Mike spent a number of very cold and windy days in December under our make-shift shelter burning some Eastern White Cedar siding to create shou-sugi-ban. This is a Japanese process by which the material is partially burnt to create a more rot-resistant and lasting siding. The aesthetic is also beautiful. Thanks Mike. Burning like a boss.
12:00 am • 17 February 2014 • 7 notes
Once the top is glued up, using a guide pin in the middle of the underside, a circle jig is used with a router to cut the top.
12:00 am • 16 February 2014
I had the immense pleasure of meeting Carlos Motta this past September when he visited Toronto for the first time. He is one of my original inspirations and heroes with regards to furniture design and woodworking. After listening to him speak, I was lucky enough to meet Carlos and his beautiful wife Sibylla and we ended up having dinner with them. What a completely amazing couple. Carlos is so down to earth and kind and generous. An incredible night that I will never forget. He was also generous enough to leave us a copy of his new book, Life As I see It - unique and beautiful, as are his other creations. Please take a moment to appreciate one of Brazil’s treasures. An amazing artist, an impressive man.
12:01 am • 14 February 2014
I have been commissioned to build 3 pieces for an office. This is the top glued up for a 6’ round Walnut boardroom table. The base will be a hot-rolled steel drum with a laminated Walnut foot I will describe in a future post.
12:00 am • 12 February 2014
The 2 desks are installed in the office. One side of the desk is supported by a solid hard Maple console with stainless steel legs and risers and the other leg is the waterfall. The material is truly unique and brings a special warmth to the space.
12:00 am • 10 February 2014 • 6 notes
The spalted Maple has been glued up and then cut across its width to create the waterfall leg. We are testing the mitre joint before glue-up.
12:00 am • 7 February 2014 • 1 note
After building the beautiful Walnut boardroom table for my client, I was commissioned to build a number of pieces for their new office. This spalted Maple comes from a sawer out near Dundas, Ontario. The spalting is a fungus that works its way into the wood, creating beautiful black lines that travel along the grain. These boards will become one of 2 desks with a waterfall leg.
12:00 am • 5 February 2014
Back in the summer, a client of mine asked me to replace a table top on his exterior table. This reclaimed Douglas Fir comes from one of many industrial salvage sites across Ontario. Many of the buildings built in the early part of the 1900’s are being taken down now and the massive Douglas Fir beams brought from BC to build them are still in excellent condition. Exciting to see them starting a third life.
12:00 am • 2 February 2014 • 1 note
….and the launching happened outside. After some alterations to our technique, we quickly got very proficient at launching the balloons. In fact, we almost hit one of the school’s neighbours across the road because we were able to launch them so far! Great team work and great way to end the first Studio Lab at RSGC. Thanks to Kelly and the boys. Until next year…
12:00 am • 29 January 2014
In our final lab, the boys and I built water balloon launchers. For the balloon holder we used funnels and surgical tubing with shop-built handles for elastic propulsion. After struggling to get the holes drilled in the funnels and assembling the surgical tubing and handles, we discussed launching strategy. Where does the launcher stand? How hard and in what direction should he pull the funnel? How do the handle holders stand? How do we keep each other from getting hurt? How do we get the balloon to go farthest? First we discuss then we test. Direct experience and experimentation has been our method throughout the lab. The answers come from doing. We do, we learn, we adjust.
Assembly was done inside….
12:00 am • 27 January 2014
It hasn’t been only fun and games. The studio has been buzzing with activity too. Delivered this boardroom table in mid June. Made from solid quarter-cut Walnut and brass. Each of the pieces used for the top was tapered, each to a unique set of dimensions. The linear nature of the quartered Walnut is made less linear by the tapered shape. At the edges the grain runs out completely. The compound angle of the legs was tricky, especially because there is no skirt - the legs connect directly with the top.
12:00 am • 25 January 2014 • 3 notes
It was a challenge to get the joinery to work perfectly. Each pair of legs is connected by a Walnut stretcher with double-wedged, through mortise and tenon. The brass stretcher that connects each pair across the table’s length is recessed in an accurately drilled hole and pinned with a tiny brass peg (see previous posts). The last photo shows the beauty of the grain and the bevel on the underside of the table top. A truly crafted piece.
12:00 am • 25 January 2014 • 4 notes
Floating washers in tinfoil boats. What’s the best shape and size for a boat? The record was 26 washers….and then it sunk.
Is balloon propulsion a viable option for the future? Maybe not, but the more air you blow into the balloon, the faster and farther the straw flies down the string.
12:00 am • 23 January 2014
The legs have undergone their final shaping and are now glued in their pairs and glued to the table top. The brass stretchers have also been glued, pinned and screwed to the bottom of the table top. The system is extremely sturdy. When the pairs of legs are glued together using the Walnut stretcher, pairs of Walnut wedges are forced into the slots cut into the tenon ends. Once the glue has dried, the wedges will be trimmed and each through tenon will be carved to its final shape.
12:00 am • 22 January 2014
Leslie Williamson has a new book coming out this spring. In it she describes European masters of midcentury design through her exceptional photographs. She started the process months ago on Kickstarter. Looking forward to this one.
12:00 am • 21 January 2014 • 18 notes