Back in the saddle

Ok, I know I’ve been slacking where the blog is concerned. Well, not really. Between teaching classes and trying to actually keep up with orders for furniture I haven’t gotten much sleep this last month or so. Fortunately, that means there’s TONS for me to talk about here on the blog. So, tomorrow you can expect another oxbow installment.

From that point forward, I want to pick up the discussion on connoisseurship again. There’s been a lot of things that have occurred in the last few weeks that have continually brought this topic into my daily discussions.

I delivered some furniture south of Atlanta and on my trip home my wife and I stopped in Charlottesville, VA for a few days (can you believe it? a furniture maker on vacation…a rare sight indeed). We took the tours at Monticello, Montpellier and Ash-Lawn Highland (those are the homes of Thomas Jefferson, James Madison and James Monroe…if you didn’t already know that). Three very distinct homes of three very distinct presidents, each with it’s own flair and state of restoration. On this trip I wasn’t able to take photographs but I may be able to manage it in the near future. So, I’ll be trying to dig up stock photos and give you my impressions of the three homes. If you’ve never been to Charlottesville, these three places are worth the trip alone. Since this is “A woodworker’s journal” I’m going to talk a bit about the architecture of the three places even though I’m only a period furniture maker. I believe there’s wood in the architecture…

Additionally, my first article in Popular Woodworking has been set for the December issue and they actually want me to write some more in 2009. So, subscribe now and avoid the rush!

Also, Jonathan and Judy over at WoodWorks have contracted me to teach a seminar each day at their three woodworking shows this Fall and Winter. The shows will be held in: York, PA; Novi, MI; and Springfield, MA. Their listing of seminars is already up and they are taking orders for attendees at the classes. If you plan on trekking out to one of the three shows, make sure you sign up for the seminars now to take advantage of the $10 savings. My seminars are going to be on a couple of interesting and different topics. I’m going to give a class on the three essential power tools for the beginning woodworker. In this class I’ll be not only telling you what I would start out with if I were just getting started in woodworking but how to multi-task with these three tools so you don’t need to go out and spend a fortune on single use equipment. The other class is going to be pure fun. It’s on secret drawers, hidden compartments and locking mechanisms for furniture. I’m going to demonstrate and show numerous examples of hidden compartments and how to make a bunch of different locking mechanisms.

Lastly, we have the 2009 schedule of classes just about ready to publish. 2009 looks to be a really great year for our woodworking school. We have some really great projects lined up and we even have a famous guest mentor lined up for next year. Our first DVD (Dovetailing…what else?) should be in production in the next few weeks and ready for the Fall woodworking shows. With a little luck, we may even have more than one DVD available by the Fall shows. Thanks to everyone who has come out so far to participate in our educational endeavors. It is because all of you took a chance on this fledgling woodworking school that we are trying to raise the bar for next year and expand our educational efforts to include DVD’s and woodworking articles for Popular Woodworking. Without your tremendous support this year (and we’re not finished yet, I know) we would not have had so much fun or pursued this venture very far. The best part of the school is seeing the students accomplish things they never thought possible all while having LOTS of fun doing it. If you haven’t taken one of our classes, you really are missing out on a lot of fun. Just ask any of our students (and yes, that’s the cue for you guys who have taken classes to post something here about your experience…I can always delete the off color stuff). A special thanks to Mark Gross for pushing me for YEARS to start teaching and to Glen Huey for the same kick in the pants where writing articles is concerned.

See you tomorrow!

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One thought on “Back in the saddle

  1. […] few posts ago I mentioned a stop at Monticello. Today, I’d like to elaborate a bit. The trip was definitely worth the […]

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