Full Use of Good Cedar – A Family Story

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This past year, Peter, Caroline, and Lizzie put their heads together to consider what might be a good birthday gift for their father.  Recognizing the skill and enthusiasm he brings to wood working, they asked themselves “why not get him some special lumber from our buddies out at Hyla Woods?”.  The transaction was made, Paul was thrilled, and some months went by.  On Christmas morning Paul returned their generosity by presenting each of his children with their own special box – made from the cedar they gave to him.  Back atcha!


Here are comments from Paul:

“I was really excited on my birthday when my children gave me the three long 3” thick boards of beautiful clear cedar from Hyla Woods and immediately started to sketch different pieces I could make with this ancient and distinct wood.  I came to a long narrow table design using boards that are 2” thick and which include dovetail joints.  I had never done dovetail joints.  So after running the boards through the band saw and thickness planner I had 2 inch boards and ½ inch thick boards as remainder with which I figured to practice some dovetails.  First I read the articles and looked at videos and then completed a few test joints and different dovetail combinations between tails and pins.  Then I came upon the idea of making 4 boxes as a gifts to my family the cedar boards that were given to me.  I learned how to do dovetails, thirty two of them!  And I learned how to be patient and get creative to fill in gaps and nicks caused in the  dovetail making with a soft long grain wood like cedar.  The boxes make turned out pretty well, especially when fully sanded and oiled revealing the beauty of the cedar wood.”

By coincidence, wood from the same large cedar that died of old age was already in the family home – in the form of cedar paneling behind the bed in the master bedroom.


Comments from Jinx, the mother/wife in this adventure:

“A house remodel opens up the opportunity to bring personal meaning and creativity into a space.  As we made decisions, and kept to a budget, we realized we couldn’t afford to fill our entire house with beautiful wood and other materials as we may have desired, but we could find small places to highlight some of these materials.  We also wanted to draw on products being created and sold by people we knew from across the years.

 Enter Hyla Woods.  Our family has known the Hayes family for generations and are generally astounded at their ability to constantly inform the rest of us about how to stay connected to the earth, to move and live in it, and to foster responsible growth for future generations.  We hoped to find a place to put some of the Hyla Woods product in the house and Peter and Pam suggested maybe a door or a counter top. We visited the Hyla Woods forest to see what wood was available and fell in love with a particular batch of cedar. In working with our builder, we decided a whole wall in the bedroom we would lovely, filling the room with warmth. “

But there is more to this story.  How will that table that Paul is making from the remainder of the gifted wood come out?  Stay tuned!