When I was in high school, I took a shop class where I learned to use the lathe. It gave me great joy to create, to use my hands to give birth to beautiful items, but as I grew up, that took a backseat to more pressing things. I enjoyed the lathe, but as happens for so many, once I got to college, married, and started a family, that short-lived hobby fell aside in the pursuit of providing for my family.
What was truly wonderful, and perhaps a sign of things to come was the fact that me and my wife both loved crafting. Mary, my wife, and I have enjoyed doing some form of woodworking for most of our married life. The first really big job was an addition to our first home of approximately 800sf wherein we did substantially all of the work ourselves. This united us and made us consider pursuing our dream. If we had the fortitude to build on our own home, what else could we achieve? Making turned wood pens or cute office desk accessories and other wood items seemed like a small feat compared to the gargantuan undertaking of the expansion we did.
Some years later we contracted for the construction of a new home and fortunately had a little more room for multiple shop tools rather than just hand tools. We expanded our working area, giving us more liberty and freedom to experiment with our craft, even though just as hobbyists. We took more and more time out of our day to better ourselves, and realized this is what we truly loved doing- creating custom made wood pens and other items. The process and the end result fascinated us and made us happy. The ability to have our own working space gave us the ability to truly start with our craft.
After a few small projects we decided to attend formal woodworking workshops and training. This gave us the technical knowledge we needed and the qualifications required to pursue our hobby and turn it into something more. It was here, after attending a few of these classes, that my passion for the lathe was reignited . I remembered the beautiful items I used to craft, and so I returned home and soon began turning pens and pencils first, slowly building my collection of woods and pen types.
I am always on the lookout for a new wood or material to turn, or for a new project to try. Recently, I have begun turning salt and pepper mills, ornaments, bowls and boxes. I am always trying to learn something new, observing items and how they are made, their shape and what makes them special, wanting to recreate them in my woodshop and give them my personal touch. Some of my most enjoyable hours are spent shopping in my garage, the term coined by my family for my time at the lathe.
Mary has always been very artistically talented and very gifted in woodworking, having grown up helping her parents in home construction. Her talents complete our need for creating I put in a little labor, and she puts in the extra aesthetic sense needed to get our craft to the next step. She is gifted with graphic design and enjoys creating custom designs based around an idea, an inspiration, or our customers needs. As I began working with our lathe in the shop, we also purchased a laser engraver, and my wife skillfully began crafting Christmas ornaments, wall plaques, wooden boxes, and more. We make a good team and Im proud of that, and proud of the custom wood items we produce together.
We experiment with various materials, not only wood. In time, we expanded our skills to ivory, various types of stones, deer antler, snake skin and others. This has allowed us to be more flexible and creative, and enlarge the product offering we have.
We are a small, home-based company. We know there are other places you can buy wooden pens or products, but we pride ourselves in the fact that our products are not mass-produced. Instead, each is hand-turned or created. You can rest assured that each item you buy will be one of a kind, and that makes them more valuable, emotionally and economically. Our primary goal at Grapevinewoods.com is to provide you with custom-made, quality products that you will be proud to own or to gift. Be it turned wood pens, wood office accessories, engraved boxes or other items, you can be sure that we do it with love and care to give the best product possible.
We have many ready-made products available here on our website, but if you dont see exactly what you have in mind, please email us with details and we will do our best to accommodate your needs. We can use other materials other than those on that particular item page, so contact us and we will see what we can do to accommodate your tastes.