2015 Wood Diamond Award
Main Category: Furniture
Sub Category: Other
Dollar Amount: Under $25,000
What materials/species were used in this project/item?
Ponderosa and Sugar Pine, Willow Twigs, and Cedar Planking.
Describe, in detail, the project/item’s construction.
This furniture piece was handcrafted by two brothers who work at our shop. No power tools were used after the raw wood was milled, and all parts were hand chiseled, planed, sanded or sawn. With the exception of the cedar planking used for interior shelves, all of the wood used was raw lumber or whole trees harvested in New Mexico by Manuel and Andrew. The wood is not stained, but finished with a wax in the tradition of early Spanish Missionaries. The hinges were handcrafted by a blacksmith in Santa Fe, New Mexico. Manuel and Andrew’s work represents the level of custom detail we offer, and their hand carving skills are often used on projects where unique corbels or turnings are required.
What is the most unusual aspect or outstanding characteristic of this entry?
Since the level of craftsmanship, detail and artistic talent exhibited by these two is something that is becoming more uncommon in modern woodworking, we have built a legend about these two craftsmen that we are fortunate enough to employ, while much of this is fiction, like all good stories it contains some truths.
We call it The Tale of Two Brothers.
A long time ago (about a quarter century), two brothers were born in a far off land called New Mexico. It was not long before they were able to walk, and wandered away from their home into the woods. The nights were cold, food was scarce, and the woods were filled with wild creatures. One night as they meandered through the forest, they were set upon by a vicious pack of chipmunks! Luckily for them a wolf, who had been stalking them, decided to take pity upon the boys and rescued them from the ferocious rodents.
They lived with the wolf and her pack for many years, until the wolves grew tired of the boys always trying to carve the local forest into furniture. The wolves forced the boys to chisel out a makeshift canoe and they were banished from the wolf pack and sent on their way down a river.
The river twisted and turned, churned and bubbled, and all along the way the boys looked at the trees along the banks and marveled at the beauty in the woods around them. Finally their canoe lit upon the shore and the boys climbed from it into the most amazing place they had ever seen. It was filled with downed timber, and in a small building nearby they found wonders beyond imagination, for the shed contained hammers and chisel, saws and drills, sitting there waiting for the boys to come along and turn all of the downed timber into furniture.
The years passed, the furniture became even more amazing. One of the boys grew a beard, rivaled only by the beard of the legendary Grizzly Adams. The other boy became lean and fit, doing many exercises at once. Together they continued to craft furniture. Furniture that no other human had set eyes upon until a member of our shop family was hiking in the woods and stumbled upon them and brought the boys, who were now men, to the shop, where their work could be displayed and loved by many. A lucky few will have the opportunity to take a piece of this work home, and enjoy it for generations to come, ensuring that the tale of the wolf boy furniture makers lives on forever.
List any items that were outsourced.
Everything in this piece was constructed by hand, in-house.
How being a member of the CMA has benefited you and/or your business.
As members of the CMA, we hope to leverage the knowledge base of other members, as well as share our extensive experience in cabinetry and fine woodworking with others in our industry. The CMA forum is a great resource to share experiences, technical knowhow and make contact with other craftsmen in our vast, but tight knit woodworking community.