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Amateur Wood Carving

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With 50 years around the sun, Kimberly enjoys sharing a variety of her personal life experiences with others.

There's no time like the present to begin a new hobby.

It was a beautiful September day when my hubby and I spent the day outdoors relaxing and soaking in some nature trails.

It was on this fall day that something new birthed inside of me. I told my husband I wanted to carve a spoon from raw wood. That afternoon we started a "His & Hers" Project. We gathered some wood from our nature hike. Upon returning home, we began carving away on our pieces of wood. It didn't take long before we had each completed a solitary hand-carved spoon.

My husband and I found great satisfaction with the creation of our spoons. I, however, found a new obsession with carving and therefore forged ahead in the weeks that followed in making a variety of utensils.

"Disclosure: Some of the links below are affiliate links. This means that, at zero cost to you, I will earn an affiliate commission if you click through the link and finalize a purchase."

Hobby Tools


Sore Thumbs

My thumbs were considerably bruised, and blisters were beginning to surface upon the palms of my hands. At that moment, I decided I would need to implement some new carving techniques or tools to continue my brand-new hobby.


"Life's A Hobby"

— Joshua Lederberg

His and Her Project


A New Hobby was Born

In the weeks to follow, we gathered a compilation of fresh and dry, salvaged aspen and alder wood for my upcoming projects. Creating a stockpile of materials to pick and choose from was brilliant.

I could then cut a desired section of wood to length with a Sawzall at any given time. The next step in creating was to eliminate the outer bark from the wood's inner flesh. In this process, I used a flat-edged knife at the time. I could then use a Dremel tool for shaping and adding depth to each piece as needed. I used a hand sander to smooth all my edges and to help sheer off some excess wood in areas that just needed a bit of refining.

I added finishing touches to each carved creation. I often used a drill to place a hole at the end of a utensil to display it on a hook. Each completed piece also received an application of mineral oil to help lock in a protective barrier and provide a seal to the wood.

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Since we live in a modern world and have access to a splendid variety of instruments, I implemented an assortment of tools.

  • Ax
  • Sawzall (reciprocating tool)
  • Knife
  • Dremel
  • Electric Sander
  • Cordless Drill

The above tools handcrafted everything pictured throughout this article.

*It wasn't until I was full steam ahead in my hobby that I purchased a heavy-duty apron, a master carving kit, and a wood-burning set. (See the first photo)

Working into the Night


The project pictured above was something I got a late start in the day of carving. Therefore you'll see that I was working after dark by lantern light.

I had a completely different vision for this piece of wood. In the process of using various tools, it changed my design completely. Three times over. I never dreamed a piece of wood would bring me such frustration. Just as I was beginning to think of throwing in the towel on this one, something new emerged. This particular piece was originally going to be a big scooped ladle with a broader handle. In working with it, it became a quaint little spatula.

This hobby has taught me that it's perfectly acceptable to be imperfect. Something I never thought I could embrace.

"A hobby a day keeps the doldrums away."

— Phyllis McGinley

I am a visually-oriented individual and enjoy taking before, during, and after pictures of most of my projects. There is an element of intrigue in creating that I wanted to capture in the development of each evolving piece.

I found I could begin carving a rough wood block in the afternoon and have completed it by that evening.

The quick turnaround in seeing a project through from start to finish was like fuel to my fire to keep going. I had become enthralled with this recently discovered hobby.

Unique in its Design


The wood I used for this particular piece was much drier and aged with natural beauty blemishes. Carving this piece of wood was a bit more complicated but proved to have a unique look and style of its own.

A Miniature Set

My wee wooden fork, knife & spoon!
I hand carved each of these tiny utensils. I was delighted with how perfectly imperfect they came out. I used aspen and alder wood for these miniature creations.

“My from the Heart Collection”


Hand Carved Collection

Here are a few of my finished wooden wares. I had great pleasure in carving each item and have proudly yet humbly displayed them in my studio.


I love everything about this newfound hobby, from the enjoyment of the wood gathering, the vision I have for each piece, and how each piece comes to fruition.

I find myself focused and fully immersed in a world far from stress and anxiety when my hands and heart align to create. Carving wood brings me together with nature and allows me to put forth my effort into something rewarding and straightforward.

This creative outlet is something I would highly recommend to anyone searching for a new hobby. The costs involved can be as minimal as gathering a piece of wood and having a knife to begin carving.

I hope you too will find happiness in a hobby that will relax your mind and broaden your horizons.

I hope you too will find happiness in a hobby that will relax your mind and broaden your horizons.

This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and is not meant to substitute for formal and individualized advice from a qualified professional.

© 2021 Nana

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