Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Yosemite Craft Bazaar

     Last Friday Yosemite Goat Woodworking attended the Yosemite Craft Bazaar in Curry Village. This was a great experience for me since I saw first hand what many folks were interested in and what really made their eyes open. Ok ok... I made a few dollars as well. And if you happened to purchase one of my items and are visiting my blog, thank you very, very much!!!

   Now that a few extra dollars are in the bank, the plan is to look for a new drill press that is more functional than the ancient wobbled mess currently being used. Each time we go to war with the current press we walk away with many wounds (not physically but definitely mentally). The hope is we can create more items, mainly flower vases that can hold water with glass tubes. Currently there is such a wobble in the drill press that long drilling is nerve wracking. Honestly, I avoid it unless my father wants to drill deeper than normal. I believe it is an accident waiting to happen.

   Last week at the craft fair, I had lots of interest in my unique cribbage boards. These here were not at the craft fair but one similar was. I happened to sell it while another was very interested on etsy. I made her these two and she has chosen the curving board. An excellent choice in my opinion. It will me mailed as soon as I finish this posting!
    As you can see there are over a hundred holes in each. This takes a long time to complete as you'd imagine. This process is made easier with a drill press. All you need to do is set your depth, and align your markings with the drill bit............ A clean exact depth hole each time!! With the abundant request for cribbage boards it is an easy decision this is the next purchase. With the profits from the Yosemite Craft Bazaar I should be able to pay for 75% of the new lathe I have been spying in the catalog. Yosemite Goat Woodworking is coming along!!

 Nothing says beauty like Birds Eye Maple!!!!!!!!!!!!
This great cribbage board has been sold, but I still have a few more pieces similar that can be made for your enjoyment!!

Monday, November 28, 2011

Boards and Bowls

Over the last few weeks I have had ample opportunity to increase my handmade items. It has also been a great chance to increase my inventory for Christmas sales. With Christmas right around the corner I decided make a number of items that folks seem to be most interested in. Those items appear to be cribbage boards, candle holders and recently bowls. My cribbage boards are super unique and often my highest searched items via internet. Something that I am grateful for!! Next popular are my richly colorful Manzanita handler holders. A large number of my sales in the local coffee shop are those wonderful candle holders.  Lastly, my most recent progression, bowls.

Cribbage Boards are wonderful gifts for friends and family who enjoy an evening of cards, entertainment and camaraderie. I didn’t intentionally making boards for sales. I began with the intent of having a couple of wonderful cribbage boards that I could play on with friends and family, or occasional gifts. As more friends and family members kept asking for boards and lamps I decided to start making sales. Today I always keep my eyes keen on potential cribbage boards while wandering the woods. Now that I have a blog and an etsy site, my highest keyword search is cribbage boards. With this knowledge, I am trying to keep those viewers happy and make a variety of boards for viewers to see.

More recently, bowls have ‘turned’ about in the woodshop. I have been interested in making bowls for a while now, but I have not had time to put forth into the process. As some of you know, bowls need a long time to cure.  Wood has the uncanny ability to warp. So after turning a bowl initially, the bowl needs to sit for 2-6 months for curing. Next the bowl needs to be rounded again and should stay round unless the humidity is super dry or super humid. My first bowl ever was a maple burl filled with birds eye maple. A beautiful bowl that I am complicated often and have not yet decided if I would like to sell it. Although ….. a generous offer may change my mind. My next bowl was a redwood dish filled with red, curly grained designs. It is such a beautiful bowl that Christine wants to keep it or bring it to work for her desk. Not sure what will happen but it is definitely a wonderful piece of art! I have also turned three other bowls. All of which will need to sit for a number of months before they will be ready. Patience is a must with many of the wonderful items we make at YosemiteGoat Woodworking!

Sunday, November 13, 2011

Summer Season in Yosemite is Complete!

Summer Season in Yosemite is Complete!

I have had a grand season in Yosemite hiking here there and everywhere! I love Yosemite's grandeur. Both in the Valley and outside in the back country where few go. It is definitely one of the most amazing places in the world! Being born and raised in the local communities where tourist income is the main revenue and they flood the towns with fervor. Some locals complain but they do not realize the value and beauty that surrounds them. I guess I have been lucky enough to have experienced the outdoors to the fullest and realize the importance of having such an amazing part of the planet in my backyard.

