Waiting List Information

All my woodwork is custom made, after you place your order. Wait times vary depending on my workload and the intricacy of the item you order - anywhere from two weeks to several months. Please contact me before placing your order if you have any questions. Thanks!

Featured Project

I like to feature a recent project below. If you want to see more, check out my Bowls and Boxes, Pens, Gifts, Toys, and Home Decor pages.

Monday, December 1, 2008

Segmented Bowls - From Design to Dinner

This project was a long time in the making - I bought the wood back in July. It wouldn't have taken so long if it hadn't been just a personal ambition - this wasn't made to order. So if you're thinking "Geez, I'd really like a hand-turned segmented wood salad bowl and serving bowl set but can't wait four months" (because I KNOW you are thinking JUST THAT) don't worry, it won't take so long if I'm getting paid for it.

So the first step was picking out the wood. I chose bloodwood, maple, walnut, and purpleheart, because I liked the color combination. Other woods would be gorgeous too though - yellowheart, cherry, the possibilities are endless. Then step 2: Design. Using AutoCAD I drew up the profile I wanted, and figured out how to cut the pieces, and then laid them out on the board I would use to maximize the use of the wood. Turned out I could get four big bowls and 8 small bowls from the wood I had bought. From there, rendering it was just a few more steps. That's what I posted in August.
The next steps were to cut the wood, turn the bases, glue the rings together, sand one side of each ring, glue one ring on (see picture below), flatten the top to receive the next ring and turn it to a circle, then glue the next ring on and so on till all layers were glued on.

The next step, and the really nerve-racking one, was to turn each bowl to its finished shape. So many things could have gone wrong - I had to go thin - didn't plan on adequate tolerances during my design - and the bowls at any point could have broken out of the chuck, burst apart into their consituent 61 pieces, or any other number of things. Turns out that little scrapes and nicks on my hands were as bad as it would get! Once the bowls were all turned to their finished shape, I had to sand, oil, and wax the bowls, and this is the finished result:
The project was AWESOME. I have to admit I'm proud of this one. I'm going to try and enter it in the county fair next summer, I think. Or state fair or however that goes. In the mean time, I'd love to have another go, but I just need to find a buyer for the next set - like I always say, I sell to support my habbit. Happy shopping.

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Corporate Gifts - Hand-Turned Wood Pens

As the holidays approach, businesses often look for a special way to thank key clients, employers wish to thank their staff, and employees often contribute as a group for gifts for their bosses. There are a myriad of companies out there that offer cheap products, mass-produced marked up drastically in order to include a painted company logo. If it is the thought that counts, well, perhaps such gifts represent an opportunity lost. Why not give something unique that shows real thought?

My hand-turned wood pens are all made from natural solid wood, and finished with clear natural shellac for a glossy-finished, one-of-a-kind pen. Parts are the Artisan brand components, for quality and durability. You can choose from one of ten part finishes, and any number of native or exotic wood species. And each one can be shaped differently for comfort and style. The result is a unique, beautiful, personal gift that shows the recipient that what they do maters. I had one client say about his pen, "It's a bit of a conversation starter. Not to mention it looks great, and is an addition to any well organized desk. I also like to think it shows a little something about the person who carries it. Gives off a refined professional touch to any aspiring entrepreneur. Shows class and style. Accents your intentions as a businessman." I couldn't have put it better myself.

So visit my pens page today and design the pens you want. Email or call me for a price quote. Give a gift that they'll appreciate for years to come and show those whose business or service you appreciate that they matter to you. Happy Holidays!

Saturday, October 25, 2008

What's in a Pen Anyway?

Earlier this week I got a phone call one evening, while helping a kid with homework, from someone I'd never met before, who immediately apologized for interrupting me at home. "That's the cost of having a home-based business," I said. Well, his name was Omar and he was after a specific pen. He had browsed through my Pens page pretty thoroughly, and told me exactly what he wanted, from the type of wood to the shape and finish and type of metal components.

I worked with Omar to get it just right, and made his pen, which you see above. Honestly I think it turned out great. I picked the most interesting piece of Carob wood I've ever seen, and it turned and finished nicely. I thought, though, that Omar might have a story behind his order, so I asked him. This is what he had to say:

