Woodworking Network recently named Laura Zahn of Allied Woodshop as one of '40 Under 40' who are destined to make an impact on the wood products manufacturing industry in North America. You can see Laura's '40 Under 40' profile, along with 39 others, here. Thank you for the honor!
Here's what's on our list. We guarantee you'll find something for everyone on your list too.
- Live Edge Table woodworking workshop at Allied Woodshop
- Tite-Mark marking gauge by Glen-Drake Toolworks
- Lie-Nielsen No. 102 Low Angle Block Plane
- Frog Blocks by Monroe Workshop Toys
- White Oak Carabiner Baby Rattle by Knotwork LA
- Spalted sycamore from Angel City Lumber
- The Everyday Board from Would-Works
- A Danielle Rose Byrd wooden bowl
- Offerman Woodshop OWS Hatchet Kit
- Membership at Community Woodshop LA
- Carve: A Simple Guide to Whittling by Melanie Abrantes
We're pleased to partner with Would Works for the 2017 holiday season. Would Works is a social enterprise that puts men and women who are living in poverty in Los Angeles to work sanding and finishing wooden homewares. In exchange for their work, the Would Works Artisans receive credit toward a need they have (e.g. a new pair of eyeglasses, a bus ticket home, or a deposit for an apartment).
Would Works will be working out of Allied Woodshop's new classroom and community space to gear up for holiday sales. This will provide the Artisans with bench space for their sanding operations, good ventilation, bright natural light, and storage space for their supplies and finished product.
We welcome the Would Works Artisans and look forward to a lasting partnership. How can you help? Consider purchasing a beautiful charcuterie board, cocktail board, or bottle opener for yourself or to gift to others over the holidays.
CERF+ awarded twenty Get Ready Grants to individuals and groups in craft disciplines to implement safety measures, safeguard studios, and protect careers. Allied Woodshop is pleased to have received a $1,500 grant to improve fire safety in our shop. We will use the funding to purchase flammables cabinets, fire-safe trash cans, fire extinguishers, and a ventilation system for our finishing room. We will also create a cheat sheet for the safe disposal of solvents and finishes and a curriculum to educate collective members, instructors, and students about the safe storage and disposal of flammable materials.
We would like to thank CERF+ for the work that they do to make the world a safer place for artists and craftspeople. If you would like to learn more or apply for a Get Ready Grant, click here. The deadline for the next application cycle is November 30, 2018.
People find their way to the woodshop for various reasons, but increasingly we see individuals who are seeking escape from the busyness of their lives spent in front of computers and tied to phones and social apps. They want to experience the "flow state" that is often associated with mastery over a set of skills, and by definition requires complete attention and focus. While woodworking can offer this respite, it is a state that we should seek in all of our work (and social interactions) and not just in our hobby or craft.
I recently listened to Cal Newport and Ezra Klein discuss just this idea - of focusing on what matters, regaining "cognitive fitness", and taking control of your time - in an episode of The Ezra Klein Show. Newport calls this "cognitive craftsmanship". Given my line of work, I was struck by the term and the concept and I thought that others who appreciate the work happening at Allied Woodshop might also enjoy a listen. For your consideration, here is Cal Newport on doing Deep Work and escaping social media.
In an over-stimulating world fueled by technology and seemingly limitless access to information, you might find yourself seeking simplicity. The design world itself tells us that we want products, spaces, and lifestyles that are simple, minimal, and beautiful. When was the last time you opened your Instagram account and saw an airy, white space with a single, beautifully crafted and handmade item? Probably seconds ago.
I find myself seeking this same simplicity in my work and in my business. I've intentionally nurtured a space for furniture makers that it small and (hopefully) enduring. Sometimes I wonder if I should try to grow my business by pursuing investors, hiring employees, adding more benches and classes, or opening additional locations. But then I remember that I'm happy having a business that I'm intimately connected to. Reading this article, The Beauty of a Simple Business, helped to remind me that keeping my business simple is an intentional choice, one that I'm happy with, and not a lack of ambition on my part.
Have you ever found yourself wondering how industry and craft might continue to thrive in a city like Los Angeles? If so, you're not alone. Allied Woodshop founder, Laura Zahn, thinks regularly about how we can build community around craft and new models for contemporary makers. She will explore themes in craft, teaching, and community building in an upcoming panel at next week's Furniture Society Conference in Philadelphia, PA along with colleagues JD Sassaman of Autodesk Pier 9, RH Lee of Offerman Woodshop, and Sarah Marriage of A Workshop of Our Own.
Interested in attending the conference? Register here.