I recently came across a video of a woodworking technique called Kolrosing. You cut slits into the wood, then rub fine dark powder into the slits. Traditionally you’d rub coal dust into the cuts, but people have used coffee grounds or other materials. You then use oil to seal the wood, trapping the dust in the cuts.
I started this spoon at a scout campout earlier this year with my son. I’d just gotten a spokeshave and thought I’d like to make a spoon where I did all the shaping just with the new tool. The spokeshave was probably a little large for making spoons and I couldn’t make a very tight concave curves with it. The result was a chunky spoon with just a suggestion of a handle.
I brought the spoon with me to another scout camp this fall. While my son was off earning merit badges I worked on finishing the spoon. I used a pocket knife and some carving knives to carve “2017 Many Point 906” into the handle. Many Point was the scout camp, 906 was the troop number.
I used ashes from the fire pit at camp to color the lines. It seemed fitting for a scout camp spoon.
I hadn’t brought any mineral oil or anything to finish the spoon with, but I did have a handy travel size tube of mint scented food-safe vitamin-e and beezwax. Mint chapstick. I had mint chapstick with me. So, I used that to finish the spoon and gave it to a scout leader who had worked hard to put the camp on for the boys.
The wood is apple wood, and it was one of my last couple of apple logs which I got 5ish years ago now. I think I have two more spoon sized pieces in the garage. At least they’re nice and dry.
I really liked the kolrosing technique. I’ve been interested in learning and trying out wood decorating techniques and kolrosing was an easy start. I think something with a looser grain than apple wood would’ve worked better. Or maybe a wood that wasn’t so dried out. It didn’t seem to split apart as well as the cuts in the videos I watched.
Also, I bet I do a better job next time!
Here’s the first video I saw about kolrosing. Also, I love the shirt in the video: Because a kid without a knife is a kid without a life. If you’d like to learn more about kolrosing, also check out this “Basics of Kolrosing” website.