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Sunday 29 May 2011

Spectacular Spalting

First off like many bloggers,at the moment my comments are messed up too. So to ken who asked if I lived near the river in a previous post .The river is only 1/4 of a mile from us. Gales blew hard this week putting out power lines and damaging homes ,buildings and many trees .
When the weather improved I walked through the spruce and pine absorbing what what was around me .Watching the stream running back to clear, after heavy rains muddied the waters. Lush ferns added their fresh green foliage into the the mix of spring. At home in the shed I finished a stool with a very unusual spalted beech seat, the variations in the grain are quite spectacular,3 ash legs split from a small log then tidied up with a draw knife then spokeshaves ,wedged tenons fasten the legs to the seat and hold up this stool up . After sanding then more sanding until as smooth as a pebble it was finished with my favourite wax. I also have a idea for a chair that's a bit more obscure than usual more about this in the future:)

Saturday 21 May 2011


I wandered down to the river trail this evening to find that some of the spring growth is the same height as me , 6' in places that's tall for may. But plenty rain after three weeks of sunshine must have given them all a boost.
Blossom on the Horse Chestnut stand out in the show of spring , where all the trees and flowers show off their secrets they only let us see them for a short time so its good to get out and see them. Hidden in the under growth are the bluebells a favorite of mine the scent of all this new growth is very pleasant while walking in the rain and watching the raindrops make rings in the river.
While walking around places like this I see shapes and get ideas from nature that I can use in the furniture I make :)

Monday 16 May 2011

Horse And Saddle

While out cycling the other evening I passed a heavy working horse mare with a new born foal .I like these big horses that worked the land in years gone by, ploughing fields and drilling seed to keep the nation fed.
And heres a little stool that I finished the other day with a random shape spalted beech top which reminds me of saddle leather, and 3 peeled ash legs keep it from falling over :)

Monday 9 May 2011

Seldom Seen

I meandered down a path the other day while out cycling into a nice little bit of woodland. I pass this wood whilst driving along the motorway and "always thought I should take a look" anyway I did and along with good trails and a nice stream some fine looking trees. I found a hedge that had recently been laid, this is when the stems are cut nearly through leaving just enough holding to keep them growing. Straight stout stems are used as stakes to hold down the newly cut hedging.Stakes are also and driven into any gaps , and then springy saplings and sucker growth are twisted through the stakes and the pushed over hedging. This is something I have always wanted to try, hedge laying is very old rural craft which is seldom seen nowadays .Hard work with thorns in abundance, My Grandfather lost an eye to a whipping thorn while laying a hedge in Southern Ireland.Maybe one day I will pass at the right time and catch the Master Hedger at work :)

Saturday 7 May 2011

Beside The Sea

Anstruther is where we got to today, on the east neuk of fife. The east neuk is the coastal region.On the way we passed through lots of seaside villages like Pittenweem, St Monan's ,Lundin Links and Largo all beautiful places lots of old houses and well kept gardens .The weather was in our favour when we left but soon the mist and rain came in.
Of course we had fish and chips followed by scrumptious ice cream from the Anstruther fish and chip bar and restaurant , award winning fish and chips. which made up for the weather. A few fishing boats were in the harbour along with yachts a nice place to watch the world go by .
They have a lifeboat station to visit,boat trips out to the Isle of May and the fishing museum. In the north sea off the east coast, rich fishing grounds provided huge catches of herring. The museum tells the history of the trade and the people. Then a look at the tide crashing in before heading home:)

Tuesday 3 May 2011


Back to work today with the sun still shining I don't think its rained for a fortnight .While I was on holiday I managed a bit of time in the shed. Making a stool with a cherry seat and hazel legs . And a small oak chair, which let me use up some oak that's been gathering dust for long time. Here they are shining in the sun:)