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Seize the day: Novice woodworker Allison is handy on the tools

Be Creative
September 10, 2020

Against the grain, novice woodworker Allison is handy on the tools

Allison took up woodworking a year ago after she and husband Ross downsized from their family home in Hawthorne, Brisbane and moved to Halcyon Greens in March 2019.

“I have never done woodworking before and to be honest, it was probably one of the last things I thought I would ever do among the abundant choice of activities at Halcyon Greens,” Allison said.

“I am definitely not the crafty type, but I enjoy learning new things and woodwork is a great medium for this.

“I was initially quite fearful of some of the machinery, especially the drop saws, but I have learnt howto use a wide variety of tools and it is definitely something you get used to with familiarity and use.”

Allison learnt woodworking skills from fellow homeowner Ron Smith, who holds workshops on picture framing, lathe operation and ukulele and box making at the onsite workshed.

She spends a few hours at least once a week at the workshed and her completed projects include a wooden bowl, jewellery box, an activity board for her granddaughter, ornaments and picture frames.

“I love the sense of achievement upon completing a project and the feeling that I have created something useful,” Allison said.

“I also love the history behind certain pieces of wood in the workshed, some of which have been donated by other homeowners.”

Allison’s wooden jewellery box contains ebony from a piano that was more than 100 years old, while the bowl is crafted from a piece of timber from the original Busselton Jetty in Western Australia, which was built in the 1860s.

“From a sustainability perspective, it is great to be able to repurpose timber into something creative, functional and beautiful,” she added.

Allison’s workshed buddy is usually her husband, Ross, who she says is a useful companion to double-check measurements and workshop ideas. “It is a great shared experience,” Allison said.

“However, if Ross is not available, I’m happy to work alongside any of the workshed group as they are laidback, very welcoming and always happy to share their knowledge.”