Student Work–Rex Mattern

Shortly after my wife and I were married, we had the good fortune to live next to an elderly couple who had been friends with my wife since her childhood. Mr. Ellis Beaver, at that time was in his late 80’s. He loved to buy antiques and refinish them. He also had a home furnished with many pieces of handmade period furniture built by local craftsmen. I would stand in awe of the skill needed to create these gems. In my early twenties, I could only dream that I would be able to duplicate these items…’someday.’

‘Someday’ arrived approximately 12 years ago when I started attending Lonnie Bird’s School of Fine Woodworking. What seemed only a dream in the late 70’s is now a reality. The real joy is not possessing the secretary desk as much as gaining the knowledge and appreciation of how the piece starts as a pile of rough lumber and progresses through all the steps of fine woodworking to a finished piece of timeless furniture. My projects from Lonnie’s school over the past twelve years will be passed on to my children because of the knowledge gained and skills I’ve learned at Lonnie’s school.  ~ Rex Mattern