New book and DVD successfully received

Except Tuesdays. The new display at the woodworking school has much lovely colour and worked well as a backdrop at the show. With the school being in the National Trust’s Penrhyn Castle I like to keep up the standard and even go beyond where possible. The Book and DVDs are now selling and with great…

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OK! Back to working wood

So I bought this new fillister/rebate plane today, well actually, an old one that’s been pretty much unused by all appearances. I really like the substance of its heavier casting and the well engineered parts. You may not be able to see but some features include thick chrome finish to the different parts that has…

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What’s your sell-by date

With all the ridiculous talk of our biggest UK apprenticing provider being a massive supermarket chain you can begin to realise the problem we craftsmen are up against when people are hardwired to think stacking shelves and recycling the boxes tidily even merits the use of the title let alone provide the substantial apprenticeship it takes…

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Training generations in real work

In filming interviews with and talking to skilled workmen and women, I framed some questions surrounding future generations of young emerging artisans. It was evident at the European Woodworking Show that there were actually no trainees there. I talked to one young lady who was carving a rose in some lime (bass) wood. Her mother…

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Craft observation II

Craft observation II A couple of other things my son Joseph reminded me about are influences from parental and educational spheres: The parents influence on their children’s choices is very much governed by their own aspirations and not necessarily the children’s. In most cases the influence is toward higher education because of course the belief…

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Craft observation – I

Craft observation – I   I spent much of my time split fairly evenly between teaching the Masterclasses, interviewing other artisans and observing people. In all three areas the single most significant reality was that there was a whole group of people absolutely missing. It was the unique group that, prior to the 1920s, would…

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European Woodworking Show recap – more to come

Briefly for now… …I just got back from the show today after teaching the Masterclasses. I gained so much from the show and not just from woodworking, though that was really valuable all round. I came home fully inspired by just being there even though the schedule I had was so very demanding. That’s almost…

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Great Show for European woodworkers

Well, today was an incredible day of demonstrations all around. Got to visit some with Garrett Hack from Vermont and will be interviewing him on film tomorrow. Lots of really good stuff to see and experience. I was shocked at the full-house Masterclasses with lots of support in ever one of them. I have picures…

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Are young people sold out?

It’s rhetorical, yes. Are young people sold out by generations ahead of them? Are they sold out for their future? Have they been sold it? Have they enough hope and aspiration to ‘buy-in’ to their future? Traveling across country to Essex gave me a change from my usual routine and some time to reflect on…

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European Woodworking Show Starts

Last post before the show. We are loaded and on the way this morning. So looking forward to the launch of the video series and the book signing. Our new booth was completed last night so you will get to see lots of colour and of course furniture pieces from The Course. I cannot recall how many…

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