Natural furniture-making with children

Children are capable of making beautiful furniture with a little bit of help and guidance.  

This stool was made by an 8 year old boy. This is the first piece of furniture Hugh has made. Maia made one too. They are so lovely. The top is local Bunya pine and the legs are from local QLD maple. 

Hugh's Bunya and Maple stool.
What enormous sense of achievement and satisfaction they both gained out of making these stools - so absolutely delighted and inspired. They made them yesterday, then sanded them and oiled them today. I asked them what's next ... "a table!" Fabulous. 

Hugh finished his stool today  - sanded it back and oiled it with olive oil from the kitchen.
It'll be wonderful seated at a handmade table with handmade chairs, in the house we built, eating the food we've grown. I'm currently looking for a potter who will teach us how to make our own plates and bowls.

These stools are the result of a 90 minute 'cool stool' workshop for kids at the Maleny Wood Expo. An amazing team of committed woodworkers guided a small group of keen young children in each making their own stool. There's talk of some regular kids woodworking sessions - they've already signed up!

Maia with her stool. It's a perfect height for the kids and easy to move around to various activities around the house.

Hugh has always been interested in woodwork and has had a 'proper' set of tools for years - he seemed somewhat insulted when I bought him a 'kiddie' set at age 2. When he was 4 years old he capably sanded back an outdoor table. Both Maia and Hugh have helped in the building of our house too.  Such practical skills are great confidence and resilience-builders.

We're all keen to get our woodlot planted now, and while this is growing, I am so delighted that members of our community have a large woodlot where we can source logs in the meantime. The kids love the idea of growing their own house, so we are thinking to plant some great trees that can be used for both house-building and furniture making - with some species that they could start to harvest from in 20-30 years. A great homeschool action-research project coming up.

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