This morning I responded to
a post in the Turners Forum... I have a small
lathe ...it collects enough dust that no one ever
considers me a Turner.
The thread started by Doug
Jones was interesting and although I usually post on how
to do something... not why we do it... or how we feel
about buying stuff to support it, it is a reasonable
As I worked on my Wenge
table today the question lingered in my mind... We
are all very fortunate to have a passion! If you
want to buy a tool... do it! It is much cheaper
then seeing a shrink or roaming aimlessly through
shopping malls searching for that perfect thing you
really don't need... Make something!
We are all fortunate and
revel in our good fortune! Buy a tool this week!
But use it! For those that didn't see my response
I included it below... a bit sentimental, not like
me you might say... never the less straight from the
I really never intended to sell anything or build
furniture on commission... it just seems to happen.
The Wenge dining table I just sold, I thought would be
my personal last one... a client wanted it and as they
say, everything has a price... The love hate
relationship I had building the Teak sofa with the
mitered dovetails was for an architect friend, I
couldn't say no! I worked for about half of what I
should have because he was a good friend.
I have been asked to
participate in the local Laguna Art Festivals... I
don't want to give up my summers... I like having fun
and I don't have the time. Yesterday my wife said
to me "It will be nice when you finish Jeyong's (My
client) furniture... it will free up your weekends".
My response was they are free and I am having a great
time . I probably could design and build furniture
full time and do ok... my dilemma is I love Architecture
I have worked hard all my
life at things I Love....and as I say with every post
"All Great Work begins with Love.....then it is no
longer Work". This has been very true. I
have tried to do my best... and it has turned into more
work. If I didn't like what I am doing , I would
be miserable, because I have a lot of it. Instead
I feel I am reaping the rewards of working at things I
love. The rewards are more work, yes, and while
there are things that really seem like work on these
really large pieces like a 750 pound 12' long Wenge
table... I wouldn't trade it for anything. I wake
up each morning excited... details fill my head solving
yesterdays little problems, trying something new...
A lot of my friends my age are bored and envious... they
never acquired the skills and now in retirement they are
lost with no passion...
Almost forgot... tools!
When you use them as much as I do there is no guilt...
they brought me to where I am. I love them ... but
not polishing my planes and putting them in a glass
case... they are on my bench, or in the cabinet waiting
for their turn. The most expensive machine I own
is The MM Elite S Jointer / Planer / mortiser and after
the first project I used it on it was paid for! I
try to get things that will improve my woodworking and I
avoid gadgets. Hand tools are a joy and every time
I pick up a saw or rasp... I think of my Father... he
built my first workbench when I was 5 years old. I
guess he is to blame for the mess I am in...
"Thanks Dad ! I am loving
every minute... wish you could help me again"
Laguna Beach, CA