quilting in the woodshop
What was the inspiration for this piece?
I was at dinner with some friends and they asked what I was working on at the BARN. I said that I was just about out of projects so if anyone would like something I would be happy to make it. One person said they needed a coffee table and that was all the inspiration I needed.
Tell us about the creation process including any obstacles to overcome or surprises.
The biggest surprise was the extraordinary wood. The wood was extremely rough when I bought it but when I started working it and saw what was underneath the roughness, I felt as though I had hit the jackpot. The “cloud-like” appearance is called quilting, in this case quilted maple. The depth, breadth, and expanse of quilting on this is magnificent and very uncommon. Two pieces of wood form the top.
Highly figured wood like this is very difficult to work with since the grain is randomly oriented and highly susceptible to tearing. This piece was made almost entirely using only hand tools and no sandpaper was used. The glasslike finish texture was obtained using a very sharp and steeply angled plane blade.
Tom started woodworking when the BARN opened. He took an introductory woodworking course and immediately gravitated to hand tools, enjoying the meditative aspect and the intimacy one gains with the wood.