Rosewood Studio School of Fine Woodworking; Tools, Courses, Workshops and Instruction

News Article


Rosewood Studio Newsletter June 2013


Spring at Rosewood


    Hot on the heels of our first twelve week program of 2013 (wrapped up April 5th) furniture designer and maker Michael Fortune returned to “Build a Cool Table” with four students keen to create a unique and extraordinary piece of their own design. Everyone enjoyed lots of one-on-one time with Michael, with the goal of developing and refining their design to the point of a finished mock up in five days. By the end of the week, Brian, David, Gregg and John were for the most part ready to begin working on their finished pieces. Michael and I look forward to seeing the completed tables – but hey, no pressure guys!


      David Jones working on his mock up   Gregg Thompson's mocked up table


      The following week, Christopher Schwarz made his debut teaching at Rosewood with The Anarchist’s Tool Chest class. By Friday afternoon we had 9 tool chests near completion. Everyone involved appeared to have a good time, not the least of which the owners of Perth’s public houses, who are no doubt still gleefully counting the spoils from a week’s worth of “ale tasting”. 

    Saturday and Sunday held no rest for “The Schwarz”, as another group came in to build a shaker inspired wall cabinet using only their hand tools. Four of the eight students in attendance were named “James”, but it didn’t create as much trouble as you might have thought. It was great having Chris here, and we already have standing requests for a place in his next class whenever he can return.


  A week to catch our breath and re-stock the lumber racks, and we were into Excellence With Hand Tools, then Mastering Machinery. Pictured here, our “Excellence” class hailed from as far away as the Yukon. Thanks David and Helene, for driving an awfully long way to join us.    


      Finally, Garrett Hack returned from Thetford, Vermont to teach Tables Without Reservations the week of May 13th. Tapered, splayed legs and angled tenon shoulders had some people worried at the beginning of the week, but Garrett’s easy-going instruction style got everyone headed down the right path, and folks left Friday with refined design skills and new confidence in working with angles other than ninety degrees. 

    Before letting him go home though, we had Garrett teach a two day Decorative Details class on Saturday and Sunday. Garrett demonstrated and students had the opportunity to practice techniques for incorporating both straight and curved string inlay, beading, the use of scratch stocks, creating and applying banding and the inlay of various materials other than wood.  

      Derrick Du Toit refines the mortises in Garrett's "Tables Without Reservations" 


Handmade Hand Planes

        Pierre Rousseau, who completed our 12 week program in the fall of 2011, returned last weekend for the Decorative Details class with Garrett Hack, and brought with him some sweet bronze infill shoulder planes he made, complete with dovetailed soles. He made some beautiful wooden spokeshaves while he was here, and after seeing these planes, I can’t wait to see what he tackles next. Nice work Pierre! 



New Summer Classes

      We created our new Basics of Fine Woodworking class to encourage folks to join us over the summer when things have traditionally been very quiet here. It worked! The July 8th to 19th session booked up quickly, so we have added a second session running August 12th to the 23rd. The material covered in these two weeks serves as the prerequisite for most of our other classes, and is offered this summer at a discount of 25% from our regular price. Check your calendar, and call Mary Anne to book your space. 

Father’s Day Gifts

    Looking for a Father’s Day gift your woodworking Dad will love? Or perhaps you are a father, and have all the ties you really need? (Honestly, do people really still buy their dads ties for Father’s Day?) You could casually leave your browser open to this page, but if you are going to be that blatant, you might just as well come right out and say it “You know kids, I’d love to take a class at Rosewood”. We can do gift certificates in any denomination redeemable towards classes here at the school. Call Mary Anne, and let her help make you a hero on Father’s Day.

How About a Free Handplane?

    With summer just beginning, it’s hard to believe that we will be starting our fall classes in just over three month’s time. I mention this because the deadline for our early booking gift for Six and Twelve Week classes is June 7th. Give us a few months notice that you are coming, and we will give you a great new hand plane. Check it out. 
Jed Thorson adjusting his hand planeJed Thorson adjusting his hand plane



Rosewood’s New Shop Tech

        Nick Moore, who helped out as our shop tech for the past five years or so, is getting settled into his new workshop down the road in Drummond Centre. Hans Mueller, who finished his program here in April, will be staying on for a while to lend a hand as our new shop tech. He showed up with a full set of hand tools when he started, and aside from a few manic moments while Chris Schwarz was here, he’s a steady and painstaking worker. I look forward to having him around as my “right-hand man” in the months ahead.  
  Our new shop tech, Hans “Wilson” Mueller    



Thoughts on Woodworking Jigs

    OK, first it was Facebook, then Twitter. Now we have a Google + page as well. I think we’ve got to stop here (please!) Anyway, if you would care to put us in your circles on Google + (I think I’m saying this right?), I promise to try and write or post something worth your time every now and then. Here are some thoughts about woodworking jigs. As always, I welcome your comments.



     In closing, while “dust and sweat and blood” may be a bit over the top, I think all of us who face challenges in creating can take something from the following quote from Theodore Roosevelt.

     “It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood; who strives valiantly; who errs, who comes short again and again, because there is no effort without error and shortcoming; but who does actually strive to do the deeds; who knows great enthusiasms, the great devotions; who spends himself in a worthy cause; who at the best knows in the end the triumph of high achievement, and who at the worst, if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly, so that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who neither know victory nor defeat.” – Theodore Roosevelt


    Wishing you a great summer,

                                                    Ron Barter





Posted 2013-05-27 | Last Modified 2016-03-03 07:54:11