Saturday, September 21, 2013

Appalachian Sweet Wood Mountain Studio

Many moons ago I started a blog. It is a dysfunctional procrastinating mess due to many different distractions including social media, namely FACEBOOK and PINTEREST. I cannot promise anything (even to myself) that I will be less dysfunctional in the future but I am driven to write this post.

I recently had the pleasure of visiting my Aunt Dayne Edwards in Dickenson County VA. The reason for my return to the place I was born was a sad one - the loss of my beloved Uncle Bruce. My sister wrote a beautiful article about this that you can read HERE.

Having been enchanted by the wonderful works of wood art that she creates many years ago, it was the first time I visited her studio up close and personal. 

Apple Tree on the path to Sweet Wood Mountain Studio

How peaceful and wonderful to have a place such as this to work without computers, noise or distractions.

Here with my niece Sandra Colley Paquin about to show us the 1900's sewing machine she completely restored. 

Saws, drill presses, bits, lathes, and the wonderful smell of fresh sawdust and tung oil. All operated by this tiny dynamo of a woman. Under the sheet there is a restored organ that required hand carved missing pieces that I wish I had taken more photos of. 

Although this machine was found at auction it is the same treadle type my grandmother used. As Dayne said, "there is something so relaxing about using these machines". Not only did she restore the wood work on the cabinet, she replaced all the belts and missing parts (thanks to E-Bay)to get it in perfect working condition. 

A close-up of the art you see on the back wall above. The art she does is called:


Intarsia is a woodworking technique that uses varied shapes, sizes, and species of wood fitted together to create a mosaic-like picture with an illusion of depth. Intarsia is created through the selection of different types of wood, using their natural grain pattern and color (but can involve the use of stains and dyes) to create variations in the pattern. After selecting the specific woods to be used within the pattern, each piece is then individually cut, shaped, and finished. Sometimes areas of the pattern are raised to create more depth. Once the individual pieces are complete, they are fitted together like a jig-saw puzzle and glued to wood backing which is sometimes cut to the outline shape of the image. (From Wikipedia)

There are portraits of her grand children, my grandmother cooking beets outdoors, her parents feeding chickens or milking cows. I am amazed at the detail and how tiny some of the pieces are that she must cut to fit. Some of her scroll saw blades are as tiny as a needle. To me they are absolutely charming and wonderful.

While most of her works are not for sale she has pieces at the 

Hope you enjoyed the visit as much as I did. Thanks for the inspiration Aunt Dayne!



SteveBrogan said...

Enjoyed the post and the pictures. Thanks for sharing.

Diane Brogan said...

Corky, now that you have shown me how great you are at writing a blog, I am looking forward to the next one.

julzabro said...

Aunt Dayne is so awesome! She's such a welcoming, giving, open lady! I can't wait to see more blogs from you! ;)