The joke in the woodworking community, attributed to woodturner Gary Kelly, runs like this: you can always recognize a true lignophile or wood-lover. It's a person who, on the way into a prestigious gallery, will stop to look at the burl on the tree outside. They may prefer to stay outside wondering how they could get that chunk of wood!
Local wood artisans are, on the whole, quiet, industrious people who labour in their workshops using the Coast's abundant timber resources. The public will have an opportunity to see their work this fall when woodworkers join the many activities of the Pender Harbour Fall Faire this Saturday, Oct. 1. Most of those who will show their work and talk with the public produce finely crafted pieces, says Dan Gillis of Roberts Creek. He is best known for his shoji screens and timber frame style staircases; at this show he will be bringing some ornamental jewellery boxes made from exotic hardwoods such as mesquite and black walnut.
He will also bring several end tables made from spalted alder. The term spalting refers to a natural process in the living tree that creates intricate markings in the end product. Much of the wood used by local woodworkers is B.C.-grown, with yellow and red cedar among the more popular varieties for gift items because of their lasting fragrance. Will Cummer of Gibsons uses cedar, maple and alder in his burl boxes, letter openers, pat spreaders and business card holders. Other woods include the rich coffee tones of walnut or the colourful hue of sumac wood. Cummer is noted for his furniture made of driftwood. The gnarly, wave-whipped pieces are incorporated into the framework of the bench or chair, while other local woods, such as maple, may appear in the seat or backrest.
The wood contingent will be showing at the elementary school gym in Madeira Park from 10 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. To find the gym door, follow the signs and balloons to the side of the school building on Lagoon and Gonzales.
Visitors will have to move quickly to see everything during the one day Pender Harbour Fall Faire. While the wood show is in progress, a craft fair featuring over 20 artisans takes place from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. in the community hall.
Jewellery designer Peggy Collins has organized a full house of crafted goods including sheepskin items, stone sculpture from Roland DeWilde, several varieties of jewellery including fused glass, silver and beadwork, handmade clothing from Louise Meints (also seen at the Langdale craft booths), cement faces for landscaping from Garden Bay newcomers Ann and Rick Harmer, hemp products, soaps, Serendipity Pottery, garden ornaments from Cindy Cantelon and handmade chocolates from Powell River. Also on show will be Els Mol's handpainted decorative work and a newcomer to the craft scene, Joan Disney, selling her handmade hats, jewellery, bags and notebooks made out of recycled leather. She will be coming by boat from her Nelson Island home. Food will be available, catered by Niki Verzuh of Coast Catering. Admission is free. The actual harvest exhibition is at the Legion Hall. Judging of the exhibits will be over by 11 a.m. and the public is invited to several other entertaining events: a line dancing demo and an African dancing demonstration around noon.
At 4 p.m., at the Music School, various sponsors will host a fundraising fashion show with tickets available at the door. Right beside the Music School, the Harbour Gallery will show their Area A artwork; all the artists are from the neighbourhood. A free hayride will help transport seniors and others between the various venues.