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No Conventional Jobsite

“It was clear from the beginning that this was no conventional jobsite – no roar of a generator or shriek of a Skilsaw drowning out conversation. There was nothing here to be heard but the steady thumping of axes, the whisper of saws, and joyful laughter (with the occasional – and somehow fitting – exception of a jobsite speaker playing the Fugees, courtesy of Loïc). It was a rare moment in which there wasn’t someone sharing knowledge or a story with others. It would be easy to mistake this project for some kind of reenactment of olde-timey ways, but it was nothing of the sort. This week was a demonstration of convivial and sustainable manual work that is just as...

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New Release! Video Course of “Greenwood Spoon Carving”

  In our brand-new online course, professional spoon carver Emmet Van Driesche, walks you through the entire process of carving a spoon from green wood. Emmet is such an exceptional teacher – he knows his stuff and is articulate and approachable – and we are so glad we’ve asked him to do this course. His 2023 book Greenwood Spoon Carving is the most helpful and thorough we’ve ever seen, and this video series takes Emmet’s teaching to another level. While his book is amazingly detailed and covers so much ground that you’d never get in a class, you also need to simply see how it’s done. This course assumes no prior experience, yet takes you right into high-level, but accessible...

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The “Four-tool Philosophy”

“As the unique traits of every culture shape its woodworking traditions (and vice versa), the North Woods traits of adaptability and mobility wove themselves into the way indigenous craft evolved. The tools themselves developed to meet these criteria, being portable, versatile, and endlessly repairable. They could all be used one-handed, with the other hand (often in conjunction with the body and feet) providing the necessary workholding. Only four tools (with variations of each) composed the “tool-box” of the Northern maker, and every necessary wooden object (from spoons, bowls, and snowshoes up to canoes and shelters) could be made using this minimalist kit. Modern practitioners of this ancient means sometimes refer to it as the “Four-tool Philosophy.” Nick Dillingham, a skilled...

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