I have recently attended (june/july) a Steam Bending course in NZ (taugh by David Haig – rocking chair fame). It was a real eye opener as to what can be achieved with various methods of bending wood (steam, lamination and kerf bending). In the allotted 10 days I decided to make two stools (to keep the peace with my 2 kids). It was a stretch but I got there. I made one in Ash and one in Oak. Steam bending only works with certain woods and only with stock which has been airdried (making it hard to find reliable source in NZ and NZ woods aren’t very good in general either).