Sunday, March 28, 2010

Looking Ahead to Monday

It's Sunday night, and I am gearing up for another week. I am currently working on a cherry coffee table. I can't wait until it's finished!! I really think this one is going to be great! The top is just one solid slab of cherry with natural edges that run the entire length of the table. I cracked the bark off and then just used a wire brush to clean it up. I love the texture, and the rustic feel of it.

Right now, I am working on the base, and more specifically, the joinery. The base is mahogany, which is lovely to work with, and should be a bit darker than the cherry top. I think this bit of contrast will give the table a little adding sea salt to caramel. I am connecting the skirt to the legs with through mortise and tenons. Basically, you will be able to see how everything is attached from the outside of the leg...does that make sense? As I figure this blogging thing out, I will be able to add more photos and plunk them in right where I need them to help me explain things better.

Anyway, I am cutting the tenons by hand for this particular project. I saw Dick Ivens do it once in a demo for some of his students, and I was so impressed that I almost fell off my stool. I am a bit competitive, so I was determined to brush up my hand tool skills! Mahogany lends itself very well to working with hand tools, and the whole process has been slow, but very enjoyable.

So tomorrow, I will be cutting two more tenons. That is probably all I will accomplish tomorrow on the table. There is always a million mommy things to do outside of the workshop...pretty sure other moms out there can relate!

Friday, March 26, 2010


Square One Design has been evolving for almost 10 years. It began as an outlet for all of my creative endeavors. Before my children were born, I was a fiber artist working in a small studio in downtown Cedarburg. I made mostly hand stitched quilts for the first couple of years. In 2002, I opened an art gallery with a group of friends called Artpost located downtown Grafton, Wisconsin. My quilts evolved into framed collages which actually sold quite well, but I knew my passion was furniture design and woodworking, so as work would sell, I started building our workshop, purchasing one tool at a time. Artpost closed in 2007, and for the last few years, I have been raising my kids at home and figuring out who I really am as an artist again.

I graduated in 1998 from Milwaukee Institute of Art & Design with a bfa in Industrial Design. My greatest influence is the work of Steve Lacey who was my mentor and most loved instructor of all time. He was the reason I started building furniture in the first place and his all to early passing motivated me to dust off my skills and get back in the workshop.

Since my kids are now both in school full time, I have no excuse anymore. I am in my workshop most days, making tables and cutting boards and whatever else needs doing. I can honestly say I have never been happier!