Sunday, 27 April 2014

A good day spoon carving

I was contacted by about my spoon carving course by a lady who lives near by to me. 
Susan had never carved spoons before or used an axe to carve with, so was a complete beginner. Susan is however very creative as she makes cards and driftwood clocks, so her mind was very open to design and ideas.
We started off by talking about different woods to use for spoons and the benefits and characteristics of the woods.

We then went on to look at some spoons by other makers and some of my own to show the different designs and functionality of the spoons.

The first step was beginning the process of carving a spoon, starting with axe work and the safe way of using the axe.
We also covered using a hand saw to create stops for the axe, these stops are used around the delicate area where the neck meets the bowl, this stops the axe from breaking through the bowl.

This is a great safe and fast way for beginners to overcome this area.

The next area was to use the knife safely by the various grips. I find that with practise all of the grips can be picked up well, however a couple of them are picked up quicker, this is partly due to the familiar way of using a knife in the kitchen or in everyday life. Others are unfamiliar due to the nature of the grasp, like cutting towards yourself. With good technique and practise these grips are very efficient and very safe however for beginners it's overcoming the fears to begin with.

Susan did very well with both the axe and the knife and found that the smaller sized sloyd knife a better size.

A very happy student with her first spoons and hopefully well on her way to producing many more.


  1. Had really been looking forward to this session and was not disappointed! Simon even turned up for the session with a leg in plaster and on crutches! I learned so much from him- theoretical and practical. Can't believe I walked away with items that actually looked like spoons! Have today tidied the spoons up and intend to have a go at kolrosing on them. Bought a small sloyd knife and bowl carver from Simon and have today ordered an axe online so that I can get to work with the logs he gave me to bring home. Also just had to buy one of his lovely spoons- couldn't stop handling it during the coffee breaks! Would certainly recommend a session there at Vernon Mill with Simon. His enthusiasm is infectious! Thank you.

  2. Really glad you enjoyed the course it was a pleasure to teach you. Keep up the spoon carving and let me know how you get on, I look forward to seeing the spoons you produce.