Few things are as gratifying as evidence that a student has turned techniques from a class into a solid piece of new work. Mike P. recently blew my socks off with the following photos.
Mike signed up for my built-in furniture class at Marc Adams with one particular project in mind: to outfit this rather ho-hum living room wall with a mantel and bookcases.
But just as impressive as the bookcases are a couple of pieces you could easily overlook: those steins to the right of the fireplace. Those, too, are Mike’s work. Made from wood, they’re completely functional, including the hinged tops. Mike calls them the culmination of his longtime exploration of mug-making, which began with prompting from a beer-drinking partner at work.
He makes the mugs (or steins, as in this case) from eight vertically segmented pieces glued up into a cylinder. The base is a disc joined to the body with a mortise and tenon joint. He turns the vessels on the lathe to their final shape, using a shop-made chuck to grip the ends.
The handles are the most difficult part, and certainly the most time consuming, since they must be fitted seamlessly to the sides.