Come Learn With Me!

If you love wood, perhaps you’d like to dive in and try carving for yourself. I began learning wood carving as preparation for retirement – and found out that it took over my life! The most commonly asked question is: “How do you know how to carve a lion (or cat, dog, three-toed sloth)? The smart answer is: “Cut away all the bits that don’t look like a lion (cat, dog etc.)”. The reality is that there are techniques that can be learned. And it’s not rocket science.

Wood carving as a hobby

Any activity involving edged tools is inherently hazardous. Having said that, I don’t know anyone who has scars as a result of carving with razor sharp hand tools. Ordinary care and common sense will protect your irreplaceable fingers. Carving is very absorbing. It is possible to pick up your tools for five minutes and discover that an hour has gone by. If your work is stressing you out, this is the ideal antidote. You can do what I did; I sharpened my grandfather’s old gouges and started carving a Celtic pattern on the back of a spoon. If your grandfather hadn’t the foresight to cater for your future hobby/obsession, you may need another strategy.

Learn with me!

There is a number of options to choose from. You can have individual or two-to-one sessions or join a small class. I also offer 'Specialised Topic' sessions on letter cutting and oil gilding and I am happy to accomodate you for skill extension sessions once you have mastered the basics.


I offer a relaxed course of tuition in my own small workshop - the one pictured in the 'About Me' page, one-to-one or in a small group of two. I can teach you enough to set you on your personal journey of woody discovery or help develop your existing skill. We begin with basic health and safety topics, essential when dealing with a potentially dangerous activity. As quickly as possible, we’ll move on to actual carving. Initially working on relief carving, we will also take a look at carving in the round. At the end of the day, literally, you will have acquired knowledge of tool types and be able to use them. You will have carved a Celtic knot in low relief or one of a number of simple natural shapes. If you come back for Day Two, you’ll have a small three-dimensional shape, (that’s the carving, not you) probably an animal. Probably not life size.

Along the way, you’ll find out how to transfer your ideas on to the wood via sketches and reference material.

Lunch is included in the day’s activities, coffee or tea will make regular appearances. We can arrange to transfer you to Menstrie if you come from afar. Accommodation can be arranged in any number of local B&Bs or hotels.

So what does it cost?

Individual Tuition:
One day’s tuition of around five hours’ workshop time, including the use of tools and materials: £150.00

Two days' tuition of around five hours each in the workshop, including the use of tools and materials: £200.00

Other sessions can be arranged to suit your individual requirements, fees negotiable.