Archive for the ‘hardwood’ Tag

The 800th Cutting Board   1 comment

Another milestone.

This pandemic has been good for almost nothing, near as I can tell. When all of my scheduled street fairs & craft festivals canceled beginning in March and continuing through October, at this point … I kept going back to the shop.

Every day.

When you’re a maker … it’s what you do. So, I did.

My total inventory is now, for the first time, over 800 pieces. And, for the record, I’m not stopping. I will take a pause soon, however, as I have an event over the July 4th weekend. The only problem … is I have to leave California to do the event. California is still closed, but luckily, Prescott, AZ, is my destination. To see all the current schedule of events for Mrs M’s Handmade & Mr M’s Woodshop, click here.

But, this post is the story of this board, which was actually a special order through MrMsWoodshop.com: a Father’s Day Gift! The order was for a large cutting board, made from Black Walnut.

There is nothing like Black Walnut; I love working with it, every time. Unfortunately, though, Black Walnut can be a challenge to work, as it’s very difficult to get good Black Walnut lumber in Southern California.

I’ve found.

I actually set out to make 2 of these large Black Walnut cutting boards, which would require about 12 board feet of clean stock. Unfortunately, to get the 12 board feet of finished lumber, I went through 20 board feet of lumber. Here are the boards for the 2 cutting boards that I’ve “picked & processed”, ready for glue up:

Those are good looking boards. The problem is the waste. For a cutting board, I need clean boards, free of knots, voids, bark inclusions, shakes and cracks. Here’s what that the process waste looked like:

The very thin pieces are normal waste from the edges of the boards; they get recycled. The larger pieces with knots in the middle will get cut into smaller pieces to remove the knots and will eventually be used … after I store them long enough to gather enough small pieces that I can make something with. Unfortunately, that saving process can take years, and I end up chasing buckets of small cut offs around the shop until I’m ready to start that process.

But I digress.

This is the story of one of my favorite boards: a large, end grain Black Walnut Cutting Board. This beauty is 16-5/8″ x 21-1/4″ x 1-1/2″.

And the normal finishing touches, of course:

  • Non-skid rubber feet, held on with stainless steel screws for long life
  • Routed finger holds for easy pick-up
  • Finish is mineral oil, with a topcoat of Mrs M’s Board Butter
Cutting Board 20 – 508. Black Walnut. End Grain. Commissioned Piece.

More

The 700th Cutting Board (5/19/2020)

The 400th Cutting Board (1/28/19)

The 350th Cutting Board (8/16/18)

The 300th Cutting Board, 3rd Time ‘Round (4/27/18)

The 300th Cutting Board, 2nd Time ‘Round (4/4/18)

The 300th Cutting Board (2/9/18)

The 250th Cutting Board: Back In The Pig Business (10/13/17)

The 250th Cutting Board (4/8/17)

The 200th Cutting Board, 6th Time ‘Round (2/9/17)

The 200th Cutting Board, 5th Time ‘Round (11/30/16)

The 200th Cutting Board, 4th Time ‘Round (10/7/16)

The 200th Cutting Board, Third Time ‘Round (8/5/16)

The 200th Cutting Board, 8 Months Later (4/9/16)

The 200th Cutting Board (9/18/15)

Pizza Servers   Leave a comment

Some things just need to be made.

And … I get to choose what I don’t want to make, too.

I make Pizza Servers. I don’t make Pizza Peels.

That might seem to be an odd choice for someone with a pizza oven in the backyard. I stoke the fire with the wood defects and even some mistakes that happen in the garage Woodshop. Pizza is very important in our home.

But, I don’t make pizza peels, which are the boards you slide the raw pizza off of when it goes into the oven. Not my thing.

My thing is to help when the pizza’s done & ready to serve. Some day soon, you’ll be able to have people over for pizza.

Those times will come again.

And to be ready … you need a way to serve your pizza. It’s my pleasure to help.

My pizza servers are 16″ in diameter: large enough to take an extra large pizza (and yes, I’ve researched this point. Extensively.). There’s a sturdy 6″ handle that’s pre-drilled for hanging, if you’re so inclined.

Final thought: some use these round serving pieces for things other than pizza. That’s OK. I like things other than pizza, too.

My new website is now up. If you would like to buy a Pizza Server, or browse the latest things that have come out of the shop, then go to MrMsWoodshop.com. Free shipping for orders over $75. As you look at the below pictures, note the file name of your favorites. The format will be “Pizza Server 20 – 9xx”. Put the number of your favorite in the notes of your order, and I’ll make sure you’ll get your choice, assuming that you’re the first to ask for it!

