Sawyer Creek turnings are created from repurposed wood; timber that has been downed by storms, tree trimming or land development. Most are species native to the Ozarks, with black walnut, oak, cedar, maple, cherry and osage orange the most common. The only imported wood used is Olive from the Holy Land, The groves in Israel are carefully maintained and the only wood available is from orchard pruning. Exotic wood species are never used, nor is wood harvested just for turnings. We take the issue of global deforestation and species decline seriously, and will not add to the problem.
Turnings are crafted on a lathe. The shape is dictated by the intended use of the item and the eye of the turner as it relates to wood grain and color. Bowls and urns may exhibit shapes reminiscent of Greek vases, Southwestern Native American pottery or Chinese porcelain. This is no accident. These forms are classics because they are practical, visually pleasing and aesthetically satisfying.
Our wood finishes come from a variety of naturally occurring oils, sealers and waxes. Items intended for display are finished with boiled/polymerized linseed oil and carnauba or beeswax. Carnauba wax is distilled from beetles, beeswax from bee combs, linseed oil from flaxseed, and shellac from excretions of the lac bug. Those that may come in contact with food are finished with mineral oil on the surfaces that contact the food. Mineral oil is safe enough that it is considered a foodstuff by the FDA. Hand rubbing and buffing these types of finishes produces a warm patina that accentuates the texture and color of the wood. If a gloss or a hard finish is desired, shellac is used. This avoids the plastic look of acrylic or other polymeric finishes as well as the environmental damage done by the volatile organic compounds (VOC) evaporating as these finishes cure. We only use products made from naturally occurring substances and produced without heavy metals.