Know the Strengths and Weaknesses of Your Materials

This photo in my Twitter feed caught my eye. It’s a long workpiece being supported by a custom-built support resting on top of a platform. The photo was taken by Dominic of Be Inspired With Dominic. It may not seem noteworthy, and perhaps it is not worth a blog post, but I noticed that the … Continue reading Know the Strengths and Weaknesses of Your Materials

How I Find Inspiration Online

The internet is a great resource, but trying to find inspiration for a design without spending hours can be difficult. I find the most efficient way is to scan through the results of an image search. But a search for “dining table” isn’t likely to be very fruitful. Think carefully and add some key words … Continue reading How I Find Inspiration Online

Make Something Extraordinary

Slow down and take your time. Make something extraordinary. This has been my mantra lately as I have been developing several items for production. Some have been in the active development stage for over a year, which is unusual for me - usually once something is started, it is completed within about a month. I … Continue reading Make Something Extraordinary

Do You Really Want to Learn? Then Set Yourself Up for Failure

I think that we try too hard to succeed. Because of that, our learning is impeded. Here's an example.Let's say that I want to build a simple stool for my workshop - a utilitarian piece and one where I am free to experiment because I am the only user of the piece. I could use … Continue reading Do You Really Want to Learn? Then Set Yourself Up for Failure

Designing Furniture: Considerations Around Table Legs and Leverage

A significant part of table design involves the legs and any framework connecting multiple legs to each other, to the table top, and to provide strength. When it comes to the structure of the table, the joints between the legs and other parts of the table are where damage is most likely to occur. Pulling … Continue reading Designing Furniture: Considerations Around Table Legs and Leverage

Making Without Compromises

One of the projects which I’m currently building, and designing along the way is a pen. It has months of thought already invested and I am building it to be the best. I do take pleasure in using and owning unique and fine writing tools (and other tools, too). I also enjoy indulging myself in … Continue reading Making Without Compromises

A Single Defining Element

I found another good quote from the back issues of Woodwork. This one is from the article titled Judy Ditmer: The Power of Acceptance by Kerry Pierce in issue #45, from June 1997. It resonates with me, as this way of working is not unfamiliar to me. “‘Stephen Jay Gould, the archaeologist and teacher... discussed a … Continue reading A Single Defining Element

Good Tools Work for You, Not Against You

Nearly every tool is designed with compromises. In some cases, the compromise is made to increase the ease of production (and therefore lower cost). Other times, the compromise is made to make the tool more appealing to a broader audience. After using a tool for a while, these compromises become very clear. You'll think, "I … Continue reading Good Tools Work for You, Not Against You

Defects Are Hints For Something Better

In all the creative work I have done with live-edge material, I have always looked at a cut section - where a limb was removed or the material cut to length - as a shortcoming. But recently, I had an epiphany. Like so many of my revelations, this one came while experimenting on a piece … Continue reading Defects Are Hints For Something Better

Woodworking Digitally is More Convenient, But Not Better

What Do I Mean By "Woodworking Digitally"? First, let me define digital. I don’t exclusively mean the use of measuring tools with LCD screens. I mean the use of any numbers at all, whether Metric or Imperial, decimals or fractions. According to the Merriam-Webster dictionary: digital: of, relating to, or using calculation by numerical methods … Continue reading Woodworking Digitally is More Convenient, But Not Better