Wood Turned Art and Accessories

My fascination with woodturning goes back to my childhood when my father would let me hold a turning tool to a piece of scrap wood mounted on his old Sears lathe. I held that fascination with me well through adulthood. Finally, in 2001, I announced to my husband that I wanted a lathe for my birthday. I immediately joined the local turning club, and like most new turners, I wanted to learn it all and do it all. So I turned bowls, platters, lidded boxes, ornaments with finials, hollow forms, good wood, punky wood, I turned it all. Then I began to decorate it. I carved, sand blasted, burned, pierced, painted and dyed.

But through it all, I loved the idea of combining art with the functional. But, I didn’t just want to leave those beautiful wood pieces on a shelf. That is when I began to experiment with “wearable” art. I first began by making purses in several styles and through several iterations. I then added jewelry. I had seen lots of wooden disks hanging on leather straps, but I wanted to do something different. So I began to experiment. I turned hundreds of disks in varying sizes, beads in varying diameters, then began to hollow, burn, carve, pierce and paint them.

Through it all, I was enamored with the wood, whether it was beautifully quilted or spalted or filled with voids and bark inclusions. Someone else’s scraps became my treasures—my art, and today, I’m wearing it.