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Faux Tortoise Shell Bowl

Faux Tortoise Shell Bowl is from the Norfolk Island Pine species.  This is an unusual tree in that the branches grow out like spokes on a bike wheel in concentric layers.  Other trees grow  branches randomly. The tree is native to Hawaii and Florida. When the branch is cut at the tree trunk the knot appears as a red dot.

This wood will absorb Linseed oil and becomes translucent as the cells absorb the oils and the oil hardens. This piece looks like tortoise shell. The process is time consuming as the wood form soaks in the oil for several weeks. Then it will dry for months to bring out the incredible colors.


It is this wood that began my journey to explore wood turning.  After thirty years as an industrial package designer and making products for clients I began searching for a medium to making art for art’s sake.  I came across a Norfolk Island Bowl in a gallery.  The artist is a wood turner in Hawaii. Ron Kent, is retiring and this would be an investment opportunity that I should not miss, said the gallery director.  It is only $3000 and I thought for $3000 I could figure this out and get the necessary tools. A few weeks later I found myself taking wood turning classes and owning a $2000 lathe.  It was a great investment. I was becoming addicted to the process of peeling away layers of wood to reveal hidden colors and textures.

Gift Ideas

If you like the Faux Tortoise Shell Bowl take a look in my store. On this piece you can clearly see the red knots. Norfolk Island Pine Vase Face

Additional unique items are available in my Etsy shop.


I produce all of my pieces in my studio in Montvale, New Jersey, USA.


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