Thursday, March 29, 2012

A Wedding Tree and Wooden Rings

In July of 2011 we received this lovely (and sad) email from a young couple in Texas.

Dear Nicola and David
My name is Kristin.  My husband Dan and I are admirers of your work.
 We feel in love and planned our future together during hikes in the northern Minnesotan woods.  As we were planning our wedding on my family's farm, we decided to commemorate our day by planting a tree (an Amur Chokecherry, Prunis maackii).

  Each year on our anniversary, we have returned to our tree to plant flowers at its feet and celebrate.  It has been such a beautiful metaphor for our lives.  As our love has continued to deepen and grow through our three years of marriage, our tree has blossomed and matured.  
We looked forward to the day when we could bring our future children to the very place where we pledged to love each other for the rest of our lives.  We also hoped to harvest a limb on our fifth or tenth anniversary and have wooden rings made.
There is always a danger in tying so much symbolism into a living thing.  Nature has been unkind to Northern Minnesota this year.  After a very hard winter, we have been overwhelmed with rain all summer.  Unfortunately, the water table has risen to a point where our beloved tree is now struggling to survive.  We are heartbroken.
I realize this may be impossible, but we wanted to ask if it may still be possible to have rings made from our tree.  Our tree is still quite small, with a diameter of 3" at the base and maybe 1.5" at the top.
We could harvest or temper the wood any way you need.  We would be forever grateful if you would consider making our rings.  This tree means so much to us.  
 Dan and Kristin 

David and I were honored and delighted to work with Dan and Kristin creating a special set of wooden rings from their chokecherry wedding tree.  The small size of their tree was not an issue fortunately.  In fact David has worked with much smaller branches and bits of wood that he has incorporated into a ring  when there was not enough material to craft the whole ring from the clients wood. After some months of conversations and decision making, harvesting and delivering their beloved piece of wood, drying and preparing the chokecherry; David created Kristin and Dan's rings this January. 

And we received this lovely email from Dan and Kristen once they had their rings in hand.
Nicola and David

I didn't believe it was possible -- they are even more beautiful in person.  David, you have a truly special gift.  The detail work is just breathtaking.  All of the love and energy you poured into these rings over the past weeks shines through.  Thank you so much for taking the extra effort to incorporate the wood from our beloved wedding tree.
We will cherish these rings for the rest of our lives.
Much love, Dan and Kristen

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

A wee wooden ring and Wandering in the Fells

David and I are humbled by the people we meet through our work.  Good people; people who are in love, thoughtful people who care deeply and who are actively making the world a better place.  
It just doesn't get any better than this ...
It never ceases to amaze us that from our remote homestead in the Cariboo Chilcotin of British Columbia we can come to know so many wonderful people from all over the planet.  
New friends who come into our lives solely because of their desire for a wooden ring. .  .

Enter Jonathan and Jessie. 
It was late September or early October of 2010 when we first began our friendship with this couple.  In November last year David began work on Jonathan's rosewood ring for his beloved.  They were married in the UK in early March 2011. 

After their celebrations Jonathan wrote: ". . .  Everything was a huge success and all is grand after a week of recovery. I can't thank-you enough for the lovely work on the ring. Jessie wept...really!  I hadn't let her see or try the ring before the ceremony so she was so moved by the entire event made all the better by your amazing ring. Thank-you again and again for being a very important part of our special day. I couldn't have hoped
for a better sequence of events from start to finish and your ring was and will remain a daily reminder of an amazing weekend in our lives.  Please stay in touch :):):) and continued success. 
Cheers,  Jonathan and Jessie


Ahh, the photographs... Jessie looking so classic and beautiful and Jonathan in his handsome kilted attire.  The two of them, the vehicles (which caught David’s eye) and the scenery; a joy to behold!  For myself who has not yet traveled abroad; these scenes are like stepping into an historical novel.  

"The outdoor ceremony was exactly what we wanted and so many people who attended said they loved the connection with the outdoors. You mentioned David has a love of old cars; so I think he will like this one.  This was our car for the Saturday. It's a 1939 French 2CV Cittron and the pic is from the village hall where we had the reception. The view is down the meadows towards the fells/hills. This area is awesome in that people have been living in these fells for over 8000 years with standing stones circles etc all over the place. It's not the Rockies, but it has it's own charm and the great thing is that every fell is "walk-able". We're out in the hills as often as time allows and we're never happier than when we're tramping across empty hill tops."

"Life is absolutely grand and Jess and I are settling nicely into a wonderful full time love affair. She adores her ring by the way and loads of interest in it. Hard to believe it's been almost a year since we started the process but here we are. I hope all is well in paradise. Life here is amazing and getting better all the time.
We have moved into a lovely 1690s cottage in a sweet little village where horses still clip clop past the door and the milk is delivered in cute little glass bottles...

Yes ...

Our days are filled with wonder ~ 
We are surrounded by the beauty of the natural world, thankful for today's technology which allows us to do what we do where we do it, and we are wrapped in the warmth of the good people who wear these little wooden bands called Touch Wood Rings. 

It is indeed a good life.  Thanks for visiting.

Friday, March 23, 2012

A man and his wooden ring . . .

We recently received this lovely email from Mitch (Thanks, Mitch!)
(March 2nd 2012) "I just wanted to say thank you so much for building/creating my ring. My wife, Dana ordered my ring last summer and it turned out awesome. You guys knocked it out of the park. I have told so many people around Atlanta Georgia and the southeastern United States about you guys.  It is beautiful. I have attached a picture of us at our wedding and again thank you so much. Mitch and Dana"

In May 2011 for their November wedding; Dana designed and commissioned a ring for her then fiance Mitch.  
Dana had explained that Mitch wanted a visible wood grain, and that Koa seemed to showcase that well. For the inlay she really like the maple because it offered the greatest contrast between light and dark. For the interior wood she chose Willow. "All of these woods" Dana wrote; "really describe my fiancĂ© perfectly! " 

Dana was such a pleasure to work and chat with...  Thanks so much Dana and Mitch!  We wish you both tremendous happiness; now and in the future.