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Rosewood Studio
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School of Fine Woodworking - we want to help you create something extraordinary.
School of Fine Woodworking - we want to help you create something extraordinary.

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Rosewood alumnus Terry Gibbon recently moved into a new shop. His daughter gave him this door mat for it.
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While attending a 12 week design/build program here, Peter Coolican decided, against my better judgement, that he wanted to create a chair. I explained that a chair was about the most difficult piece of furniture he could tackle, and that perhaps he might try something simpler for a first piece of his own design. But Peter was insistent, and I'm glad that he was. He put a lot of work into it, and this is the chair he created. The moral of this story of course, is to never let anyone tell you that you can't do something!

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"Follow Your Passion And Success Will Become An Easier Journey, No Matter How Hard Is The Path." Luis Galarza

Well said Steve Jobs!
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#inspirationalquote   #successquotes   #successtips   #lifelessons   #stevejobs   #motivationalquotes   #lifetalks  
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We often refer to "the 10,000 hours" that it takes to master something. As it relates to building furniture, a lot of makers will agree that after about five years of steadily practicing their craft, things started to gel, and earning a living actually seemed like something they were going to be able to do. 

In an interesting Ted talk, author Josh Kaufman makes a case for "the  20 hours" that it takes to learn how to do something. His point is well made, and hopefully will encourage more people to push away from whatever distractions lie in their way, and get on to learning something they really want to do. Watch the video, then have at it!

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Really great to see you walking the walk Peter! Folks like to talk about making furniture - you guys are putting it out there. Good on you.
Seat wave in the heat wave... Veneering the last of these seats this morning.
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Special Announcement/ Coming Soon: We are currently working on a "Tonewoods Section" for our website! In a few weeks you will be able to shop for your next guitar body, uke set, etc from the comfort of your own home!!! I will keep you posted on our progress! ...Pictured is my ukulele: Made from Hearne Hardwoods' wood (of course) Curly Koa with an Gabon Ebony finger board, by the very talented Matt Artinger!
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We've posted our June newsletter, where we share a Father's Day reminder, talk about recent spring and upcoming summer classes, thoughts on woodworking jigs and words of wisdom from Theodore Roosevelt.

Woodworking Jigs

The use of jigs is a fairly common topic of discussion around here, with some people justifying the use of anything that will improve the outcome of their work, and others who feel that using a jig to guide a tool is somehow “cheating”. Interestingly, I don’t notice people being quite so polarized about using a jig with power tools – you (hopefully!!) wouldn’t think twice about using a fence to guide a board while ripping on the table saw.

 Yet when it comes to using jigs to guide hand tools where the users skill directly and immediately impacts the outcome but not necessarily their safety, woodworkers tend to become divided. Whether honing a blade, chopping dovetails or paring a shoulder, using a jig replaces some of the “workmanship of risk” with “workmanship of certainty”. (Read craftsman, industrial designer and Professor of Furniture Design at the Royal College of Art, David Pye’s classic 1968 book “The Nature and Art of Workmanship”)

Running a furniture making school, I’m often asked where we stand on this, so here is how I see it. If you are putting the bread on your table with your furniture making, the time it takes to master hand honing your chisels and plane irons or chopping cleanly to a dovetail baseline is a good investment. Once you have mastered the skill it is yours for as long as you care to practice your craft, and it will save you valuable, productive time, the one thing that you cannot create more of.

If you are making furniture for the pleasure of doing so, the answer is less clear-cut. The gratification of mastering new skills is a big part of what drives many people to take up woodworking in the first place. But if the time you have available to spend in your workshop is limited by other commitments, you may choose to spend that time doing something other than perfecting your sharpening skills. And that’s just fine. If using a honing guide allows you to more quickly move on to the next step of building your furniture with successful results, you should feel free to use it and enjoy creating what you set out to build.

The same principal can be applied to all sorts of jigs used to guide hand tools. I hope you’ll keep in mind though that part of what makes a piece of work “hand crafted”, and part of the pleasure in creating it, may very well be the part done “by hand”. 

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Keep this in mind when your goal is to create something extraordinary...
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