Wednesday, January 29, 2014

Lohr School of Woodworking Alumni Furniture Gallery!'ve been lucky to have spent the day going through our collection of alumni furniture photos so that we can put them up on our new website in a slideshow gallery to share.  These are pieces that students have made after their time with us here in the shop.  I must say that this is an amazing collection of work in all different styles and we can't be more proud to say that these individuals are our students. The furniture in this gallery represents countless hours of our students' work.  Woodworking and furniture making/design is a labor of passion for many students and some have even branched out to start their own businesses! It's been a pleasure to put all of these photos in one place.

Thank you to those alumni students that shared their photos with us and if any of you have any finished work that you'd like included, send us pictures!

Feel encouraged to admire the JD Lohr School of Woodworking Alumni Furniture Gallery here

Wednesday, January 22, 2014

The Affordable Healthcare Act helps JD Lohr Woodworking!

While we've all heard various media complaints about the Affordable Care Act, all of us here at JD Lohr Woodworking can say is that the new law and the ability to enroll sure was fantastic for us. As a company benefit, we were offered enrollment with a leading health care provider. Better yet, we even had plan options!

We all are relieved to finally be able to have respectable "real" health insurance provided by the company. Boss man Jeff is ecstatic as he was previously unable to get health insurance due to the earlier pre-existing conditions clause insurance companies were able to use to cherry pick who they insured. In the end, January 1, 2014 was a big day for employees of JD Lohr Woodworking as we rang in the new year by finally getting respectable health insurance. It's comforting to know that as a small, hard-working business, we can all rely on staying healthy to keep the eager woodworking students educated and the one-of-a-kind furniture being made! We still, however, committed to keeping our fingers.

Wednesday, January 15, 2014

Photographs of Our Latest Finished Live Edge Tables

As promised, I am excited to share with you, readers, some of the photographs that Eoin so skillfully captured of our three live edge tables before they were shipped to South America! The photographs speak a thousand words so I will only label them with a brief description. We are happy and proud to have been commissioned to make these pieces. We hope that they'll be enjoyed by visitors to the Vik Hotels in Chile and Uruguay for years to come. If you're interested, read about the history of the projects from day one in my previous posts: the beginning stages, dovetail bone joinery and oiling, and packing and shipping

Live Edge Bigleaf Maple Burl coffee table with figured, curly Maple base

Curved joint with Maple dovetail bones joining the two Bigleaf Maple slabs together to compose the top of the coffee table

The textured live edge of the Bigleaf Maple slabs with bark removed contrasts perfectly with the straight, angled base

Brown Oak Burl live edge table with turned legs and Walnut dovetail bones

Brown Oak Burl live edge table top with natural voids left in their natural state in the vein of George Nakashima style

Live Edge Chestnut Oak table with turned legs and Walnut dovetail bones

Walnut dovetail bones used to strengthen and ensure the natural splits and cracks don't grow over time

And, finally, the proud Lohr Woodworking team sitting on the finished coffee table to show it's strength and functionality. Cheers to another successfully finished project, gentlemen!

Friday, January 10, 2014

Live Edge Tables Begin their Journey Overseas!

As the snow fell down this morning in Schwenksville, Pennsylvania, we bid farewell to the three live edge tables as they start their journey overseas to their new home at the Vik Hotels in Chile and Uruguay.

The Handcrafted Delivery truck made it's way up the long driveway to the shop bright and early this morning. We were lucky to be sent Mike and Mike, the masters of packing and moving, to carefully prepare our tables for their trip. Handcrafted Delivery will take them on the first leg to Connecticut. In Connecticut, they will be loaded in a container to head over to the South American hotels.

We admired the work of Mike and Mike as they wrapped layer upon layer of protective covering around the tables. Plastic then cardboard was used as the first layer to protect the fragile and curvy nature of the live edges. Then blankets were wrapped around every inch of each table and held securely with large quantities of packing tape.

It's quite a relief to know that any concerns we may have had about safely shipping these one-of-a-kind pieces such a long distance is a concern we need not have. Watching these two guys at work made us nothing short of confident that the tables will travel and arrive safely at their next destination. A huge thank you to Handcrafted Delivery and the fine employees they have in Mike and Mike!

We wish the tables a safe adventure as they make their way overseas. And, we are hopeful and confident that upon their arrival, Vik Hotels and their visitors will admire and appreciate the pieces for years to come!

Keep your eye out for a blog post early next week sharing the photographs Eoin took of the finished tables last week. Be ready for some phenomenal images of the tables and their intricate details. I am eager to share them with you, readers!

Friday, January 3, 2014

Photographing the Chile-bound Live Edge Tables!

As the new year opens at Lohr Woodworking, we have finished, rubbed out, and are preparing to say goodbye to our three live edge tables as they near their Chile-bound shipment date. During our final days with the tables, we have been prepping for their official photo session.

One wall of the shop is an infinity wall (aka cyclorama) and is built with a curved edge joining the wall with the floor. The wall is designed for photographing our finished furniture without a distracting, harsh corner to catch shadow. Last week, we cleared the back of the shop, removed dust and dirt from all places we could get to, and repainted the wall/floor a clean white.

Today began the official live edge Chile tables photo shoot. Eoin came with all the photography equipment we could imagine to capture these pieces as beautifully as they appear in person. After a morning of setting up the diffused lights and playing with exposures, f-stops, and all those other fancy camera terms, he spent the day hard at work behind the lens.

He did an amazing job of capturing these pieces in their entirety down to their finest details. Each table is live edge piece made but of different hardwoods and varying drastically in size so it was impressive to watch him crawling, laying, standing, and climbing ladders to be sure he/we can share them with admirers without any question that they're presented beautifully and accurately.

The majority of the day was spent photographing the huge live edge Bigleaf Maple coffee table. We completed the maple base before Christmas and finished the entire piece just in time for it to be the star of this shoot.

Everything about this piece took thought, creativity, and precise hands to build. Eoin was a master at documenting the live edge slabs, the carefully constructed strong base, the strategically repaired natural voids and flaws, and the complex joinery. We are lucky to have such a skilled photographer-and-woodworker amongst us in this Irishman.

He was sure to capture the live edge oak library table as well as the live edge oak crotch slab table before we called it a day. Each table is so unique in it's shape, grain, color, function, and overall appearance so it was so stunning to see each one have their moment perched in the spotlight. They each sat with the infinity wall behind and the careful lighting shining from above them caused them to look as if they were floating in thin air.

And, don't you worry, there were plenty of the four of us, Lohr Woodworking team, perched upon this piece. First intended to show the strength, functionality, and practicality of the table, it quickly turned into a family photo shoot with fun poses and jokes between snapshots.

What an exciting day! Thanks to Eoin for his skills, equipment, and company. And, thanks to Jeff for constantly designing such exquisite furniture for us to work on. I am one lucky apprentice!