Deschutes County Fair Theme Entry

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Project by Lee Barker posted 08-10-2012 03:35 PM 2352 views 0 times favorited 15 comments Add to Favorites Watch

“Let’s Stirrup Some Memories” was the theme. Nothing you see was purchased for the piece—it was all stuff from thrift stores, garage sales and the scrap yard. Objects that I had filed away “in case I needed it.” Built from off-the-shelf parts.

The base, cherry, is about 25” x 10”. A variety of woods make up the rest. The tail is cotton string which was too white so I dyed it in strong tea. Orange pekoe and pekoe cut black, for the record.

I hope the piece stirrups some memories for you. As John Prine says, “It’s all right to look backwards once in a while, but it’s not good to stare.”

But back to our story, now presented in outline form:

Deschutes County Fair, Redmond, Oregon, 2012: Open Class exhibits: Craft: Woodworking: Professinal: Other.

First Place. Plus there was a smiley face sticker on my exhibitor’s tag. Priceless.

-- " his brain, which is as dry as the remainder biscuit after a voyage, he hath strange places cramm'd with observation, the which he vents in mangled forms." --Shakespeare, "As You Like It"

15 comments so far

View SuburbanDon's profile


487 posts in 1812 days

#1 posted 08-10-2012 04:11 PM

Interesting. At first I thought it was a potato peeler.

-- --- Measure twice, mis-cut, start over, repeat ---

View ksSlim's profile


1076 posts in 1708 days

#2 posted 08-10-2012 04:14 PM

Punster 1st class award. Nicely done!

-- Sawdust and shavings are therapeutic

View Terry Ferguson's profile

Terry Ferguson

203 posts in 1486 days

#3 posted 08-10-2012 04:23 PM

Lee – You nailed the theme , juxtaposing several stirrup and related pieces creatively and with humor and whimsy. You are the one person, I know, that has a large and enviable collection of things and you put them to good use.
Well done!

-- Terry Ferguson, Bend Oregon

View mtenterprises's profile


850 posts in 1511 days

#4 posted 08-10-2012 09:48 PM

Just makes me smile.

-- See pictures on Flickr - And visit my Facebook page -

View redryder's profile


2270 posts in 1920 days

#5 posted 08-10-2012 09:49 PM

What the heck??
You could only get away with that at the fair…..............

-- mike...............

View whitewulf's profile


450 posts in 1755 days

#6 posted 08-10-2012 10:08 PM

I did not have a clue until the second photo!
Figured it had something to do with foot!

-- "ButI'mMuchBetterNow"

View ChuckV's profile


2525 posts in 2346 days

#7 posted 08-10-2012 10:13 PM

Congratulations – that is great.

I have to add that if there is ever a “Medieval Torture Devices” theme, you are all set.

-- “While the world with closed eyes sleeps, The sky knows and weeps - steel rain. ” ― Nathan Bell

View Greg..the Cajun Wood Artist's profile (online now)

Greg..the Cajun Wood Artist

5426 posts in 2127 days

#8 posted 08-10-2012 10:37 PM

It reminds me of the one my grandma had…brings back childhood memories…

-- Each step of every Wood Art project I design and build is considered my masterpiece… because I want the finished product to reflect the quality and creativeness of my work

View AKSteve's profile


451 posts in 1122 days

#9 posted 08-11-2012 02:59 AM

it’s awesome ! I hope you get a lot of kudos for your project.

-- Steve - Wasilla, Alaska

View Bluepine38's profile


3012 posts in 1904 days

#10 posted 08-11-2012 02:16 PM

Took me a couple of minutes to figure out all the stirrups, but your collection must be something else, thank
you for sharing, and I can see why the smiley face was added.

-- As ever, Gus-the 76 yr young apprentice carpenter

View CharlieM1958's profile


15889 posts in 3037 days

#11 posted 08-11-2012 02:55 PM

Nice piece, Lee! Congratulations.

-- Charlie M. "Woodworking - patience = firewood"

View Tom Godfrey's profile

Tom Godfrey

484 posts in 994 days

#12 posted 08-11-2012 03:17 PM

I have no idea what it is or does. Someone needs to tell me.

-- Tom Godfrey Landrum South Carolina (

View rejo55's profile


175 posts in 1061 days

#13 posted 08-11-2012 03:24 PM

Question: Lee, what in the world were you doing with an OB-GYN stirrup, or is that a question that I shouldn’t ask?
I looked at it and it looked neat. Then Miss Honey Ma’am looked and pointed out what the stirrup was and I just had to ask. LOL
No, seriously, that is a fantastic creation. No wonder it got first place and a smiley face. I love it!

Have a good’un

-- rejo55, East Texas

View Lee Barker's profile

Lee Barker

2169 posts in 1669 days

#14 posted 08-11-2012 03:43 PM

Hey Joe—Well, it goes like this. I frequent the local scrapyard (Swift & McCormick, Terrebonne, Oregon usa). It’s where I get away, get stuff, get inspired, get dusty and greasy, and smile constantly. Last year, for her birthday, I took my wife Linda there. On my previous trip I had found that exam-table stirrup and then misplaced it. I told her of my broken heart, and darned if she didn’t find that stirrup. It kicked (sorry) around my shop until I read the Fair theme this year. Bingo! I also had the English stirrup, and the shoe last, and the motorcycle peg, and was dismantling a bike at the time just to get a few parts from it, so the piece nearly built itself.

Here is a satellite view of the yard. It is impossible to grasp the immensity of it from above. Each of the piles is about 30’ high.

You weigh in, park, walk around, make your periodic piles of stuff and then drive back around and pick it up. $.30 per pound on the way out.

Hey! They’re open till noon on Saturday! What’re we waiting for!



-- " his brain, which is as dry as the remainder biscuit after a voyage, he hath strange places cramm'd with observation, the which he vents in mangled forms." --Shakespeare, "As You Like It"

View spunwood's profile


1194 posts in 1654 days

#15 posted 08-11-2012 04:34 PM

I like it Lee, but really, what is it?

-- I came, I was conquered, I was born again. ἵνα ὦσιν ἓν

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