Here’s a direct link to the page with Pizza Servers!

Posted June 9, 2020 by henrymowry in Woodworking

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The Last Day!   Leave a comment

Today is the LAST DAY of the launch discount on Mr M’s Woodshop.

Please understand; I don’t discount my work at events or when people come by the shop to buy a board. So, my offering a blanket discount on the website is really unprecedented … and won’t come around again. Truly.

Buy today, and you get 20% off of everything with the promo code “MrMsLaunch”. Plus, there is free shipping on all purchases over $50.

Beginning June 1, the promo code goes away. I will continue to offer free shipping, but the minimum will increase tomorrow to $75.

So, to summarize, on MrMsWoodshop.com:

  1. TODAY ONLY, save 20% with the promo code “MrMsLaunch”
  2. Free shipping for all purchases over $50

Thanks to all for the incredible support I’ve received with the launch of my website. I couldn’t do it without you! And since the proof of the pudding is in the eating … here’s some eye candy for you. All of these action shots were provided by proud owners of boards from the Woodshop.

Posted May 31, 2020 by henrymowry in Media, Woodworking

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The Magic In The Bottle Openers   Leave a comment

Putting the magic in the bottle openers is the hard part.

As you would expect, yes?

You see, there are 2 kinds of magic: the kind that catches the caps when you open your favorite bottled beverage, and the kind that magically attaches the bottle opener to your attractive refrigerator.

No, the magic doesn’t work if your refrigerator isn’t attractive. Sorry; it’s really not about my judgement of kitchen appliance beauty. It’s the magic.

Putting the magic into the bottle opener requires multiple steps. It requires social distancing between the bottle openers. Chemicals are involved. It requires time.

All MBOs are about 5″ x 11″ and are easily wall-mountable. MBOs with extra magic can also mount on your fridge … if it’s attractive. Them’s the rules!

With this group of MBOs now finished, I have over 100 of them in inventory. That’s something I’ve never accomplished before. Now … time to move on to the next batch which will be a really pot pourri. Already picked & processed in the shop are a batch of large handled boards, cutting boards, cribbage boards, signs, custom orders, serving pieces….

If you would like to purchase a Magic Bottle Opener, a complete description is on the newly reformatted MrMsWoodshop.com. Act quickly: time is running out! Just for the next 3 days, you can get 2 promotional offers:

  1. Free shipping for any order over $50
  2. 20% off all purchases with the promo code “MrMsLaunch”.

If there is a specific MBO or two that you’re interested in, hover over or click on the photo to reveal the name of that particular piece. Wall mount MBOs are in the format of 20 – 1xx, and Fridge mount MBOS are 20 – 2xx. Put the numbers of your favorite(s) in the notes section of your order form, and I’ll make sure that I pull the one that has the magic just for you. Here’s the link to go directly to the MBO page on MrMsWoodshop.com.

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Magic Bottle Openers Are Back!

Magic Bottle Openers Are Back!   Leave a comment

It’s been 2 years since I’ve made a Magic Bottle Opener. 2 years since I stopped making what was my top selling item – at the time I stopped making them!

What happened?

I went to a show, and there were 4 vendors there selling cheap & ineffective bottle openers that were merely pretending to be MBOs. Just like that, I lost my muse. I moved on.

Now, honestly, that’s no excuse. My quality didn’t change. My sales didn’t change. But, somehow, I felt I needed to move on & make other things. I stopped making MBOs.

Wrong, I was.

For those of you new to the Woodshop, you may be wondering, WHAT IS A MAGIC BOTTLE OPENER? Here’s the MBO that hangs on our fridge:

Here’s a action video answer, courtesy of MrsMowry:

There are 2 kinds of MBOs. In the video you saw a “double magic” MBO: it is magically stuck to the refrigerator, and it magically catches the cap when you open your favorite bottled beverage. I also make a “single magic” MBO, which mounts on your wall or cabinet, and then catches your cap.

All MBOs are made from hardwood, both domestic & imported. All MBOs get a hand-rubbed urethane finish, so your magical device is protected from the fizzes and spritzes that can happen when a bottle opens.

You know me: when I commit, I don’t waver. My muse was BACK, and I was going to make MBOs. I put over 100 MBOs into production in the shop, and 56 of them have made it to the finish line.

