Locust Bowl – Daniel D. Brown, 2018

I really wanted to make something when I got home so I decided to finally make a shallow bowl I’ve been planning. We have a tiny basement bathroom & shower where I clean up after being covered in sawdust and grime. Every time I take everything out of my pockets to switch into/out of my shop clothes, I wish I had a bowl to put it all in. So this is a utilitarian bowl for above the toilet.
I acquired a bunch of free locust logs from a tree cut down in Squirrel Hill last summer, so I carved out the shallow bowl with an angle grinder and @kutzall shaping wheel, crudely hacked it from the log with my cheap chainsaw, ground the bottom shape, sanded until I couldn’t see through the air, used a router and my flattening jig to flatten the bottom, branded the bottom, and finished it with some @generalfinishes Arm-R-Seal. It would look a lot fancier if I had a lathe. But I’m pretty happy with it for a couple hours of just playing with tools.
I fully anticipate that it will eventually crack. It was a big log and it’s only been drying in my basement for like 9 months. It seemed pretty dry inside, but I know it hasn’t been long enough for that thickness. When it does I’ll just make a better one.

View this post on Instagram

I really wanted to make something when I got home so I decided to finally make a shallow bowl I’ve been planning. We have a tiny basement bathroom & shower where I clean up after being covered in sawdust and grime. Every time I take everything out of my pockets to switch into/out of my shop clothes, I wish I had a bowl to put it all in. So this is a utilitarian bowl for above the toilet. I acquired a bunch of free locust logs from a tree cut down in Squirrel Hill last summer, so I carved out the shallow bowl with an angle grinder and @kutzall shaping wheel, crudely hacked it from the log with my cheap chainsaw, ground the bottom shape, sanded until I couldn’t see through the air, used a router and my flattening jig to flatten the bottom, branded the bottom, and finished it with some @generalfinishes Arm-R-Seal. It would look a lot fancier if I had a lathe. But I’m pretty happy with it for a couple hours of just playing with tools. I fully anticipate that it will eventually crack. It was a big log and it’s only been drying in my basement for like 9 months. It seemed pretty dry inside, but I know it hasn’t been long enough for that thickness. When it does I’ll just make a better one.

A post shared by Laughing Mantis Studio (@laughingmantisstudio) on

Mulberry Trivet – Daniel D. Brown, 2017, Wood

I had a really old dry branch of what I believe might be Osage Orange (or perhaps locust or something completely different). It’s mulberry. I decided to make a little trivet/serving board out of it so I can eat from hot dishes in my recliner. Most of its creation is detailed in the multi-image instagram post below. It turned out very functional and fairly beautiful – especially with the live edge.

View this post on Instagram

I had to wait for some glue to dry today on the lamp project. And the wife is out for ladies’ night. So I decided to make a hot plate/serving tray/cheesboard/whatever out of an old log I picked up out of a neighbors yard almost a year ago. The log looked old and gray when I found it and I’ve been wanting to see what it looks like inside for ages. Now that I built a straight edge jig, I had a way to give it flat sides so I could run it through the table saw. I just made a bunch of 0.5” thick strips and glued them together. That grain is poppin! I still don’t know what kind of wood it is. Thought? Maybe Osage orange. Or locust. Or something completely different. There’s no stain – the wood just has a beautiful yellow/orange hue after finishing with walnut oil.

A post shared by Laughing Mantis Studio (@laughingmantisstudio) on