Sunday, March 27, 2011

tools

small fiskars
the disappearance of tools from our common education is the first step toward a wider ignorance of the world of artifacts we inhabit. 
matthew b. crawford, shop class as soulcraft
a squared end (deer leg) bone folder
i have a sort of tool lust or hunger, a need. i have relatively small hands for someone my height (5'6"). i like small tools that fit my hands, so i am always on the lookout for things that feel good, work well for me.
blunt folder, elk bone
my bonefolders are some of my favorite tools, but in the category of small tools, i would also put certain needles, drills, camera, barrettes, spoons, ruler, cutting mat, scissor, brushes, and pens and pencils. it's maybe no surprise that i loved crow quill nibs better than standard ink pens when i was drawing a great deal. they were harder, but fit me better.
a tiny folder
some of my most prized possessions are tools. i have given to a couple of friends bone folders that i made after learning how from jim croft, in a sort of exuberance of knowledge: i MADE this!!!
a blunt ended folder
teach someone, maybe yourself, how to use a tool. maybe something as simple as to sew a button back on. do it soon. before the skill disappears. before all we have is velcro.
  my little stump loom, totally funky and functional

18 comments:

kaite said...

i think you and i would get along quite well as neighbours, i also have a passion for small and not so small tools. I'm in awe of your ability to make bone folders. Is it possible to show us how as a tute?
Once, while on a long bushwalking trip in Kakadu country, i lost my spoon, so i whittled one using a found piece of timber and my knife. that's a very old and almost lost art.

deanna7trees said...

i have a few of my grandmother's bone needlework tools and a steel crochet hook that was definitely home made. i love them.

ronnie said...

beautiful bone folders.... ahhhh how I wish I had the skill/knowledge to create such beautiful tools (I have a bit of a 'thing' for lovely old tools.... especially old farming tools like little hand garden tools... )

onesmallstitch said...

oh, yes. I too, collect tools. mainly wooden "things" - shuttles, bobbins, tapestry beaters and drop spindles, I lo-ove drop spindles but also a pair of hand forged scissors, which I use all the time. My mom's tatting shuttle and thimbles--it's endless.

Velma said...

and men think it's only they that love tools! when my sweetie and i go to an antique place, we spend lots of time looking at and figuring out all kinds of tools. he's fascinated by metal forging, tools for the land, i by textile and bookish tools.

Deb G said...

One of my favorite things is my grandfather's hammer. Really dislike velcro.

Judy Martin said...

Intrigued by your little loom.

Are you curious about me? said...

You 'made' the bone folder... I am in awe of your many talents... Do you teach others how to make such wonderful tools?

Lynn said...

I love this! Tools - the making and the using of them - is something that is so quickly lost. Like our stories, our tools say so much about us, as well as work to create us in many ways.

Velma said...

aren't the tools we make for ourselves among the most treasured? my stump loom serves well, even though it's pretty rustic. about bone tools-i learned to make them, but haven't taught the skill. dan essig will be teaching tool making in north carolina soon, and sometimes shanna leino teaches working with bone. jim croft teaches several classes a year taught us all (and many others). jim and shanna's tools sell through talas. i sometimes sell to friends, too.

neki desu said...

bone folder coveting!!
there's a saying re tools in my household
you can boil water in a frying pan, but the existence of pots should tell you something.

T said...

nice bone folder velma, very nice....

xt

jude said...

yes.

Max the Lobster said...

your elk folder is such a beautiful shape, reminds me of early hand axe shapes, so simple

Velma said...

working with bone is so satisfying...

Virginia said...

Love your tools. And I need a stump loom. I can see it being good therapy - for both Maxx and me.

kaite said...

can you give us a hint as to what tool to use to shape bone? is it a fine toothed saw or simply yards of sandpaper?

Diana Angus said...

I would like to ask permission to build a stump loom, since I would have never thought of this without reading your blog, which I found through Judy Martin's blog. I will not be hand spinning the lokta paper like you do, but have some ideas in mind that really tempt me.

Thank you so much for sharing what you do, as well as aspects of your living and thinking. This is so inspiring to people like me who are just beginning the journey of making.