The Chronicles of Wise Owl Joinery
Being a miscellany of press coverage, special visitors to our shop, interesting articles and other tidbits
Garden columnist Jodi DeLong wrote about our pergolas and pavilions for the Chronicle Herald. Here's the link to Jodi's article.
Richard made some knife blocks decorated with traditional chip carving to give as gifts. Click here to see more of Richard's chip carving.
The official opening of Port Williams Community Park took place under the beautiful new park pavilion built by Wise Owl Joinery. Two young mothers got the ball rolling for the park in 2008 and carried it through with huge support from the community, government and other donors. Read the story of the park ...
November 27, 2008
Liz Rigney of ATV News interviewed us at our shop. Here's her video, thanks to Live at 5:
November 13, 2008
We hosted a Grade 10 class from West Kings District High School - the second year in a row that a class from West Kings has come to learn about career options in woodworking. Some comments from the students:
“I really enjoyed this trip because Richard had a lot of quality things to say and show us. He is running a very good business, does quality work and kept us entertained throughout the day. Thanks!” said Tyler Titus.
“I never knew you could do that much cool stuff with wood” said Trevor Hutt.
West Kings District High School Grade 10 class field trip to Wise Owl Joinery's shop.
Ads in the Chronicle Herald and the Kentville Advertiser for Foxhill Cheese House, Wise Owl Joinery, and Sasco Products Ltd. - "Where timber craft meets cheese craft!"
We received a nice mention in a Christmas letter by do-it-yourself timber framer (owner-builder) James Urbanowski, explaining how Richard helped with the Urbanowskis' ambitious and magnificent project. It reads, in part:
Spring came late in New Brunswick, and Jim was chomping at the bit to start house construction. We finished clearing, and installed the well, septic and foundation by the end of June, just in time for the framing crew to start. This is where things became difficult. We were building a post and beam timber frame structure, which was to be substantially cut and erected during a one-week timber framing workshop in July. As it turned out, less than half of the anticipated crew showed up for the workshop, resulting in only 1/4 of the frame being cut. In retrospect, I should have planned things better, but at this point, I must acknowledge the great effort that everyone DID put into trying to make that week a success. Thanks guys. We just did not have enough people.
After some quick calls, salvation came in the form of one Richard Cormier, a framer extraordinaire from Nova Scotia, who took up residency at our house site in Gagetown. Richard, Jim, Roger, Kenneth, Barry, Ian and others spent the next 3 months completing the frame. The framing process was slow, but resulted in an extraordinary structure. Thank you, Richard. Roger calls it "the church". The reminder of October and November saw the crew completing the roof and walls, with final close-in by mid-December. Boys, are we tired!
Richard led a pre-conference workshop at Burlington, Vermont for the Timber Framers Guild.
Richard wrote an article for Chipping Away (read it here) newsletter explaining the application of chip carving in log building and timber framing..
1996: The Real Meaning of the Word "Journeyman"
The tradition of young journeying craftsmen dates back 800 years in Germany. After completing an apprenticeship, young craftsmen (Wandergesellen) would take to the road for 3 years and a day, working wherever they could find work, for a variety of employers. During that time, they could not come within 33 miles of their homes. At the end of that period, they were allowed to become self-employed master craftsman (Meister), and at last teach their craft to new apprentices.
Most young Germans learning a trade nowadays no longer wander during their journeyman years. However, the old tradition has a few adherants who wear the traditional uniform with a shirt and buttoned vest, a broad-brimmed hat to protect from sun and rain, and a crooked staff, the trademark of the wandering craftsman. They walk or hitch-hike, as the tradition forbids paying for transportation. On their return home, with a book full of references, they are sure to find eager employers if they are not wanting to set up shop for themselves.
A travelling timber framer is a "Zimmerman".
[This German vocational education system has long been the backbone of the country's high technical standards in manufacturing and trades.]
From an article that inspired Richard Cormier in his wanderings before he returned to Nova Scotia and set up Wise Owl Joinery.