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Every year Boston’s North Bennet Street School graduates 18 or so astonishingly accomplished furniture makers from its two-year Cabinet and Furniture Making program. Instruction at the school is based around furniture from the late 18th and early 19th centuries—not because they are period purists, the school’s staff says, but because once you know how to build that demanding stuff, you can build most anything.
More on the North Bennet Street School
Stellar Training in Craftsmanship. Period North Bennet Street School’s Legacy of Craftsmanship
North Bennet Street is celebrating its 125th year in 2010, and to take the pulse of the furniture program I spent a day there recently. This slide show features an interview with Steve Brown, the lead instructor in the program, as well as comments from a variety of former students at the school. It is illustrated with furniture by graduates of the program from the 1970s through the present—some pieces made while they were still at school, some made long after they had launched their careers in the field.
In addition to the full-time, two-year program, the school offers a host of workshops and shorter courses that might last three months, a week, or a weekend.
All four teachers in the two-year program are North Bennet Street graduates, and so is the director of the school, Miguel Gomez-Ibanez, who left a flourishing career in architecture to attend the school.
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Goodd day to you,
The North Bennett Street slide show was very interesting to watch and I have some similar experiences of my own. I have been running the Woodwork Academy in Johannesburg, South Africa for the past four years and we have CEO's, computer buffs, bankers etc. who all come for the same reason: to learn fine woodworking and build their own furniture.
A legacy like the North Bennett Street is truely enviable.
Thanks for sharing. Last summer I was able to take a course at CT Valley School of Woodworking with Janet Collins. I can't tell you how awesome it was and how much I learned. We have many others from the school teach us, including Dan Faia and Phil Lowe. I feel fortunate that I live so close to many great schools here in CT and that I get to learn from the next generation of masters all under Bob Van Dyke and his school in Manchester, CT.
i have loved the class i took with dan faia. in the photos who's the guy the looks like father time. did he know Noah by any chance
Really well done piece. Felt like I was in the shop hearing the stories. Nice work.
I am an amateur woodworker, and every so often I need a litle inspiration to keep me going, trying to make that masterpiece in the back of my mind. The work I see come out of the North Bennett Street School program never fails to be inspiring. The pieces are works of art.
I was cutting some dovetails recently. Here are the tools that I use when I cut them with hand tools.
Grids and cutouts define a practical piece
Fast, fun approach to making a comfortable, casual seat
In this video Michael finishes the first of the three boxes. Gluing-up, planing, sanding and finishing bring a new piece of art to the world.
In this video Michael starts work on the second box, a carved and painted Saddle lid box.
Michael begins carving the saddle lid box with his ripple pattern along the top. Then turns to his 5/30 gouge to texture the sides of the box. This isn't work…
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