"Well as far as my story goes regarding wooden pens. About 5 years or so ago, my father gave me this Semi-assembled build your own pen kit. So I decided to make this pen. I had to sand the wood and finish the wood and just snap it all together. When this pen was finished, I was hooked!! I wrote with this pen for about 4 and a half years!! I refilled it when needed, and my pen was good to go. I appreciated the pen because my father gave me the kit and I put it together. I always carried it at work, and brought it home with me. Whenever I took my pen out to write something people would comment about it, and ask me where I got it. Its a bit of a conversation starter. Not to mention it looks great, and is an addition to any well organized desk. I also like to think it shows a little something about the person who carries it. Gives off a refined professional touch to any aspiring entrepreneur. Shows class and style. Accents your intentions as a businessman.
Now anyone, can just go buy a nice pen, which leads me to you and why I chose you to help me replace my 'little heirloom' Originally i was looking on line to find the same kit so I could make the pen myself. That's was a huge reason why its was important to me. I checked all these sites and I could not locate it, only the kits where you built it from raw materials. Then I started to lean towards buying a finished pen. I again searched several sites, and I came across yours. Nice web-layout by the way! I started to read the descriptions of the pens and was intrigued behind the story's of the different woods. So I again hit the Internet looking at and reading about different woods. I'm a spiritual person so I was drawn to the wood referred to in the bible. Thus I knew what kind of pen i wanted.
I was looking to order right away!! I found some on some other sites, but as I read your site I seen an evening PH# so I called, and the person who answered the phone said that you were busy helping your kid with his or her homework. I pretty much decided right then and there to order from you. Once you got on the phone and we were talking about the different woods and metals, I felt comfortable ordering. I could tell you are detailed craftsman that takes pride in his work, and also makes time to help the kids with homework!!! Awesome!!! Can't wait to get this pen."

Omar, the pen ships Monday morning, and thanks for your business. You know, my wife thought I was a little nuts when I started marketing pens, because it's true that a Bic that comes in a pack of 12 for $1 will do the job. But then, of what practical value is a necklace? Or why buy an expensive watch when for $5 you can get one that will tell you the time as good as any? It's nice to see someone else who appreciates a nice custom-made wood pen for all the reasons I keep saying they're great. Thanks again, Omar, and it's been a pleasure.

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

Early Bird Christmas Sale - 10% Off

Now's your chance to get that stuff on my web page you've seen but have been holding out on hoping you'd find a better deal somewhere. Not that my prices aren't great already, but from now until November 15, you can get a

10% discount off of the prices listed online!

That's right, all my wood bowls, magic wands, wood pens and pencils, shelves, frames, rubber band guns, rocking horses, consecrated oil vials, etc. are 10% off their regular listed price. So don't wait because if my work schedule gets filled up I'll have to stop taking orders till I get caught up and it may be too late to get the discounted prices.

Wednesday, September 3, 2008

Muggle Wandmaker

Imagine a witch or wizard without a magic wand? It's like a dog without a nose or a teenager without an ipod. It's just not right. You wouldn't dream of sending your young witch or wizard out into the outside world unprotected - you never know what the muggles might be up to, or worse, death eaters...Be prepared. And remember, the wand chooses the wizard.

I've been a muggle wandmaker now for about 9 months, and put the best of my muggle woodturning abilities into each one. The wood has a magic of its own, and all my wands are solid wood, without dyes or stains. Choose from solid two-piece construction or use single-piece construction. $1 per inch wand for single-piece construction, add $5 for a two-piece wand. This includes wood if it's in-stock. Special order for wood adds cost. I think you'll see the price compares favorably to the other fine wandmakers out there such as Alivans and the Guilded Quil. Each wand included a description of the wood including wandlore of the magical properies. Quality drawstring fabric bags are available for an additional $10.00

All my wands are made individually, from wood selected by the pickiest bowtruckles in Riverdale. Designed for the young witch or wizard, with metaphysical magical cores that can be identified only by the witch or wizard of the wand's chosing. Tested and inspected by my own children via wizard duel, and guaranteed to provide loads of spellcasting fun.

The wands in the photo are from cherry, oak, alder, walnut and oak, and maple and purpleheart. And don't miss my newest walnut wizard wand that I recently completed.

Oh, and just to clarify, I'm not a druid, celt, witch or wizard. I'm not even a squib - full muggle through and through. And the magic these wands contain is every bit as real as Harry Potter, Merlin, Gandalf, Middle Earth, and Hogwarts. In other words, these are on my TOYS page for a reason.

Place an Order:
Email anytime: mike@mikeswoodwork.net
Evening Phone: (801)627-8822, ask for Mike

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Segmented Bowl Design

This is a rendering generated by AutoCAD for the bowls that I'm going to be building - using purpleheart, bloodwood, walnut, and maple. The large bowl, 10"x6" will be $101, and the smaller bowls, 3"x6" will be $24.00. The question is how much will the finish bowls look like the rendered design...Check back in a couple of weeks to see. It should be a way cool salad bowl set when all is said and done.

