quite the same as being at Country Workshops for the
class, but this is a really good instructional video.
The material is well organized and presented, with sections
on Tools and Materials, Postures and Grips, and a series
of practice exercises in technique and design. Produced
by Lie-Nielsen Toolworks, now available from our CS Store.
Century New England Carving DVD
SPECIAL TOOL FROM SVANTE DJARV
new engraving knife from Svante Djarv.
Jögge Sundqvist was teaching his Country Workshops
classes in bowl and spoon carving during the summer of
2010 he told us that his favorite engraving tool is a
knife made by our Swedish friend Svante Djarv. These were
strong words – Jögge is one of the most skillful
and artistic wood engravers that we know of. With this
advise, we have decided to add Svante’s karvsnittskniv
to our selection of “SD” tools. The blade
is 5/16 x 1-3/8 inches, with the razor sharp bevels formed
along the straight edge. (In contrast to bevels along
the curved edge, as with the various “sloyd”
Djarv karvsnittskniv (engraving knife)
Butter Knife Project
the past month we have added 7 butter knives to our design/study
collection. The photos below are of the profiles only.
Top view photos for each piece are included in The
Butter Knife Gallery on our web site.
26. Our friend Joe DesLauriers (Brasstown, NC) has been
coming to Country Workshops classes for 30 years. One
of his special areas of interest has been Swedish handcrafts.
It was a great surprise to see Joe’s take on butter
knife design. “Fit for a King” was carved
from Quaking Aspen (Populus Tremuloides). Work was done
with a carving knife, acrylic paint and mineral oil. 8-3/4
Numbers 27, 28. While teaching how to use a sloyd knife
and how to carve a butter knife, Drew Langsner recently
worked up this design. Conceived with function as the
first requirement, these are very different from his previous
series, with the exception that he has retained his signature
acrylic painted handles. Both of these are yellow birch,
with a soaked flax oil/citrus peel solvent finish.
In previous e-newsletters we have reported on woodworking
and woodworking poetry from Steven Smith’s classes
at the Ras Tanuda School, Riyadh, Saudi Arabia. With wood
rather scarce in the desert, Steve’s students have
been using dry beech imported from Eastern Europe. The
butter knives are cut out with a coping saw and then shaped
with rasps and sandpaper.
Numbers 29, 30 and 31 were all made by sixth-grader Morgan
Albritton. The finish is walnut oil.
Naomi Langsner (full disclosure; she is Drew’s daughter) has recently been getting interested in woodcarving. She has finished a small serving bowl, made from a split tulip poplar log, and a number of butter knives. (Spoon carving is next on the list.) Practice butter knife projects were carved from air-dried white pine. Real user pieces are made from freshly cut yellow birch blanks. After splitting with a froe, all shaping was done with a sloyd knife. After drying in a micro-wave (5 to 6 20-second bursts, full power) Naomi’s butter knives are sanded, and then soaked over-night in a mix of flax oil and citrus peel solvent.
Thanks to Joe, Morgan and Naomi for your contributions
to our collection. If you are into spoon carving, or want
to be, making a butter knife is a great way to test your
tools, develop knife grasps, check out different types
of wood, and play with designs. Please consider a contribution
to the collection. We now have 32 very interesting pieces,
and hope to see many more. The entire collection is on
our web site at Spreader
World – The Butter Knife Gallery. And of course
the collection is available for in-person appreciation
(including handling) if you have an opportunity to visit
As a sanding aid, Drew has made a simple support stand
that is clamped next to the jaws of a tabletop bench
vise. This allows you to do rigorous sanding (fast
and clean) without overly squeezing (and denting)
the work piece in the vise jaws.