Monday, 24 August 2015

How I make my handmade shelving, Part One.

Handmade is often a time consuming process, filled with love and pleasant moments. Let me talk you through how I make my shelves.

I start with the wood itself. I have a lovely local timber merchant and they help me to pick out the pieces with lots of knots in. At first they thought I was a bit crazy, but now they recognise me and have given me a regular discount as they like my product! Shop local folks.



I'm looking for pieces of wood which have a range of knots, but not so many that the wood is weakened and which have knots in just the right places and in a range of sizes. I'm picky.




This was a great piece of wood. One of my favourites from my last batch. It's looking at me.



Then I measure and cut each piece. I make the decisions on size based on each piece of wood, and that is why no two shelves are ever the same, as no two pieces of wood are ever the same.



Here I am in action with my trusty jigsaw.



And then I end up with a pile of pieces of wood. Here, they are laid out in fours so I can make sure I have four sides that fit together. For this reason, the way the wood itself shapes the process, I tend to make quite a lot at once, rather than one by one.




Then it is time to drill the holes. This takes time. Quite a few minutes on each hole. I use different saws and some holes are bigger than others, depending on the size of the original knots.




This is quite a large knot, for example, so I would use quite a large hole. But can you see how the grain of the wood shapes around the knot? This carries on to my finished product and makes the hole in the shelf and the grain of the wood combine for a beautiful shelf.



Essentials - coffee and a drill. Love that they match colour wise.




This is part way through the drilling. Still looking at me.



This is what is removed. They are all different sizes depending on the knots removed. Sometimes I centre them, sometimes I feel they would look better slightly of-centre.

I make a lot of decisions during the process and this is why each shelf is unique.