and Winter Tutorials
Corner Cabinet with Wooden Hardware is ideal for keeping
tea and spices, or other special things. This one is in
the Langsner's log living room. Below: Corner cabinet
detail. A hardwood spring can be added.
Registration is now open for our fall and winter 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
3 - 7: Ladderback
November 14 - 18: Rustic
December 5 - 9: Carving
Bowls and Spoons
January 16 - 20: Ladderback
January 30 - February 3: Rustic
February 13 - 17: Carving
Bowls and Spoons
February 27 - March 2: Making
the Hearth Chair
March 26 - 30: Making
a Corner Cabinet
April 9 - 13: Rustic
Hearth Chair is in the permanent collection of The Southern
Highland Craft Guild.
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
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.
Butter Knife Project
by Drew Langsner
the past month we have added 6 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.
Medieros, Jr; Meb Boden, Mary Bennett
McHugh; Zach Whitridge; Drew Langsner
friend Norman Stevens is known for his collection of over
200 teaspoons created by wood carvers around the world.
Lately, Norman has sent us spreaders made by 3 of his
spoon-carving friends. Thank you Norman, for sending spreaders
made by Raymond Medeiros, Meb Boden, and Richard McHugh.
Medeiros is a production carver from Lebanon, CT. Meb
Boden and her husband operate as Meb’s Kitchen Wares,
with their shop in S. Woodstock, CT. Mary Bennett (Rougemont,
NC) began carving at a Country Workshops course with Wille
Sundqvist many years ago.
Richard McHugh (from Rumford, ME) likes to write about
his way of seeing woodenware in the trees. This is an
excerpt from a recent hand-written letter.
“...I’ve been carving since I was a boy. Spoons
and utensils are a natural to me.
… A ‘simple’ spreader/knife must meet
a variety of requirements of form and function. Of the
human hand, intended uses, and structure of the wood it’s
…The human hand is a complex mechanism of various
joints, cables (tendons), sensors and a variety of grip
and release devices.
…All my spoons, spreaders, knives, forks and spatulas
have handles designed to fit the human hand.
… And balanced to stand up on their handles to reflect
upon where they came from standing in the living tree,
as well as being a touch of fine art sculpture into the
kitchen in a usable form.”
Whitridge (residence Planet Earth) was our 2011 summer
intern. He is now a graduate forestry student at Yale.
Known for his dry humor, Zach said ‘someone told
me that a finger is the best spreader.’
latest spreaders are almost 2 inches shorter than numbers
27, 28 in the collection. The older version would often
fall out of the small bowls that we use for serving spreads
like pesto or humus. Black birch, with acrylic painted
handles top coated with flax oil and a little citrus peel
THIS A NEW IDEA?
Dean's Kindling Brake
comes to splitting firewood it’s the big chunks that get
all of the attention. How many cords are you trying to stack
up and season before the next winter? Do you use a splitting
maul (called a “go devil” around here), wedges or
a hydraulic splitter? Or do you collect round wood in various
a fire -- in a wood stove or on a camping trip -- you also need
a selection of small, dry kindling. Most of us use a smallish
hand hatchet. The technique is to hold the stuff upright on
a chopping stump with one hand while wielding the hatchet with
your other hand. Let’s face it, this can be dangerous,
especially when you’re splitting large amounts, or doing
the work in the dark with a flash light or with bulky gloves
is an artist-craftsman who enjoys making buildings and many
other things that are unique, work well and are beautiful. The
Deans (who live in a spectacular setting in Homer, AK) use lots
of firewood, and that means lots of kindling. Recently, Jeff
e-mailed a photo of his new Kindling Brake. It’s designed
for safety reasons, and also for efficiency. The clamp is operated
by the foot treadle. The rubber hose grippers are sacrificial,
to preserve the device. My e-mail reply was that I like the
idea, but that it seemed un-necessarily complicated. A few days
later I received this computer sketch of a much simpler version.
much simpler version; not yet made and tested.
that the post should be dug into the ground, but it could have
some kind of a sturdy base. The swinging side members (similar
to those on a bodger’s shaving horse) needn’t be
curved. That’s Jeff’s aesthetic poking into the
discussion. I’m tempted to make one of these, while I
still have 10 fingers.
other home made devices that solve this need for a safe way
to split kindling? Alternatives and suggestions will be reported
in future editions of the Country Workshops e-newsletter.