If you feel the need for a little magic in your life, the MBOs can be purchased on the newly reformatted MrMsWoodshop.com. Plus, for the rest of May I have 2 special offers going that just might work for you:

  1. Free shipping for orders over $50
  2. 20% off of all purchases with the promo code “MrMsLaunch”.

Here’s a direct link to the page where these MBOs are for sale. Below, there are pictures of the newly minted MBOs. Hover over or click on a picture, and you can get the number of the MBO. Wall Mount versions will be numbered “20 – 1xx” and Fridge Mount versions are numbered “20 – 2xx”. Choose the one(s) that you like, and give me those number(s) in the notes with your order. That way, you’ll get to choose the magic that’s just right for you!

The Rest Of The Batch   1 comment

By the time I was to this part of my flurry of finishing, my hands were tired of vibrating.

Even with the best of hand sanders – which I have invested in – hours of sanding results in me, uh, feeling it. And as much as I don’t like that, I absolutely love getting to a glass-smooth finish on my cutting boards.

It’s one of the most satisfying things I do in the shop, truly.

The end grain boards are smoothed first with a drum sander that sands across the entire board in one pass, giving me a flat surface. Each of these boards was smoothed, top & bottom, with the drum sander. Then hand sanding began on both the edges and top & bottom surfaces of each board. 5 grits of paper are used: 80, 120, 180, 220 and 320. After the wood is smooth, then it gets oiled & waxed with Mrs M’s Board Care Kit.

There’s nothing like a hand-rubbed finish.

And, don’t forget … it is my pleasure to re-finish your board as needed. A cook will leave a knife mark or three over the years, and I’ll restore any board you get from the Woodshop to like-new condition. No charge. It takes me about 8 minutes, but you may have to wait for the right day when the shop is set up for finishing.

All of these boards are now available on the newly improved MrMsWoodshop.com. In the month of May, there are 2 special offers:

  1. Free shipping for all orders over $50
  2. 20% off everything, site-wide, when you use the promo code “MrMsLaunch”

Thank you for your kind attention. Now, with the boards finished, the photographs taken and the websites updated, it’s time to get back to the shop!

The 700th Cutting Board   Leave a comment

When the enormity of the “Shelter in Place” mandate sank in, I decided it was time to get to the shop & get to making.

And making.

Lost my head for a bit, I did.

When I begin to make a batch of things in the shop, I cut boards from several different species of wood into the right sizes, and then lay out the wood design for each piece. I call this picking and processing. That’s what I did.

And I got stuck there … so I did it a lot.

I actually had over 400 pieces in the shop in process at one time. And I know from all of the times that I’ve tripped or said a bad word when I had to move that pile of stuff AGAIN … having just 70 pieces in process at one time is a pain. 400 pieces … I’m in a small garage Woodshop. There’s only so much room.

Closed in, it was.

Difficult to move, it was.

Undeterred, I was.

So, now I’m on the other side. I’ve finished over 300 pieces; still have 100 Magic Bottle Openers to finish this week (which is a several day process, with multiple drying times required for each MBO).

Today, though, I can celebrate the rare air of accomplishment that has not been seen before.

I have over 700 pieces in inventory right now. My previous record was 400, which I first touched a little over a year ago.

The cutting board that I’ve just brought to the finish line in the flurry of finishing 300+ pieces in 3 days is a simple end grain cutting board made of Hard Maple. It’s 12″ x 16″ and is extra thick at 1-1/2″.

Juice groove? Check.

Non-skid rubber feet held on with stainless steel screws? Check.

Hand rubbed finish with mineral oil & Mrs M’s Board Butter? Check.

The unprecedented characteristic of this board are the the wedge-shaped ends which make the board easy to pick up. Traditionally, I make routed finger-holds on all of my cutting boards, but I’ve been wanting to do a board like this for some time. Will there be another?

No clue, I have.

Cutting Board 20 – 107. Hard Maple. Juice Groove, End Grain. 12″ x 16″ x 1-1/2″.

I’ve just launched the new & improved MrMsWoodshop.com, and there are 2 special offers that apply to the month of May. You can get free shipping for any order over $50. Plus! There’s a site-wide discount of 20% off when you use the promo code of “MrMsLaunch”. Don’t delay though, as the offers will expire on May 31.

Here’s a direct link to where this board is available.

More

The 400th Cutting Board (1/28/19)

The 350th Cutting Board (8/16/18)

The 300th Cutting Board, 3rd Time ‘Round (4/27/18)

The 300th Cutting Board, 2nd Time ‘Round (4/4/18)

The 300th Cutting Board (2/9/18)

The 250th Cutting Board: Back In The Pig Business (10/13/17)

The 250th Cutting Board (4/8/17)

The 200th Cutting Board, 6th Time ‘Round (2/9/17)

The 200th Cutting Board, 5th Time ‘Round (11/30/16)

The 200th Cutting Board, 4th Time ‘Round (10/7/16)

The 200th Cutting Board, Third Time ‘Round (8/5/16)

The 200th Cutting Board, 8 Months Later (4/9/16)

The 200th Cutting Board (9/18/15)

New: Dip Servers   1 comment

I love cheese & crackers, and I’m in search of the ultimate servers for them. I keep finding new ideas that are just too good not to make.

