Blog: Carving

Heart Spoon for Mom

In my last blog post I talked about my kids carving this spoon for their mom. Here is the finished project. The wood is pine and was an easy wood for the kids to learn how to carve with. The spoon now has a permenent home on the back of the stove for all of us to look at every time we cook!

I loved how the kids’ imaginations worked while carving the spoon. It was my daughter’s idea to carve the heart into the spoon, and it was my son’s idea to carve the small notch just above the bowl. These are things I wouldn’t have even thought about doing, so I am glad that the kids got creative!

I want to thank Doug Pauls of Rocky Mountain Alphorns – he was the one that gave me the spoon blank and spurred the idea. Here is a youtube video you can watch of his journey into carving!  Watching this makes teaching my kids how to carve that much more special.

Carving a Spoon for Mom

I got inspired last winter to carve some spoons for gifts for the holiday season. My kids loved hanging out in the wood shop with me, and they decided that they wanted to help carve a wooden soup spoon for their mom.

Not only did they both participate in using the chisels to shape and texture the spoon, they also came up with the idea to carve a heart into the end of the handle. I was very proud of my son and daughter for listening to my safety expectations so that they could carefully use the sharp chisels.

I love teaching them how to use hand tools to create their own wood projects, because we get to spend that special time together and they feel so good about what they have made with their hands.

We finished the spoon with food-grade oil & beeswax finish, then wrapped it up to give to mom! Watch for the next blog to see a photo of it finished.

Lotus & Dragonfly Carving

Lotus & Dragonfly Carving

It was my special honour, and one I didn’t take lightly, to craft a memorial urn for a dear friend after her passing. I suggested that a carving on the top of the box would add a personalized touch, and after scrapping several design ideas and one false start on a carving, I came up with this design.

My friend loved dragonflies and lotus flowers, and I wanted to incorporate both. The wood for the carving is cedar, because I liked the colouring of the cedar contrasted with the red colour of the African padauk wood lid.

The urn is finished with natural wood finishes (tung & linseed oils and beeswax), and it is appropriate for an eco-friendly burial of a loved one’s ashes, especially if the loved one was not embalmed or was embalmed with non-toxic chemicals. Continue reading Lotus & Dragonfly Carving

Wood Urn ~ Maple & African Padauk

Wood Urn ~ Maple & African Padauk

This wood box urn is made from african padauk with a liner of maple as a contrasting colour. The padauk is a beautiful red hued wood, and the natural oil and beeswax finish really brought out the colour and grain. I also added several beads inlaid to the sides of the box as a special memorial – the beads belonged to my mom before she passed, and now they will help hold my friend’s ashes.

Using exotic hardwoods is not something I usually recommend, unless I know that the wood is not endangered or restricted. I feel it’s important to understand how our choices impact the world around us, including places that we can’t see or visit easily.

What are some of the factors to think about when considering whether a foreign-sourced wood would be suitable for a project? Continue reading Wood Urn ~ Maple & African Padauk

Beautiful Memorial

Beautiful Memorial

A memorial urn for a dear friend who passed last year. I was honoured to be asked to craft a special wooden box for an urn, and I really enjoyed the process of creating the urn, from choosing the right wood, to carving the top with some of her favourite images – a lotus flower and a dragonfly.

It meant a lot to me that I was able to give the box to her husband in person last weekend. I will post more photos of the urn in a few days so you can see the carving more closely.


Wizard Carving

Wow, hard to believe that it’s September already! I haven’t written a blog all summer, because I’ve been so busy with building projects. But I did get some new gouges for carving this year, as I am getting ready to do a very special project for a dear friend. So here is a fun little practice carving of a wizard in a funky hat. I love playing with using the tool marks to create a very unique “hand carved” look. Continue reading Wizard Carving