December 05, 2020

It's a 'Treet' to Work with These Craftsmen!

By Paige Sillcox
It's a 'Treet' to Work with These Craftsmen!

The Oxford Dictionary defines 'craftsmanship' as "the quality of design and work shown in something made by hand".

Here's a look at 3 of our favorite wood craftsmen:

1) Wood turning is an art; it takes a true craftsman to transform a block of wood into functional art. Such is the case with Bowls by Bernie, his pieces are individually crafted to show off colour and grain, and to maximize the impact of the bark edge. He starts with a block of wood, which by turning it on a lathe and using hand tools, he transforms into a symmetrical shape.  Simultaneously, Bernie keeps the bark edge intact. All his bowls, vases and decorative trees put the focus on the unique beauty of that one particular piece of wood. Bernie transforms local woods (plum, cherry, ash, walnut, locust, willow and more) reclaimed from storm damaged trees, arborists and log dumps in and around the city of Toronto in his garage/woodshop with his wife Bridgette close by. It was Bridgette who suggested we might be interested in Bernie's sculpted trees, which have become an integral part of our in-store display as have many one-of-a-kind bowls. All his pieces have an oil based food safe finish and they can be hand-washed with mild soap. 

2) The craftsmen behind Muskoka Woodworking make charcuterie and cutting boards, the gold standard of which is the Butcher Block Series. Made of cherry or walnut, the surface of an end-grain cutting board resembles the end of a 2 x 4.  That’s where it gets the name “end grain.” These boards are composed of many short pieces of hardwood, which are arranged vertically and grafted together, side-by-side. Together, the ends of all of the pieces make up the cutting surface. This cutting board construction creates a distinctive looking checkerboard pattern. End-grain cutting boards have the benefit of being attractive and easy on your knives.  An end-grain board also has a very fibrous cutting surface, so a knife’s edge is likely to sink into the wood fibers while you are cutting and doesn’t show scratches as easily. All the Butcher Block Boards are at least 1-1/2" deep and with the proper care will last decades!


3) Another talented craftsman is Terry of Chuck & Wood. At his North Bay workshop, Terry crafts boards, lifestyle products and custom pieces, including our amazing 8' store-front sign. We carry walnut cutting boards with a juice groove, walnut and cherry serving trays and walnut wine coasters engraved with our logo, as well as, cherry and walnut loop handle charcuterie boards. All Terry's pieces are handmade and finished with his hemp oil and beeswax food safe finish. But that's not the full extent of his talent, when customers asked if our swing, a fully functional in-store feature, is for sale, we knew who to ask....


Bernie, Terry and the team at Muskoka Woodworking are craftsmen who turn their vision into functional art and we hope you enjoy their work as much as we do! 


🌲 Pine Boutique

1 comment

  • Catherine C. Vestal on September 08, 2022

    What wood should not be used for cutting boards?
    Answer: Open pored wood not to use for cutting boards like ash or red oak because these woods are difficult to clean from food stains.

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