If you’re one of my handful of regular readers you’ll know that I mostly blog about old-school fantasy and sci fi miniatures, interspersed with very occasional pen-and-ink drawings of creatures from folklore and mythology. It’s probably no major surprise that someone who’s into dragons, drawing, and dwarfs would also be interested in traditional crafts, though – and that’s my topic for today.
My wife and I have been to Birch, a sort of holiday camp for millennials just north of London, a couple of times. The first time we went we carved wooden spoons. Mine is pictured below, and I have to say I’m very happy with it – I didn’t expect to take to wood quite as happily as I did. The second time we made some pottery – this was much less successful for me, but after the pots had gone through the glazing and firing process, they looked pretty good! At least one of the pots pictured below is my wife’s (who was much better than me at this), but neither of us is totally sure which.
A few years ago I also made some knives and axes through Owen Bush’s bladesmith classes at Bushfire Forge, which are loads of fun and surprisingly accessible for a beginner like me. They’d been boxed up in storage until this week and I didn’t have any decent photos of them. I made the knives first. The smaller one was intended to be some sort of butter knife; the large one is a slightly rough Nepali kukri. Neither of them are strictly complete; both need proper handles and sheaths.
And about a year later I went back to do an axe-making class. Again, there’s two different styles – a standard wood-cutting axe made by folding a single sheet of metal back on itself and forging an edge; the other a more Viking-inspired piece made by hammering and shaping a bearded axe-head from a lump of metal, then driving through a hole for the handle.
You can find all my traditional craft work – which at the moment consists more-or-less only of the photos on this post, so it’s probably time to do some more – in my portfolio.