But, one does not live by cheese alone. Sometimes, you need some dip, too.

These dip servers are 13″ square and have a 6 ounce ramekin in the corner for your favorite dip. Plus, these are 2-sided servers, so you can flip the Dip Server to the back and have a square surface for … cheese & crackers, charcuterie, or your favorite appetizer.

Knowing that the best way for me to show new ideas is with pictures of the boards in action, I was able to entice Mrs M to create some delectables so we could get great action shots.

Bonus: I get to eat the props. Here you see sourdough pretzel bites with beer cheese dip.

Double bonus: live healthy. Eat fruit & dip it in fresh whipped cream.

I’m very happy with these new serving pieces; they offer a new & different presentation. My friend, Jeff Hewitt of Culinary Woods, suggested this design was one I should make. He was oh, so right. Check out his work, here.

I have relaunched MrMsWoodshop.com so you can buy my work directly, and to celebrate this new endeavor, there are 2 promotional offers available right now. But, don’t delay – the offers expire on May 31:

  1. Free shipping on all purchases over $50
  2. Save 20% on all purchases site-wide with the promo code “MrMsLaunch”.

Here’s a direct link to the page for these new Dip Servers.

Three Chords and the Truth   Leave a comment

Harlan Howard coined the phrase in the 1950s: a Country song is 3 chords and the truth. You may know his work; he co-wrote both Patsy Cline’s “I Fall To Pieces” and Charlie Rich’s “She Called Me Baby.”

This all came to mind as I was thinking about writing these words on the search for great serving pieces, which has led me to 5 sections … and a plain side.

OK, so it’s not quite music, but the wood does sing to me at times.

Thank goodness.

The 5 Section Servers are 14″ square, and 1-1/8″ thick. You can use the side with partitions, or flip the piece over and use the plain, flat side, depending on how you want to arrange your presentation.

Some people like to color inside of the lines. Some don’t. It can work either way.

To contemplate Three Chords and the Truth, see Sara Evan’s performance, which is linked, below. To contemplate the 5 Section Servers, you’ll see the 23 new pieces below. If they sing to you, you can visit the new MrMsWoodshop.com to buy one, using these 2 special offers that are only good through May:

  1. Free shipping on all orders over $50
  2. Use the promo code “MrMsLaunch” to save 20% on all orders

Here’s a direct link to the page with these 5 Section Servers.

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Hearts Are Back!   Leave a comment

If ever there was a time when we needed a little more heart, this is it.

I’m happy to do my part.

These hearts have unique wood designs. Note that all of these woods appear in their natural colors; I only apply mineral oil and Mrs M’s Board Butter as the finish. Here are the hardwoods used in these hearts:

Bloodwood, AKA Satine. Of course. These are hearts; they have Bloodwood in them. From tropical South America.

Jatoba, AKA Brazilian Cherry. Found in the West Indies, and from southern Mexico to northern South America.

Hard Maple, AKA Sugar Maple. It’s also true that this wood is known as Rock Maple, but when used in hearts, I only think of it as Sugar Maple. From the USA.

Cherry, AKA American Cherry or Black Cherry. From the USA.

Canarywood, AKA Canary. While a heart should not be thought of as a bird, hearts do sing. From Panama south to Brazil.

Purpleheart, AKA Amaranth. From Central & South America.

Bubinga … a wood with a name so fun to say, it really doesn’t need an AKA. However, it has one … and it’s fun to say, too: AKA Kevazingo. This is a fabulous musical wood, and it belongs in hearts. From equatorial Africa.

One more thought on how I make these hearts: although every heart is unique, I do make them 2 at a time. Though different, you can certainly conclude that hearts have a complementary match, if only you can take the time to find it. The last 2 pictures in this gallery are matched hearts, just for fun.

Finally, I have launched MrMsWoodshop.com this weekend. You can now buy these hearts with a click! Through the month of May, there is free shipping on all orders over $50. Plus. PLUS! You can save 20% off of every board on my site with this discount code: MrMsLaunch.

Don’t delay long, though, as the code is only good through May 31. And I promise I will never offer this 20% site-wide discount again! Here’s the direct link to the Hearts page.

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