As a youth and young man my friends all called me Goat. I guess it was the rock climbing  and incredible balance that started it. As facial hair became a part of my life and I grew a goatee the name Goat was a larger fixture. When internet became bigger and bigger and email was new form of communication. I decided to come up with a unique name that fit me very well. YosemiteGoat was born!! I have used the name ever since and have continued to do so with my Yosemite Art Style and YosemiteGoat's Woodworking.
Today YosemiteGoat's Woodworking is composed of myself, my father Jim, and my girlfriend Christine. We each play specific roles that make the business/hobby a wonderful venture. Well, adventure would be more appropriate. I make a large majority of the items and the styles. I also maintain the business portions such as the blog, etsy and the simple book keeping. My father Jim has half of the shop tools and makes almost all the other items. My father is an excellent guy who has eccentric, out side the box, ideas. He is a great inspiration. Jim has an excellent eye for gathering unique pieces of wood from unique places. I believe it has to do with his many years collecting firewood!! Then we have Christine, my lady =) Christine is Quality Assessment and Quality Control. Basically she decides if it needs to go back to the drawing board. If she wants to keep the item then we know it is a good one (she has had fair picking of items). Christine also writes many item descriptions on the business cards for sales at local shop. The combined help I receive from these wonderful people make YosemiteGoat's Woodworking better than I could do alone.

I love making my Candle Holders from Manzanita. I would have to say they are the best sellers because the wood is so amazing. I make a variety of styles and a variety of tea candle cups. Styles include flat surface, natural, burl, arched, and square stock. If you would like a special order, please contact me and I will make one unique and specifically for you. I hand pick special request to ensure you receive the best I have to offer.

Awesome little candle stand. You have to check out the grain!! 
My etsy sight has some other close ups as well

My first Pepper Mill. A client asked me to make one out manzanita because she enjoys the fabulous colors the wood has. This was a wonderful challenge and I have ordered 2 pairs of mechanisms to make more. Now that I have an understanding of the full components and mechanisms involved, I am ready to make a few more that come out awesome and will be ready for sales. The next few should be ready for Christmas time and presents for friends and family!!

These items are all from a small section of big leaf maple. The grain structure, coloring and spalting is some of the best I have seen in a while. These pieces will be great attractions anywhere and in any home!
 I love turning wood and having chips fly and wondering what will appear when you remove all the bark, exterior wood and get into the amazing colors that you hope will come! The joy of discovery is a min reason turning wood is so much fun.


 Buckeye Burl. Some of the rarest wood to find that has such amazing colors and designs!
This item is currently for sale on Etsy!

 Rustic Pine Candle Holder. A super cool new addition.
Oak, nothing else is ever like it. This burl vase was made by my father on the new lathe. 

I hope you have enjoyed. In the next week I am planning a pre-Thanksgiving sale at 20% off. I will provide a sales password for Etsy which you enter in during checkout. This sales is for friends and family who love my work and can get a few Christmas items out of the way and have some choice picks of what I have made.The Pass code coupon is: YOSEMITE. Sale has begun and will go until Thanksgiving.

Pine Cone Vase
 Big Leaf Maple Candle Holder
 Big Leaf Maple Cribbage Board

Nature and Love, Heart made Modern
Made from Incense Cedar (calocedrus decurrens)

 Small Big Leaf Maple vase from a fold in the tree

Amazing Winding Oak Cribbage Board 

Monday, October 17, 2011

Things Are 'Turning' Out Fine

         As of Friday, my woodworking life has 'turned' out great!! A new lathe has made all the difference. This new lathe has been spoken about, discussed and pondered about for almost two years. Now that Yosemite Goat's Woodworking has become such a great success, a chance to invest in new and improved machinery is the reality. The Lathe specifics: turning speed from 100rpms to 4000rpms; dial for changing rpms!!!; 17" radius and 42" in length; 12" bar rest; 375lbs (does not wobble!!); and one happy woodworker.  The Lathe arrived Thursday and we assembled it Saturday morning. A little testing to make sure all moving parts were functioning properly and we were ready for a real turn. OK.... I reread all the instructions, double checked all the parts, made sure the lathe was level, sharpened each and every tool even though they didn't need it, adjusted the speed dial again, etc, etc. Yeah, pretty excited and didn't want to break anything. So I started in on a piece of oak I had been saving. I have turned a number of items and thought it was pretty slick, now turning is grand. Everything works so smoothly. Nothing is half broken. Nothing wobbles. And changing speed is as simple as changing the radio dial!!!!
          Here are some of the cool photos with the new lathe and the items that have been recently made. They are offered to those who visit my blog and are interested.  I like to give my customers some first picks. Send me an email or message if you are interested and we can make arrangements through etsy. Thanks for stopping by! 

 Oak Vase - $35

 Spalted and with Birds Eye,  Maple - $40

 Oak Vase - $35

 Live Oak $25

 Manzanita, fresh cut, cracked during drying, I still think it is beautiful!! $25

 Awesome manzanita vase- not sure on the price yet, make me an offer!! best offer sells =)

 Big Leak Maple- small vase- $25

 My father's manzanita vase, I am not certain if he'd like to sell it but if you give him a nice offer I am certain he will! 6" tall, 5" wide
He was given an offer and it is now in the home of a friend!

Yosemite Artwork styles include unique colors , shapes and sizes. If there are any request please let me know. I have received a request for another pair of manzanita salt n pepper shakers. Now that I have the new Lathe the will 'turn' out this coming week!

 Fall Colors in Yosemite are amazing right now!!!