Lea leaves us for Slovakia tomorrow


There’s not much to this really, and yet there is. Tomorrow Lea (pronounced Leah) will leave us for the fourth time. She made several things including an unusual replication of the 19th century splay lagged table we made on woodworking masterclasses last year. I think all in all she has been with us for three …

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My past was shaped with a future in mind


Short post today. My world is constantly shaped and reshaped by the interaction of people sharing time and space with me. It’s always been that way since I migrated to the US and after I came home to the UK. Mostly I’ve found my work is always moving that way, moving in pockets and periods …

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For the times they are a changin’


I write about hand methods of woodworking and have done so for two decades and more. I started to write about it because it seemed to me something in that era lacked the dynamism I experienced in my daily work and life designing and making. Change to me seemed a long way off, dauntingly impossible …

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Critique time – Uh oh!


Apprenticing people in the way I do means periodic critiquing; I mean several times in any given day. That’s how we grow. Understand that my way of modern-day apprenticing is to take people in and give them a month of my time, or a year of my time or indeed whatever it takes. Generally I …

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A week in training already gone!


This first week of training for Lea and Sam moved along at lightning speed and they have several training projects under their belts already. it’s going to be interesting to see just what we can get done throughout this month. I’m still encouraged that this kind of less formal ‘work to change’ strategy is about …

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Bench stop addition for kindness


It’s not always easy to accept dings in your work from things like bench dogs and bench stops when the work is pretty much done. There are times when you may not have the luxury of allowing for the possibility of damaging your wood with the prongs too. The pointed prongs might also prevent you from …

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Adding a flush bench stop


Over the weekend I installed a new bench stop to my workbench. We had these on the benches when I was a youngster and they worked well. I was glad to see they were still being made though and so I thought I might use one from time to time. They are quick and easy …

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Looking back 25 Years and beyond


I held my first class 25 years ago this month in Kerrville, Texas for the Texas Arts and Crafts Council at Steiner University. Five years later I had developed a program that subsequently trained over 5,500 individuals from around the world. Seeing what was missing in our modern world, it became a life quest to …

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Joinery dogs video is up on YouTube!


Some time back I wrote a blog on using spring joints for edge joining boards for laminated tops like panels and tables. In that article I showed how to make and use joinery dogs or nail dogs for an alternative method when clamps are scarce. They work amazingly and often better than clamps too. Here …

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