Dutch Tool Chest

Posted on August 25, 2014


Dutch Tool Chest on things{we}make

Dutch Tool Chest on Things{we}make

This isn’t a post about making another tool chest; I mean that would be ridiculous for a guy who already owns several. It’s also not about someone going on a course teaching skills that they have already mastered. This too would be ridiculous, as was pointed out to me by the course tutor on the first evening of the tool chest making course I recently attended.

Oh right…yes, I can see that now.

So what is it about? Well, it’s about several things; firstly the fairly quiet resurgence of handwork in the craft of woodworking. The tutor on this particular course was the Woodworker, Author and Publisher Christopher Schwarz who is in my opinion one of the leading writers on the craft in recent years and whose books and articles have had more than a little influence on my own approach to woodwork. For this reason, when it was announced that Chris was teaching in the UK this summer there was no way I wouldn’t be there for some part of that. The course was to build the Dutch Tool Chest, a form made popular in recent years by Chris, entirely using hand tools. Over two days the 18 attendees worked step by step through the processes with demonstrations and support from Chris along the way.

This was not the reverent tool polishing and micrometer twiddling kind of teaching as espoused by some establishments, this was a 3 minute demo and then crack on kinda course. This is how it should be. People should make things and need just enough information to get going, after which they can learn themselves – there’s no substitute for the learning experience that comes from doing things right, or wrong. That kind of learning will leave you with a skill forever. Everyone went at different speeds on the course, which wasn’t really an issue as it left me time to do the second thing I’m going to talk about; along the way I captured progress and the various stages through Instagram, which allowed me to share instantly with followers:

Increasingly at Things{We}Make we find that Instagram and Twitter give us such an instantaneous connection with other like-minded people that it becomes the sharing medium of choice. I made my Instagrams into the video on this post, partly because I’m strange and like to look back at these things and partly to give non-Instagrammers a view into what their missing. It’s cool, right?

So; I learned stuff, I made some great connections with new people both in person and online and I made the most efficient tool chest I have ever seen. Actually when you say it like that, it doesn’t sound that ridiculous after all.


Lost Art Press

Posted in: Ed, Furniture, Woodwork