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Mid-Winter Newsletter: NZCFW

Welcome to our latest newsletter stuffed full of what’s been happening, what’s going to be happening and what we would like to be happening!
New Short Course – The Mark of a Well-Made Drawer – 1st-3rd August
Carving Courses in August – Intro to Carving, Spoon Carving & Letter Carving
What’s been happening in the workshop these last few months…..
2024 Furniture Makers’ Programme
Emerge Exhibition
Beginners’ Intensive Programme & Scholarship
Congratulations to David Haig
Read on………
“The Mark of a Well-Made Drawer” with Stuart Faulkner
1st/2nd/3rd August 2023


Stuart is heading over to teach Term 3 of the Furniture Makers’ Programme and we have managed to sneak in a short course beforehand. In this 3-day course students will enjoy the experience of crafting and fitting a classic drawer. A small sample drawer will be made in order to cover all the fine intricasies for a well made and well fitted drawer. Details are on our website here.

We have a few spaces still available on the following courses:-

Intro to Carving – 12th/13th August
Intro to Spoon Carving 14th/15th August
Intro to Letter Carving 16th/17th August

Get in touch if you are interested…………


It’s been a busy few months with our visiting tutors and there’s been a great buzz and energy in the short course workshop teaching area.
A huge thank you to Andy Buck, Hape Kiddle, Dave Gilberd of Goldbeard Guitars and Ben Grant for sharing their passion, wisdom and experience with our students.

Andy taught a 5-day design workshop during his fleeting visit to New Zealand and we talked him (& Ben & Lou) into staying around to carve a mobius with Hape – great sessions, great conversations and all very inspiring.

Hape Kiddle taught four different carving courses and organised some wonderful evening get togethers which we have now called “chip & chat” – chipping and chiseling timber, eating chips and hanging out with each other. Pure gold. Looking forward to the next visit Hape.

Ben was teaching assistant to Lou Fuller who taught the set project in Term 2 of the iconic David Haig hoop stool. Coincidentally, David Haig was teaching the same course at the same time at the Center for Furniture Craftsmanship in Maine – the same project at both sides of the world! More about David’s trip later in the newsletter.

Dave Gilberd had a full class of students making their own acoustic guitar with one student fulfilling a long ambition to create his own flamenco guitar. A fabulous three weeks with six stunning guitars and six very happy students.

So this is a little bit of me (Helen aka the manager) sharing my recent experience in the workshop. I am often asked if I do any woodworking and the answer is I don’t. It’s a pretty hectic but very fulfilling job running this special place, but I decided that I would participate in Hape Kiddle’s Mobius/Gidgee 3-day course even though I was very busy and in the thick of a funding application. I turned off my phone, closed the office door and became a student. I absolutely loved it and was so proud of the piece I created – I could hardly believe it (Thanks Hape!).

Anyway the point of this story is that the experience made me truly understand how our students feel at the end of a course – happy, proud, focused, fulfilled, nourished, refreshed and taking away with them such a great sense of achievement (or in my case I was just downright smug).

Being creative is such an important part of our well being and brings a much better balance in life.


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