Just because I can build it complicated doesn't mean I should.

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Forum topic by PhillipRCW posted 01-15-2015 07:36 PM 948 views 0 times favorited 5 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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511 posts in 1467 days

01-15-2015 07:36 PM

Topic tags/keywords: question

I am in the middle of building several cutting boards and other small items for a craft show. Walnut, oak, maple, and cedar items. I love seeing all the projects on here for crazy cutting boards because I know the skill and forethought that went into it. I can do this also, but I’m running into a problem. I have a gorgeous piece of walnut with a very cool edge profile that I think would look good just like it is. The worker in me wants to still cut it up and add it into another cool design. Another part of me just wants to leave it as is and finish it with some oil and call it good. I know, I know. I’ve heard it a million times. That’s not woodworking.

I would like to hear from other woodworkers though. When does a complicated build become too much aesthetically for you? I tend to want to build more modern eclectic pieces, but I have the rustic style at home. Post some pictures of what you use and what you build. I’ll post mine once I’m done building it.

-- Phillip- Measure twice, cut onc.... Hey look, it's rustic.

5 replies so far

View pjones46's profile


1001 posts in 2846 days

#1 posted 01-15-2015 10:17 PM

Beauty is in the eye of the beholder, and that goes for uniqueness. Could it be artistry and knowing that it is? That is what sets one persons taste from another’s along with price point.

-- Respectfully, Paul

View Tennessee's profile


2893 posts in 2717 days

#2 posted 01-15-2015 10:31 PM

Some of the simplest and eye appealing things have sold the best for me in the galleries I am in.
As a matter of fact, when the gallery manager in the one asks for a “traditional” jewelry box, it is a lot of work and usually sits there for months, while the much simpler bandsaw boxes in crazy shapes sell like mad, as well as my simple four bottle wine bottle holders. He literally cannot keep them on the shelf. I’d say use the piece as is, in a setting that amplifies it somehow. And keep it simple.

-- Tsunami Guitars and Custom Woodworking, Cleveland, TN

View TheWoodenOyster's profile


1317 posts in 2138 days

#3 posted 01-16-2015 12:40 AM

If you are making it for shows, leave the edge. When it comes to what you are trying to sell, you have to totally forget about making what you want. You want your stuff to sell and you want to spend as little time and effort as possible while still creating a quality product. People are going gaga right now over live edge stuff, so I would leave the edge. You can pick up a stump off the side of the road and sand it for an hour and sell it for $500 if you know the right place to sell it (I don’t :)).

I really have had to split my woodworking hobby into two arenas. Things I want to make and things I want to sell. I make things to sell so that I have money to make things I want to make. I don’t try to make myself like what everyone else likes and I don’t expect other people to like what I like.

A good example is making steel and glass tables. I have been working on a commission with steel and glass side tables and such over the last few weeks. I don’t particularly like making them, but they are easy, quick, and turn a great profit. Then I can use the profit to go buy that 16” helical head jointer or some really nice wood. It’s a give and take sort of thing.

-- The Wood Is Your Oyster

View Buckethead's profile


3194 posts in 2072 days

#4 posted 01-16-2015 12:44 AM

If you have a lovely piece, let it speak for itself. Many people prefer more understated, monochrome additions to the home. My two cents, fwiw.

-- Support woodworking hand models. Buy me a sawstop.

View PhillipRCW's profile


511 posts in 1467 days

#5 posted 01-16-2015 01:04 AM

I’d kill for a decent gallery to sell in.
Luckily the stuff I like sells well. I’m a great mark. The stuff I want to build I don’t want in the house. I know, I’m weird.

The pieces are gorgeous so I think I will just go with the live edge boards.

-- Phillip- Measure twice, cut onc.... Hey look, it's rustic.

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