A place for me to display some of the varied projects that come out of my shop, as well as to "talk" about some of my experiences working with wood.

Tuesday, 12 May 2015

HANDWORKS 2015 - Now you have my attention...

I have been attending Woodworking in America (WIA) the last few years, which for several years was held in Cincinnati and last year in Winston-Salem. If you wanted to shake hands and chat with the top North American hand tool builders that was the place to go. However, in the past few years more and more of the best have been staying away from WIA, and in my view the value of attending WIA is diminishing. Its a great woodworking show, but not if hand tools are your main interest.

Enter Handworks... 

...in 2013 the first incarnation of a Hand Tool only gathering was held in the historic Amana Colonies near Cedar Rapids, Iowa. By all accounts it was a huge success and as a result is coming back as a biannual event this year. In all likelihood, at the expense of WIA, I am heading to the Midwest this weekend; like the hand tool lemming that I am, to see many of the players who have abandoned WIA. Some I will be meeting for the first time.

Studley Toolchest
There are also a few fellow online bloggers and acquaintances that I will be meeting for the first time, which is always a fun experience.

I have one woodworking poster in my shop and have had it as long as I have had a shop (over 25 years). The picture is of the Studley tool-chest which woodworkers refer to in revered tones. This tool-chest and the bench that goes with it will be on a very rare public display at Handworks 2015 and I have my ticket to see it.

A new book on the tool-chest has just been published and I expect that I will have to grab a copy. For me this artifact has provided much inspiration over the years, I am glad I am finally getting the chance to see it in person.

My sense is that this event is somewhat similar to the European Woodworking Biannual show held in Essex, in the South of England in September. Right now my plan is to also attend this weekend event which is held inside a  12th century wooden barn - yea 12th century!! I live in a province that was the first settlement of Europeans in North America only 410 years ago - we have something to learn about old stuff here!!

Looking forward to the trip and the chance to catch up with some friends; and perhaps make few new ones.



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