Rustic Furniture -- Doug Stowe is a bit of a hero of Living Woods. In a paper entitled Tools, Hands and the Expansion of Intellect, presented to the University of Helsinki (which we hope to publish) he said:
'Tools not only provide the power to shape materials, but frame the dimensions of human intellect. There is magic in the manipulation of real tools and real materials.' As a clarion call to educators around the world he added: 'We are made stupid when our hands are stilled. 'Today in the CSS wood shop, students finished small boxes and began our annual toy making project in which the students make small toys to be distributed through our local food bank. Our middle school students began turning legs for a new bench to be placed in the school office.
His 2009 book Rustic Furniture Basics is the bait to keep hands moving, and to rouse stilled ones. There are power tools and hand tools and planed wood, but also branches and twigs and various types of seating. It has an eclectic range of projects and techniques to follow or to ransack mainly aimed at woodworkers who might like to loosen up a little Green woodworking enthusiasts might find it a bit of a jumble, but there are plenty of tips and some pleasant designs, with numerous photos of the Veritas Tenon Cutter in use, and a simple cardboard box kiln for drying tenon ends. It is the sort of book for adults to use to make furniture with younger craftspeople, introducing them to the joys of making, as Doug intimated in Helsinki; 'By and large we feel better when we take the opportunity to immerse ourselves in the process of creating something from wood.'
Make Magazine is having an "open meetup" to discuss 3-D printing devices. You can register to attend this meeting by following this link: MAKE's First International Meetup to talk about 3D Printers.
If I weren't so busy making things from real wood, I would try to attend. There is a difference between real wood, and plastic, and if you know how to make useful, beautiful, things from real wood, other materials seem cheap in comparison, regardless of how easy they are to make.
Make, fix and create...