I decided to put more effort into the interviews this year. I was honored to do an interview with Cole Holliday about his carving. I especially enjoyed and definitely could relate to this comment from him, “Life before I carved my first spoon was so different. Basically, learning how to carve has been a life-changing thing. My life has not been the same since being introduced to “the way of the knife,” and for that, I am so grateful.”
Besides carving, I’ve been making some country wine. I did a second racking of ginger wine for next year. It’s lovely mulled, and perfect for the winter months.
I’ve been making wood “river rocks” from the leftover bits and bobs of wood that are lying around. They are a little something to hold onto when worry or the world seems too heavy. As much as I love function, sometimes the form is enough.
It’s been a cold winter, so I’ve been carving a lot in the kitchen. I think the kitchen workshop has a firm place in the sloyd tradition. Tonight, I’m carving butter spreaders, drinking rum, eating brownies, and listening to Bach on the radio.
I carved the fifth spoon from applewood for my 52 spoons project.
In January, I shared how I wanted to create a section on this website where people could share the stories and images of their favorite spoons.
This is my favorite spoon. I bought it from Rye Hewitt, son of writer and farmer Ben Hewitt. Side note – Rye has a pretty cool last name for a spoon carver. I got the spoon years before I ever thought I would enter the world of spoon carving. I had read a post on Ben’s thoughtful blog, and the simplicity of Rye’s spoons drew me in. It felt like the chance to support a young craftsman and get something real for my kitchen.
The spoon has been a workhorse. I’ve used it to make many jars of jam in the summer and many bottles of country wine. I’ve stirred pizza sauce, bread dough, and much much more. When I first held this spoon, I had no idea that I would be whittling away my days now, trying to make something similar to what captivated me so much then.
I hope someday that I can do what Rye did for me and make something so beautiful and useful that it plants a seed in someone else to start making things too.
For Valentines Day, I made my wife a new cooking spoon from pearwood as a gift. Perfect for making preserves this summer. I love cooking spoons for their simple functionality. I added a little acorn finial to practice, but my finial carving has a long way to go. This is my seventh spoon in my 52 Spoons Project.
I made some spreaders for friends in Decorah. I’m almost sure it’s walnut, but the wood is so soft. More likely, it’s butternut.
I picked up a “new” drawknife for about $1.50 at a rummage sale. Might be old, there’s still some fire in the iron.
I took a day off from work so I could do real work. I love my day job, but I have to say I love spoon carving even more. My hat is off to those of you who took the risk and developed the skills to do your woodworking full-time. I’m confident it has its challenges, but on days like this, I wish I was in your shoes. Maybe someday I’ll join you after many years of persistence, dedication, discipline, and knowledge.