Our one-week taster course is designed to give you an all-round introduction to furniture making aimed with those with absolutely no experience. Don't worry you will be guided all the way through the week. Gaining skills and confidence. This is a great way to see if furniture making is something you would like to do as a career or develop as a hobby.
We cover many techniques over the course of the week, from the absolute basics and more advanced methods of woodwork.
Using the skills you acquire you will produce a piece that you can take home with you at the end of the week.
The first day is entirely dedicated to sharpening – one of the most fundamentally important skills of woodwork and the starting point for every aspiring furniture maker. We will cover blade steel types, blade bevel angles, using water-cooled grinding systems, honing on sharpening films and Japanese water stones. By the end of the day you will have chisels and hand plane blades sharp enough to take hairs off the back of your hand.
On day 4 we will glue up the four tray sides, cut the handles using the band saw and then shape them by hand using spokeshaves and rasps. We will also look at veneering, an important and widely used skill in furniture making. By the end of the day the tray will really start to take shape.
If you are considering booking onto a longer course then the one-week taster is a perfect way to see if it is the right decision.
No previous experience is required, just plenty of enthusiasm!
All tools are provided by ‘robinson house studio’, we have toolboxes for each student with everything you need throughout the week. If you have any of your own tools then feel free to bring them along and we can look at tuning and sharpening them.
Class size is only three or four students
On the second day we start to use the tools we have sharpened and look at the three main hand skills – hand planing, sawing and chiseling. You will learn how to properly set up a hand plane so that it takes wood shavings 1000th of an inch thick, how to use a hand saw to cut perfectly to a line, and learn to use a chisel to create perfectly square joints.
The last day is reserved for putting the finishing touches to the tray – gluing on the handles, sanding and cleaning up, and applying a coat of oil by the end of the afternoon. By the end of the week you will have covered basic and advanced furniture making techniques, used a few machines, finished a tray and, most importantly, have had a good time!
If you book a 12, 20 or 50-week course then the cost of the week taster is refunded against the cost of the long course, you have nothing to lose and everything to gain!
You also come away with a handmade tray, one you made yourself by hand.
This is when we begin your project to take home with you. Over the course of the rest of the week, you will make a tray with a veneered base and curved handles. Apart from the initial machining of the components, you will make the entire thing yourself. This day is mainly getting to grips with the router table, and laminating the curved handles at the end of the day.
"I want to send a huge THANK YOU for the brilliant week I spent at 'robinson house studio'. I learned an enormous amount and enjoyed every minute of it. It was also great talking to your colleagues and 1-year students, and learning that they all find you as fantastically inspiring as I have! The atmosphere is very special.
Among the many things that struck me were: 1. How great design is the backbone of everything you do, and 2. How beginner students are expected on Day 1 to strive for the same levels of precision that you achieve.
I have been talking about it all weekend to anyone who will listen, and proudly showing off my 95.00mm block of wood.
Now it’s time to get down to the workshop and start applying what I learned with you. (and buy some more expensive tools of course….such a bore…..)
Thank you again for an unforgettable week!"