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Poppy Seed Pods and Vase

Always a great weekend event at the Totally Turning NWA Woodworking Event in Saratoga. Award for Second Place 2016 for my seed pods and ash vase. I derive much of my inspiration from Mother Nature.  Poppy Seed Pods and Vase are made on the Wood Lathe. The wood is Madrone from California.  The cylindrical shape that comes off the lathe begins to distort as the wood dries. The asymmetrical and organic shape is what I am looking to achieve. Once dry each pod receives a series of secondary operations at the studio bench. This includes carving, airbrush painting, texturing and assembly.  These techniques often require more time than it takes to produce the shape.

Finishing Secret

Many years ago I took a continuing education furniture class. I was building furniture for our apartment, but was not happy with the outcome.  I discussed this concern with the teacher that I was able to build complicated items that looked great until a finish was applied.   He then shared the secret rule for making good looking pieces.  That is to spend at least one half the time on finishing as it takes to build it. That was a wake up moment.

The poppy seed pods and vase is Ash wood with a black stain. Ash has open wood pores and I apply white liming wax on the surface of the black dye. The white pigment fills the pores creating an effect that highlights the wood grain. A Purple Heart wood rim is at the top edge of the vase. The contrast between the black Ash stain and the red work well together.

Another item inspired by Nature are these sea urchins. Sea Urchin Ornaments

Gift Ideas

There are similar items in my Etsy Shop that you may want to investigate.


Everything that I make is from my studio in New Jersey, USA.


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