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Harnessing Chaos

Hello, all!

April has brought about a creative tidal wave! This month, Ive focused most of my energy on making "chaos" patterned boards! There's been an overwhelming amount of positive feedback, so this style is officially a permanent addition to my stock! 

The most popular question I've gotten about chaos designs is "how do you do that?". I wish that I could claim magic, but unfortunately I still haven't learned any. Although, it is fortunate that my process is easier to explain!

To make a chaos design I start off by creating 2 end grain cutting boards, no different from any that you would regularly see in my shop, instagram, or Facebook. It's at this point that the actual process begins. I take both boards, and cut them into diagonal strips, longways (imagine "hotdog style"). I then alternate the pieces and combine both boards! Glue, and into the clamps the new board goes. After the period of glue drying, i then cut the board into a series of diagonal cross cuts (imagine "hamburger style"), mix the pieces up again, glue, and let dry. Lastly, I make one more series of longways cuts & repeat the mixing up/glue process. All done! From there it's treated just like any other board for flattening/handles/sanding.

The second most popular question, which deserves explanation, is "Why are they more expensive?".  Now that I've explained the process of how I create chaos designs, you know that I have to make 2 end grain boards for this one, so materials are a huge factor when it comes to chaos designs. The amount of initial wood needed is high, and the dozens of cuts made produce a decent enough amount of waste to reduce the initial boards in size dramatically (which is why i need a second board to combine/make up for it). Secondly, a normal end grain cutting board will take me 2-3 days to make (including glue drying/wait time), should everything go smoothly. A chaos design can take me 5-6 days (including glue drying/wait time), should everything go smoothly. Double the woodDouble the labor!

The last major question that I've gotten has been "Can you make me one that looks like this one?". Chaos boards are too unpredictable to be "designed". If you own one, then you truly have something that is impossible to recreate. I don't mean that just in terms of wood grains differing, I mean that chaos is chaos. Dozens of cuts, mixing the wood pieces, planing the edges - these processes can't be perfectly and accurately recreated. Embrace your chaos!

What woods would you like to see in a chaos board? Leave a comment! Maybe you'll see it come to life!

 

 

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Mentioned during #TryPod Month!

Hello, all! 

I apologize for the recent silence. In the few weeks since going full time, Ive been putting my hands to work most of the time that I've been awake so that I can get boards out the door! In the first month, I've scored a huge permanent retail stock in Ladels & Linens, a kitchen shoppe in  the cities of Richmond, Lexington, & Roanoke, Virginia!

So, this post isn't going to focus on wood or boards, progress or failure. I'm a day late of March's end, but i needed to touch on #trypod month! TryPod month is the entire length of March, and its dedicated to listening to, sharing, and introducing new people to podcasts that they haven't heard before. Among my favorites are Radiolab, Stuff You Should Know, Sword & Scale, Embedded, Snap Judgement, Unsolved Murders, & Lore. If you're interested in science, history, true crime, in depth NPR news, or fairytales, I highly recommend all of the above. They're entertaining & educational... who doesn't like to learn new stuff?! Don't know how to listen, or never have? Its super simple. If you have an iPhone (or iPod), you just need to go to the widget that says "podcasts", it comes on your phone from the factory. Type in the podcast in the search bar, and click "subscribe" - viola! you'll be listening right away. If you don't have an iPhone you can listen, too! just look up any podcast directory and you can listen all the same, or you can even listen at home on your laptop or computer. The best part is that all of the Podcasts I mentioned are free, unless you decide to donate! 

The photo below is a podcast that I listened to just as TryPod month was ending, from Stuff You Should Know. I made it all the way to the end, and found out that my cutting boards were featured in the listener mail section! I was ecstatic to hear that Josh & Chuck were excited about them. 

Have a favorite podcast already? Drop a comment! Ill be sure to listen!

Now go, subscribe, and listen to your hearts content!

 

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Permanently pushing forward

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Permanently pushing forward

February 22, 2017 was officially the beginning of my career as a full time, self employed man. 30 days prior i put in my notice at my job and began to prepare myself to walk away from security & stability, and begin developing the mindset to survive & thrive in an uncomfortable position. 

   "You have to stop accepting the reality of other people and start accepting your own reality"

I decided that my reality is making my way with my own two hands, making my dream become a reality instead of working for someone else to make their dreams become a reality. The Timbered Wolf has been pushing forward, failing forward, for a year, and it was time to take my passion to the next level. 

To any and all who've supported me, whether it be through encouragement or through purchases, thank you - you've brought me to this point. To those that i haven't had the opportunity to work with up to this point, or whose eyes I'm just reaching, i look forward to working with you in the future. Above all, I appreciate those of you who take the time to follow my journey. Now that I've got the time, you'll be hearing from me far more often!

Christopher Dean 

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Giveaway!

February 4, 2017

Hello, all!

The past few days I've been running a giveaway - most of you saw it on my Instagram. For those who didn't - don't fret! Ill attempt to do a giveaway each month via this blog, so you'll have a chance to be included in all future giveaways! 

The end of January giveaway was the pictured small end grain cutting board. Zebrawood (a personal favorite, and I use it as often as possible) from West Africa, and Sapele from tropical areas of Africa. Names went in the hat this evening, and J. McGann is this months winner! if you could, send me an email at thetimberedwolf@gmail.com with your address & info, and I'll get this in the mail for you as soon as possible!

For those who didn't win, you're also a winner. I'll be sending out an email with a coupon code for a discount on boards! If you were interested in the one given away, I still have 2 left. I'll leave the link below. Thanks, y'all! 

Christopher Dean

Owner/Maker at The Timbered Wolf, LLC

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Welcome to the Blog!

January 22, 2017.

I wanted to take a moment and formally introduce myself.

My name's Christopher Dean & I grew up right here in Richmond, Virginia.

For most of the past year, I've been hand making one of a kind, high quality, exotic & domestic wood cutting boards, charcuterie boards, serving trays, lazy susans, and a few other odds & ends. When I began my small business journey, it was long hours and lots of sweat - I didn't have any power tools when I got started, so I was having to hand flatten and sand everything (Eric Thomas motivational videos & sugar carried me through those times). Fortunately, I've made it to the point where I have a few more power tools, and can make more because of it (still running on Eric Thomas & Sugar, haha)! It's been quite the journey for me and I hope that it continues to be. I've enjoyed the work, the things I've learned along the way, and all the wonderful people that I've had the opportunity to come into contact with because of it.

At the start of 2017, my dream for what the Timbered Wolf would become came true, and I officially formed The Timbered Wolf, LLC. I'm a single person small business owner & maker. The reality of it is a little frightening, but very exciting. 

This blog will serve as an archive of information that I learn along the way (the easy and hard way), woods that I use, and the process boards and projects go through. I hope some of you tag along! Don't hesitate to ask questions, leave comments, or generally get involved in the process!

     - Christopher Dean                               

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