Spalted maple spoon from likely "Big Leaf" maple, a species native to the Northwest. The spoon, handcrafted by Michael Alexander, features spalting and figuring, common in older salvaged Big Leaf trees. The spalting on the bowl and handle are striking, making it an ideal serving spoon for the dining table.
The making of...Michael works with primarily local salvaged hardwoods. Common woods include maple (particularly “big leaf” maple which is native to the Northwest), madrone (another native northwest species), fruitwood (such as plum, apple, and cherry), and black walnut. Many pieces are also created with spalted wood. Spalting is a natural process that occurs towards the end of the tree’s life. The result is a remarkable shift in the coloration of the wood and often stark black "zone lines." Once rough cut, the wood is worked entirely by hand with a band saw. Bowls are carved with a gouge and hook knives, shaping is done with various kinds of rasps, scrapers, spokeshaves, and micro planes. Spoons go through an extensive sanding phase and are simply finished with walnut oil.
About Michael Alexander
Seattle-based Michael Alexander came to spoon carving after a career in technology. An empty nest opened up time for him to pursue creative endeavors alongside his technology career. After a weekend spoon carving class at Pratt Fine Arts Center, Alexander was hooked. Currently, he is one of the leaders of the vibrant Seattle Spoon Club community ensuring that all newcomers are welcomed with spoon blanks and quick tips. In recent years, he’s expanded his repertoire to include other kitchen items including rolling pins, cutting boards and more. Follow him at @woodenspoonfool for his latest creations.