Thursday, August 7, 2008

Farmer's Market Here I Come

Saturday morning is the Ogden Farmer's Market and I'm going to be there hocking my bowls, pens, and rubber band guns that I have in stock. I'm trying to make a few other things before it starts - some more magic wands, some semiautomatic rubber band guns, and maybe a chess set. My prices will be dropped at the market too, so if you're a local and there's anything on my pages you like, stop by and see if it's for sale. The prices on my list below are for custom orders, but if I've already got it made and in stock, well, it's a great way to save.

So come on down Saturday morning and say hi even if you don't buy. Wish me luck! Proceeds will go into buying more stuff and maybe getting into a big craft fair in November.

Here are a couple of my boys, from three years ago when we were preparing for another craft fair. That one flopped. Hopefully this one will go better...

Thursday, July 10, 2008

Wood Bowl Sale

Ok let's face it - the last few weeks have been really slow for my woodwork business, and I want an excuse to turn another bowl. I've got several pieces of hawthorne in-stock, with the bark edge, so I could make you a bowl like the one pictured above. For the next 10 days, I'll make one of these for you for $10. If you want something cooler like the myrtlewood or purpleheart bowls below, that's fine too, it's half price for labor, plus materials. See my bowls page for more info.
So don't miss out - this is a limited time offer - place your order before July 21 if you want the cheaper price. All bowls are turned with hand tools on my lathe, and finished with mineral oil and beeswax for a food-safe satin finish, and they look awesome.

Monday, June 30, 2008

Priest Crafts

Not to be confused with priestcrafts, Priest Crafts is a name I jokingly contemplated for my business when a lot of my stuff was selling for use as gifts for clergy.
My brother-in-law was recently called as an LDS Bishop - the equivalent of a priest or a pastor in a Catholic or Protestant congregation, only unpaid. I made this chess bishop for him as a gag gift for Christmas - about 6" high, with felt base, he loves it and keeps it on his desk. See my Toys page for more.
And what clergyman doesn't need a nice wood bowl on his desk for candy for the unlucky ones who are stuck sitting on the other side?
And a good wood pen is a must, of course...

So yeah, I toyed with the name Priest Crafts, but in the end settled for something that was a little less of a lightening rod. And really, the bowl and pen are a must for any desk-bound worker, don't you think?

Monday, June 16, 2008

A Bowl of Pens

I've been experimenting with different pen forms for my slimline pens, with different kinds of woods, and different finishes, and several styles of each are shown here. To see the individual pens, see my Pens page. For more bowls, see my Bowls page. I'm trying to build up inventory for a booth in a craft fair this fall - once I get finished turning the pen kits I've got on hand, I'll be making a chess set, a chess board, some shelves, stools, benches, and stuff like that, so don't get too down that all you've seen for a while are my pens.

From top to bottom, the pens are from box elder burl, lignum vitae, bloodwood, maple, purpleheart, oregon myrtlewood, and another purpleheart. The Bowl is ambrosia maple.

Incidentally, I've also lowered my prices - for the basic 24k gold twist pen with base price wood, you're looking at only $25.00. A bowl like that shown is $24.00.

Monday, June 9, 2008

Building Future Woodworkers

Don't miss my new postings - a Trophy Shelf, Custom Crown Molding Shelf, and Purpleheart Slimline Twist Pen.

My boys have all been wanting to use my tools. When the brush-off "when you're older" became ineffective, I told them that if they want to use my tools, they have to read a book about how to use it and pass a safety test and then they can. Well, my 9-yr old read the band saw book and then the lathe book in record time. His first bandsaw project was a jet out of a leftover piece of aromatic cedar:He's learning to use the lathe now, one skill at a time. Here's his spindle - alternating beads, grooves, and coves:
My 7-year old has been reading the band saw book, and in the mean time has been working on his nailing skills. While I was turning my purpleheart bowl, he made this box:After he finished, he took it inside and wrote on it: "By Matt Staten. It was hard, frustrating, and fun. Helped by: His dad."

Can't help but feel proud of my awesome boys. My 4-year old and 2-year old will one day have projects to post too, but for now they're more into smashing things with the hammers than assembling them. Good thing for the scrap box! Way to go future woodworkers!

Company Profile

Hand-made classic wood toys, gifts, pens, furniture, kitchenware, and more, all lead free, most made from renewable wood resources, and all made in small-town USA. If there's something you're looking for, let me know and I'll let you know if I can do it, how much it will cost, and how long it will take. Some of my projects have included bunk-beds, shelves, frames in standard and custom sizes, coat racks, benches, rubber band guns, hand-turned bowls, segmented salad bowls, chess pieces, magic wands - Harry Potter type, etc.