Saturday, March 7, 2009

New (Less Complicated) Lovespoon - Part 1

I know, I know. Last week I said I was going to give lovespoons a rest and do some work on my Santas. But then I got an idea for a new lovespoon. Once I sketched it out, I had to start work on it. Way too often my enthusiasm overwhelms my patience. Any how, I drew the pattern full size and traced it onto a nominal 12"x2"x1" poplar board using graphite transfer paper.

Since, other than a hand drill, I don't use noisy power tools like band saws and scroll saws, I have to have work-arounds. Cutting through 24" of wood with a coping saw is a daunting task even with the super-aggressive blade I have in it. So I took my Japanese hand saw and cut from the edge of the board to the edge of the pattern. THEN I used my coping saw to cut off the resulting tabs. Watching those tabs fall to the floor really made me feel I was zipping along. Whether I was or not.

Once I had all the tabs cut off, I drilled the holes in the portions of the design that will be pierced and broke out the Japanese saw again to rip half the thickness off the handle. Since the joint between the bowl of the spoon and it's handle is so thin in plan, I left plenty of thickness in the back to strengthen it.

I filled out the design in pencil. The roundels are to be spaces for initials and dates. They will have chip-carved borders. You can see I messed up the border design on the top roundel. Luckily all I have to do to fix it is erase and redraw. The cross hatched areas will be kolrossed and the space just above the bowl will have a chip-carved star.

At this point I have just over an hour invested in this piece, exclusive of the design time. And my shoulder is sore from all the sawing! That's OK. It's good, cardiovacular exercise, and, Lord knows, I need more of that.

So, enough for today. I'll have my next post up in a couple of days continuing with this spoon. I hope by then I'll have figured out how to post photos in a more logical manner, so the sequence isn't all screwed up as it was with this post.

Thanks for dropping in. Until next time, let the chips fly!


  1. Thank God for enthusiasm (Enthusiasm (ἐνθουσιασμός enthousiasmos) originally meant inspiration or possession by a divine afflatus or by the presence of a god. We'd never commit to the work otherwise.

    I've got a ST Francis carving in walnut waiting in the wings for over a year.
    These new ideas and carvings keep cutting in line, demanding attention first. For the carving of Stay with Me, I realized if I didn't begin it immediately, the little girl of 5 would be long gone in a year...

    Jumping in is is finishing.

  2. As a 2nd year apprentice I got a lot out of your detailed work approach to the spoons. Wish to Hell I could find more detailed work progress in carvings.
    Until then its try it and see.
    Thanks for the time you put into this.

  3. John, go to
    and join the forums. There is a section there just for Works in Progress. I suggest you look for any posts by Doris, a German lady who is a fantastic carver. She often does detailed photos at various stages of her carvings.