I hope everyone enjoyed their holidays; if you’re the type to make New Year’s resolutions, best of luck with them! Things are back in full swing here at Rosewood, starting in the second week of January with ten students joining us for anywhere from one week to nine months. We started with our Excellence With Hand Tools class, with students taking a board from rough to six-square using only their handplanes. The week ended with Cirvan Hamilton winning our infamous Name That Wood contest, where students were challenged to name as many of the 28 wood species presented as they could.
Excellence With Hand Tools Workshop January 7, 2008
Originally ordered in August of last year, I'm pleased to finally have our Ecogate automated blast gate systems up and running in both machine rooms. It's a luxury to turn on a machine and have the blast gate open and the dust collector start up automatically. Even better, when the machine is turned off, so is the dust collector! I'm sure nobody will miss my harping about turning off the collector when they finish in a machine room...
Our resident craftsmen Vic Tesolin and Nick Moore have been busy. Be sure and check out the February/March issue of Canadian Woodworking Magazine for Vic's modelling career debut. Off camera, he completed a commission for a vanity featuring doors and drawers made with a spectacular book match of mahogany crotch veneer. He's also got his web site up and running at www.victesolin.ca and has been helping with teaching here at Rosewood.
Vic demonstrating hand cut dovetails
Nick has been hopping about the globe, spending time in England over the holidays, and currently visiting the west coast. In between collecting frequent flyer miles and helping around the shop, he's been working diligently on a series of boxes featuring some lovely veneer and marquetry work. He's completed the first of the series, and we can't wait to see the others as he gets them finished.
Along with our regular Craftsmanship Series classes, we have some exciting guest workshops coming up in the near future. Our Veneering Techniques class running February 25th to 29th is being taught by Adrian Ferrazzutti. Adrian's work was recently featured on the back cover of Fine Woodworking #194, and on their online magazine. You can see more of his outstanding work on his website at www.adrianferrazzutti.com. As of this writing, we still have 3 spaces in Adrian's class. Consider joining us to learn techniques for using commercial and shop sawn veneers that will open up new design possibilities and species unavailable in solid woods.
Two of Adrian Ferrazzutti's veneered boxes
We're excited to be offering two new courses this spring with renowned furniture designer/maker Michael Fortune (www.michaelfortune.com). Running for five days from March 31st to April 4th, Design for Furnituremakers will show you how to find inspiration for new forms from a wide range of sources, then refine and develop them to create cohesive furniture designs of your own. Participants will benefit from a field trip to visit Ottawa museums, where Michael will share some of his favorite sources of inspiration for new design ideas. Regardless of your current skill level, you will come away from this course excited with the possibilities for new directions in your work.
Coffee Table by Michael Fortune
On Saturday, April 5th, Michael will present a one day workshop on Photographing Your Work. Using simple, inexpensive equipment, you'll learn how to photograph your furniture and achieve professional looking results. This course is ideal for those seeking to develop a professional portfolio, enter competitions, submit work for publication, produce advertising or web site materials or simply document work before it leaves their shop.
We are once again delighted to be joined by author, teacher and consummate craftsman Garrett Hack, this time to Build An Elegant Demilune Table. In this six day course running from April 28th to May 3rd, you will each build your own table, with opportunities to apply distinctive details that will set your work apart. Not only will you create a beautiful piece of furniture in this class, you'll also expand your skills in the use of both machinery and hand tools, taught by one of the modern masters of fine furniture making.
Garrett Hack (right) working with student to fit drawer
One of my hopes for Rosewood's future includes a dedication to teaching fine woodworking, with less emphasis on selling tools than there has been in the past. Our first step toward this goal was the creation of our student tool kits, so that everyone attending the school would have access to a kit of top quality hand tools, regardless of what they already owned. Having assembled those kits, our next step involves eliminating a large number of the products that we carried in the "tool store" in the past. We will continue to sell everything that we include in our kits (for those who would prefer to buy their own rather than borrow) as well as some hard to find items we are particularly fond of, but by and large we will leave the selling of tools to others dedicated to that business.
To that end, we are having a tool sale. Many of these items are being sold at our cost or below, so there are some real bargains to be had on some top quality hand tools, books and even authentic Rosewood apparel! Please look over our price list, and call Mary Anne if we can send you something or provide you with further information.
Finally, we will be at the Canadian Home Workshop Show at the Toronto International Center at 6900 Airport Road from February 29th to March 2nd. We're hoping to see our friends from the Toronto area while we are there, so please be sure and stop by. And of course, anyone travelling in the Almonte area is always welcome to stop by the school for a visit.
Wishing you all the best for 2008,
© 2008 Rosewood Studio