Who Would’ve Thought

I have built many things over the years. From simple boxes to complicated furniture pieces. From shop jigs and fixtures to hand tools. I even mastered a spring pole lathe and a hand-cranked drill press. However, the last few days have been quite a challenge. I decided to add a few spoons to my collection for the upcoming Artist Market. Nothing fancy … just a few wooden spoons.

I have to go on record saying that spoons are very hard to make. My hat is off the all the spoon carvers out there. Especially the ones that make it look easy!

In my opinion, spoon making is the quintessential art of woodworking. I’ve come to learn that there are as many ways to make a spoon as there are folks making spoons. There is no right or wrong way. Perhaps this is what makes it hard. It may be a while before this old joiner becomes an artist. I will keep at it because, well, even though spoon making is a challenge, it is quite cathartic.

With all that said, I decided to use the methods prescribed by Paul Sellers. I used dried lumber and formed my spoon with a gouge, card scraper, coping saw, and file.


I chose a 3/4″ thick piece of clear cherry, 2-1/2″ wide by 12″ long. Having made a template I laid it out on the board. Then, using a 20mm #7 gouge, I hollowed out the bowl of the spoon.


I then removed the gouge marks with a curved card scraper.


At this point, I simply cut out the spoon shape with a coping saw and refined the shape with a rasp and file. I used a chisel to remove the bulk of the waste. After several hours of refining and remarking and refining again, I ended up with two spoons and a spatula.


Now that Michael has passed through the area, I’ll go in search of some downed limbs and try this with green wood.



12 thoughts on “Who Would’ve Thought

  1. Dave Polaschek

    Spoons are tricky. I’ll come back to them at some point over the winter, I’m sure.

    Good job on yours. My first few efforts were more firewood than useful utensil.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Ron Aylor Post author

      Thanks, Dave. They are tricky. I will not be trying anything with more curve until I can use thicker green wood that I can attack with a hatchet and hook-knife.


  2. c15571

    My wife and I took a spoon carving class last year. We used green cherry and birch branches in the class. Green wood is easier to carve. When we got home the completed spoons were soaked for a couple of days in food grade flax seed oil followed by several days for curing. They look great.


    Liked by 1 person

  3. Pingback: 2018 in Review – An Unplugged Woodworker

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