I have just launched the Homegrown Spoon Project, a journey into carving locally grown trees into a collection of spoons which will showcase the abundant variety of trees growing near my workshop in South Devon in the UK
I'm excited to take my readers and followers on this journey as I explore the vibrant aspects of spoon carving that extend beyond the carving process. One of the most exciting elements lies in the treasure hunt for timber – a quest that not only unearths the hidden beauty of local trees but continues to forge human connections within my local community.
I hope to celebrate the people, their stories of their ties to the trees that grow here and of course delve into carving the wide variety of tree species which grow locally. In doing so I hope to foster a deepening relationship with the hedgerows, woodlands and landscapes around my workshop
In some ways this is nothing new, I never buy wood from the internet or source wood from far afield, but the intention behind the project is to explore the diversity of tree species around me, and rather than personalise, decorate or sell the spoons I will keep them as part of the homegrown spoon collection
I have initially wanted to call the spoon the native tree project, having read the Woodland Trust's 40 plus list of UK Native Trees, I realised some key figures such as Sycamore were absent, and although Sycamores are a relative newcomer to these Isles and bring with them controversy as 'invasive species' they are to me very much a part of the landscape of hedgerows and woodlands
Plus Sycamore are being felled regularly and make excellent carving with their beautiful medullary rays and effervescent grain - so why not include them! There are a vast number of non native trees which thrive and grow here and will be wonderful to include.
So I have decided the project will involve any species growing within close proximity to my workshop, I'll be documenting the attributes and beauties of each wood and slowly building a collection of homegrown spoons.
"Into the woods I go to lose my mind and find my soul!"
- John Muir
To follow the journey stay tuned here, follow my videos on various social media channels @alexfinberg
If you are local to South Devon and have a tree down which you'd like made into a spoon, please do get in touch!