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Wooden Dining and Kitchen Accessories

I made my first wooden utensils shortly after I began working with wood, about thirty-five years ago. From the beginning I was using wood from the branches of native trees.

I was living in Santa Fe, New Mexico at the time, so the wood was mostly juniper, the most common tree in the foothills surrounding the ancient city.

These trees are stunted and twisted by the region's dry, windy climate and their branches are never straight. My utensils' handles were never perfectly straight either, as I followed each branch's natural contours.

Their forms seemed to emerge organically as I carved.

I let the branch tell me what I was going to make, as I made it. Sometimes the wood's form suggested that it wanted to become a spoon, but it might just as

easily say that, no, it wanted to become something else, maybe a spatula or a spreader, or maybe a "spirtle"--not quite a spoon and not a spatula--but the perfect stirring implement.

As my interests have changed and my customers' demands have dictated, I've branched into other categories of wood products, but I still enjoy making a wooden utensil that is both perfectly suited to its task and pleasing to the eye & touch.

So, If there is a type of utensil not currently offered here, please contact me with your request. I like nothing more than applying my personal style and decades of experience to making a one-of-a-kind kitchen implement as a functional sculpture just for you.

Care of Wooden Utensils

I am frequently asked how to care for wooden utensils. In most cases, a rinse in warm tap water and wipe with a paper towel immediately after use will suffice. If time doesn't allow an immediate rinsing, and food has dried onto the surface of the implement, the use of mild dish detergent is warranted. I hand-rub a nontoxic finish made from natural oils and beeswax into each utensil I make. Without the frequent re-application of a similar substance, all wooden utensils will eventually dry out and may become rough to the touch. If this occurs you may want to sand out the roughness with fine sandpaper or steel wool. Once the wood is smooth again, you can apply mineral oil or another non-toxic wood finish. One of the best finishes I have found for use on wooden utensils is Badger Unscented Balm. Developed by a woodworker to treat rough dry hands, it is completely safe for use on all of your wooden utensils. The ingredients are organic extra virgin olive oil, castor oil, and beeswax. It can be found at most drugstores and grocery outlets in the U.S and Canada or at badgerbalm.com.

This site and its contents copyright 1994-2015 by Dale Randles

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