Category Archives: Ornaments and Other Turnings

Turning Off Cuts

2016-01-24 13.22.44I still had a small piece of that spalted oak sitting around basically taking up space. The grain was much too nice to chunk it so I arrived at a shape that both the wood and I could work with. There was a lot of black in this piece and the grain was all over the map which made for a pretty interesting dye job. It also needed a bit of a base to keep it stable so with the lid and base I used some cherry off cuts making this whole bowl a scrap project. 2016-01-24 13.23.03There was a lot of “rippling” in the finish due to the nature of oak so I had to wet sand after every 4 coats of lacquer. I think I may have to go another 2 or 3 yet to get the totally flat surface.


I Guess I’m Just Nuts

acornsThese acorns were a fun little project — a skill-builder as Capt. Eddie would say. I had gone out under my Oak tree (which was actually a cutting from the Wye Oak if you are familiar with that) to pick up a real acorn but as I suspected, the squirrels have been busy and all I found were empty caps.

It is hard to see the texture on the caps in the photo but I had picked up a texturing tool and this was the perfect venue for it. One is walnut and sycamore and the other is cherry and maple. Both have little hidden cavities perfect for giving maybe a diamond ring at Christmas.

It came from outer space?

spinyI had not tried one of the “spiny” urchin shells and happened to find a nice store with tons of shells down in Chincoteague this week. With the irregular surface on this it was hard to get a “gap-free” fit but the overall look is pretty good. I wish I had picked up a couple more while down there (but there’s always the on-line stores!)

The shell game

IMG_0359I have made a ton of these urchin sea shell ornaments. The key to making these spectacular is a delicate finial. I had seen some done that were balky looking so I kept turning ’til I was satisfied This particular is made from teak since we generate a lot of scrap teak down at the yard but have have turned them out of a lot of scrap wood I find in the shop left over from other projects. Approx 4″ tall.

I found a lot of ways of doing these but my personal favorite is Brian Havens’ method — it made the most sense.

For our feathered friends

IMG_0358This little bird house ornament is turned out of a piece of my neighbors silver maple that was cut down last fall. I just grabbed a couple of branches to have some to play with and this little project was perfect. I left just a hint of the bark on to give it a rustic look. Now if I could only find some wee little birds to live in it. Approximately 3″ tall.

Just for fun

flowersI saw someone turning wooden flowers and thought I’d give them a try. Two are cedar and the colored one is poplar. It is possible to get them real thin but almost impossible to sand them properly. But I don’t suppose real flowers have mirror finish either.  They are definitely a test of patience. The vase was turned from the heart of a rotten log out in the garden. The wood was “just wood” — I have no idea what it started it’s life as!