Woodworking in the Covid Era


Alan Kaylor Cline

The Pre-covid Period

A couple of projects from pre-covid life have provided both leftover wood and inspiration. The mahogany dower chest was made for Mom in 2006 (a bit late for her actual dowry, but beautiful nevertheless). The leaf and vine design on the top was made using a technique called German inlay. The cherry flag case holds Dad's burial flag. It, too, is decorated with German inlay.

flag case dower chest with German inlay


Mission Style Oak Furniture

With the exception of the legs on the chair, all of the wood in these pieces is quarter-sawn oak.

The first projects were small: a side table, a footstool and a lamp.

side table footstool lamp


But then they got more ambitious. There's a chair with a matching ottoman (with leather seats). To upholster the chair and ottoman, we had to buy half a cow's dyed skin. That's a lot of leather. So next came a matching side chair, designed so that it could be used as a desk chair. (It slides nicely under the desk.)

Next came a magazine rack. It's "Mission-inspired".

But, then, with a chair that slides under the desk and a magazine rack next to it, the top of the desk, strewn with papers, just wasn't right. It now sports a paper rack. Compare its shape with that of the lamp.

And then even the trash needed a new home. Check out all the angles in the new waste basket.

That left the pens and pencils homeless. And it was time for a lathe project. The inlay on the new pencil cup matches the paper rack it sits next to.

arm chair and ottoman side chair        paper rack and magazine rack


The tv room now has a major Mission Style feel.

a Mission Style room


You can see the Mission pieces more clearly in this Photoshopped image:

a Mission Style room


Not All Oak Furniture is Mission Style

Elaine absconded with the first footstool and installed it in the laundry room/pantry so that she could actually reach stuff. But it belongs in the tv room with its friends. So now there's a new footstool for the laundry room.

table top


And Then Came the Lathe

The lathe had sat almost forgotten in the woodshop since its arrival there. But it has emerged, with a vengeance, from hibernation. The first project was the pencil cup (shown above), designed as part of the oak family in the tv room. Many more objects have followed.

This small bowl and large (12" tall) vase are red oak. The wood came from the trunk of a tree that fell on our back porch in a small hurricane. The wood is very heavy. The vase would make a great weapon. We must be watching too many episodes of Perry Mason and Midsomer Murders. Notice the decoration on the vase: the thumbprint design on the bottom and the slightly art nouveau design on the top.

The tiny (just over 2" tall, including the lid) covered vessel is white oak.

small oak bowl tall oak vase small oak vessel with lid

These next three pieces are mahogony, left over from the dower chest shown above.

Notice that the large plate has a German inlay design (same technology as the leaves and vines on the dower chest). This piece blends pre-covid and covid lives: The inlay design was created using Matlab. Then it was printed and used as a template on the plate.

The lidded vessel is also mahogany, but its lid is cherry, left over from Dad's (pre-covid) flag case.

small wooden dish wooden plate with German inlay design round containter with lid


Around the Outside of 8603 Altus Cove

We had to have a lot of outside work done on the house. That was the inspiration for these small projects to add to the back deck and to the front of the house. The first picture is of a multipurpose piece: it holds firewood and can also be a serving surface. It was designed to fit against a wall that also has a vent and an electric outlet.

Next is a new top, made of cedar, for a very old piece of deck furniture.

fire wood holder table top


The old house number sign was falling apart. So now there is a new one. And a matching face for the mailbox.

house number sign mailbox front



Of course, there have to be drums. The first one is teak. The second one is maple. It was made from some leftover floor boards.

teak drum maple drum


And Speaking of Drums

You might be interested in a 4th of July performance. Alan in uniform with drum