This is a model of an English Arts & Crafts design. Read more
Tag Archives: Don Weber
Chairmaker Don Weber offers a sample of how simple projects can spring from the forest and the sweat of your brow. By Don Weber Pages: 68-73 From the April 2004 issue #140 Buy this issue now Afew years ago, I needed a bedside table for my cuppa and a book on those rare “lie-in” mornings. … Read more
A chairmaker explains his fascination with the ancient art of blacksmithing and being able to make his own woodworking tools. By Don Weber Pages: 72-75 From the October 2005 issue #150 Buy this issue now It was April of 1986, and I’d just arrived at a craft show up a long dirt road, an hour’s … Read more
Bodger and blacksmith Don Weber shows how to effectively combine power and hand-tool techniques to build a simple and sturdy toolbox. By Don Weber Pages: 44-48 From the April 2005 issue #147 Buy this issue now I’m a bodger and a blacksmith, making tables and chairs in iron and wood. When I’m not in the … Read more
U.S. woodworkers design a foot-powered lathe for Honduran artisans so they can produce mortars and pestles for sale. By Don Weber Pages: 64-67 From the August 2007 issue #163 Buy this issue now Take one 13-tooth bicycle sprocket, a bicycle chain and a heavy spring. Add to that some plumber’s floor flanges, a few assorted … Read more
Louisville Golf keeps links tradition alive – and with a satisfying thwack. By Don Weber Page: 96 From the April 2007 issue #161 Buy this issue now I’ve been a woodworker for more than 40 years and a golfer for the past 14. When I was growing up in Wales, there was a golf links … Read more
Inspired by the agricultural tools of rural England, this massive oak table is awash in hand-worked details.
By Don Weber
From the February 2009 issue #174
Buy this issue now
As a young fellow growing up in the countryside of Wales, I clambered over many a farm wagon, climbed into many a loft in barns that were jointed and pegged, and tripped over many a hay rake on my adventures.
I have always appreciated the simple, utilitarian, yet pleasing design of the vernacular woodworking of the countryside. My inspiration for furniture forms has always been the work of the wheelwright and coach maker. And the inspiration for how to build things came in part from Sidney Barnsley and Ernest Gimson.
Barnsley and Gimson were men of the Cotswolds school of craft architects. They were part of a group of London architects who moved to the countryside in the 19th century and set up what is known today as the English Arts & Crafts movement (along with William Morris at Kelmscott Manor).
These free thinkers broke away from convention and began to design not only the buildings, but the furnishings as well. And they turned to the rural countryside for their inspiration.
The hay rake table built for Rodmarton Manor was an example of how Gimson and Barnsley adopted details from farm wagons, carts and farming implements that were still in use in the Cotswolds.