Scotland’s National Woodworking Show

Artists can use woodworking to create delicate...

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Last weekend we went to a woodworking exhibition at the Royal Highland Centre. It was hosted by publishers Nelton Group and showcased Scotland’s National Woodworkers Show.

It is an annual show and it was the first time I had been to an event where some fine craftsmen exhibited their work and gave practical tips, where there was some marvellous machinery, exotic types of wood and yummy tools for woodworking. And I love the smell of wood so I was glad to be there.

I realised I was a bit of a tool freak decades ago when I built a house out of timber and first used a handsaw and hammer. I had used axes and adzes before in the forest up the road from my property. As the house grew I found I needed to master a mitre box and chisels. This particular exercise woke me up to the amazing number of tools available for specific jobs using wood. Nailing the yellow box tongue and groove floor made me a whiz with a hammer, I can tell you! Sorting through the photos I have of that time I realise how few show the floor without rugs and carpets.

Here are two little photographs of the kitchen floor in that house.

I was snapped cooking dinner by my young son.

A very young me on the farm!

Cats always get in the way in my photographs!

I have never fitted anything more delicate than the lining of my house and putting sills on windows and architraves around doors. It was a cute, quaint house though. There was an art gallery of sorts in the township and wood workers from around the hills brought their fine and delicate work in there. I loved looking at and handling the smooth finishes of curved jewellery boxes, bowls and ornaments.

So, looking at the woodworkers displaying their talents and using lathes for turning bowls and any other number of items was an absolute treat. There was Mark Raby who makes a gorgeous job of finishing his turned items. His wife Lisa burns intricate designs onto wooden pieces.

Now, of course, we need a lathe. As if you couldn’t guess. My husband knows one hell of a lot about wood types and their qualities for woodworking. He has a CNC machine plus other necessities but no lathe as yet. That’s next.

We photographed finished items, some of which were wonderful.

Broxburn's colourful & delicate trinkets

Trinkets from the Broxburn Woodcraft Club were so delicate.

Hanbury's fiery dramatic pieces

The fiery and colourful decorations of Mick Hanbury’s plates were stunning.

The Borders' mushrooms & stool not toad!

The display from the Scottish Borders Wood Turners was charming! How’s that!! They were all very eye catching

Also took photos of the hand tools. Check out the massive ‘long and strong’ turning gouge.

Long & strong turning gouge

Nearly as tall as I am! Well, not really.

According to my husband, Robert Sorby is possibly the best maker of fine turning chisels.

Tony Wilson's travelling lathe

Tony Wilson is confined to a wheelchair and had a lathe built for him. So I took a photo of it. He had made some great candle stands.

Then there was the wall of woods. This entranced me; there were so many varieties and so many exotic timbers. It was a display by Aberdeenshire Hardwoods but, of course, everything was a saleable item. I was surprised at both the low and high costs of different wood samples. The shiny wax that protects the samples from splitting actually highlighted the amazing colours in the pieces.

All sorts of wood samples

This photo doesn’t do the display justice of course.

So next year we will visit the hall again and see what is on offer. By then I will know more about wood!

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9 comments on “Scotland’s National Woodworking Show

  1. Michelle B says:

    Very charming post, thanks.

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  5. Dod says:

    I had a lot of wood when I was younger but at my age it’s getting difficult to come by. 🙂

    • Veronique says:

      Cheeky!! Seriously though, of course you are correct. What wood there is available is much more expensive than it was when I built a wooden house.

      There is no way I would be able to afford 7½ sq. metres of either yellow box, brush box or tallow-wood these days but the house was well built, floored and clad. That was then:-) – in fact that was 1976, a good 35 years ago.

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