So, back at hemslöjden! This time for a wood chip carving course. You’d think it’s something I could just teach myself at home, but I’ve wanted to get a coherent amount of teaching hands on, for some time.

We got some minor theory lecture first, and I wasn’t very attentive due to having gotten up before sunrise and scrubbed the window frames to be able to paint them later on… The most interesting thing were these hand made knives, made from old industrial saw blades that have been discarded. I can’t remember the crafter’s name though, hopefully I’ll find out and be able to order some knives.

2015-10-17 14.01.52The hardest part is, as expected, to make the cuts meet perfectly in the center. And cutting perfect circles is impossible at this stage.

2015-10-17 14.01.39There’s a trick to the triangles, which is to stick the knife down in the middle, straight down, and let the blade form a sloped cut, then pull it back out and do it again. This forms the points of the triangle. Then you just carefully slice along one cut, aiming for the next, and you get a third of the triangle cut away.

This is also used to make flowers – just cut away TWO of the three parts of a triangle, and then cut away little dents in the middle of the remaining edges.

2015-10-17 14.41.40Sandwiches, cake and tea was included in the price this time. Didn’t even take a lunch break, just gorged myself on sandwiches. Delicious, newly bought sour dough breads. And there was still lots left over after eating.

2015-10-17 11.19.17One of the participants kept asking me “You’ve done this before, though?”. I felt like the cheramics guy in Community, with not even half the skill. “No, no, I assure you, I’ve never done this…”

At the end I tried my hand at some gothic letters from the book Neue Kerbschnitt-Muster

2015-10-18 18.17.022015-10-18 18.17.09Didn’t have time to finish entirely. I have to buy some knives and finish them, and maybe stain them slightly to emphasise the pattern? Could make cute decorations.

All in all, I highly recommend this craft. But don’t cut yourself. Two people did. The easiest/softest wood to work with is linden if I remember correctly, but birch is that allround wood you can find and use for anything. Linden is almost TOO pliable.

Also, I tend to get a little worked up and overdo things. My arm was killing me when I got home. But I’m very satisfied. Time and money well spent.