Summer Is Here

Everything is green.  Summer is finally here, and the weather has been most cooperative.  A few rainy days, but mostly clear, dry and temps in the 70’s.  The sun is up at 4:58 am.  Peonies, lupines, lemon lilies, and Siberian irises are in full bloom.

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This year for the 16th or 18th year in a row, I got accepted into the Early American  Life magazine’s Directory of Traditional American Crafts.  For the first time in all those years, they actually featured one of my pieces:  a Shaker style work counter.  I had submitted 3 pieces, one of which had a bone escutcheon plate.  The bright lights at the magazine changed that to bone pulls on the piece below.  Do those cherry pulls look like bone to you?

DSC_7463I was recruited to do some instant housework on a small house in South Portland: baseboards, trim, and a few new stair treads.    In the shop there were a variety of small projects.  I finally finished the Shaker sewing desk that I started in April.  I don’t think I’ve ever taken that long on any single project.  On the other hand, the parts sat idle for over a month, and there were lots of other time-eating projects.  This particular desk is a smaller version of the usual Shaker sewing desk, only 27″ wide with 4 drawers and a pull out work surface.  I had the original (below, with a birch frame with pine panels and drawers) in my shop back in 2008.

Four Drawer OldThis is the  newer version, in cherry and 2″ taller

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At the end of June I was privileged to  teach a two-day workshop at Lie-Nielsen Toolworks in Warren Maine.  The classroom is gorgeous, with a high 4-sided ceiling and skylight, 15 magnificent workbenches and all the hand tools your heart could desire.

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We made a modified Shaker bench, sturdy and beautiful:  four wedged through tenons seated in a shallow dado, and four dovetailed braces.  All 15 participants managed to complete their benches, although not planed or oiled.  Everyone had a great time, and hopefully learned a lot.  Looking forward to the Lie-Nielsen Open House July 11 & 12.  Make an effort to stop by and chat.  With demos, tours, and as lobster dinner, it’s worth the drive.  Hope to see you!

C. H. Becksvoort © 2014

 

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