As the woodworking community begins to read and absorb “Make a Joint Stool from a Tree,” there have been some interesting criticisms.
The most pointed: “The problem with (Peter) Follansbee’s 17th century methods are that they are completely impractical for the average woodworker.”
Strong words. And as someone who has read this book about a dozen times, I disagree and stamp my little foot as hard as I can. This book introduces you to an entirely different mindset and method of work that machine-trained woodworkers will feel uncomfortable with.
Even if you never work green wood – and I highly recommend that you try it some day – there are lessons throughout this book for anyone who cares about handwork.
But I’m not going to fill your ears any more with my blather. There is an interesting debate on the book going on at Rob Campbell’s blog. You can read his detailed review of the book here.
Feel free to weigh in with your thoughts in the comments section. Either way is fine by me. Let truth and falsehood grapple and all that.
Also be sure to check out the follow-up entry, with some interesting stuff from Peter Follansbee, one of the authors of the book.
By the way, you really should bookmark Rob’s blog. I’ll have more to say about his personal journey in the coming weeks. First, I’ve got to go dovetail five drawers.
— Christopher Schwarz