Thursday, 21 May 2015

Cribbage game anybody?

16-pointed rosette design with swirl rosette center chip carved in 11'' basswood cribbage board.
The piece is finished with light brown gel stain.

Before I post few pictures of the design creation and work in progress, here are two candle holders I carved the same week. The first is 8'' with foliage design and the second is 6'' with wide diamond border.

The design sketched on the cribbage board:

I originally wanted to leave the center as it is in the following picture, but once this was carved I decided to add additional pattern:

Gel stain application, the last step of the finish:

Full view of the cribbage board:


  1. Hi Ales.
    We met briefly at the PEI carving show. For some reason it did not register you were the same person I met at the farmers market. I just wanted to say how much I like you chip carvings. I will have to attempt one some day in the near future.
    The photos of your gallery showing look awesome and it appears to have been a great success... well done.
    Although caricature carving is my passion I do like to carve cottonwood. Its a leisure wood... :)

    Take care, keep carving.. and keep safe.
    Glenn Landry (Nova Scotia)

    1. Hello Glenn,
      Thank You for the praise. I thought we talked somewhere before but I guessed it was at previous carvings shows, I meet quite a few people around market so I have it mixed up. I should remember now :)

  2. Aloha, found this while searching for a thin wood chip board supplier. It's absolutely amazing!!
    My sister and I pass many summer afternoons playing cribbage, I could see us all dressed up, tea party, cribbage playing with this.
    Again, beautiful
    Sincerely Chandra Zink
    PS I AM looking for a supplier for that thin super hard/sturdy board material made of wood with the
    smooth finish usually both side, to have printing done on. like say, I've seen Christmas ornaments made with it. Ring a bell. You probably know. Do you have any suggestions as to where I should look. When I search I just keep getting cardboard type chipboard search findings.
    Mahalo from Maui
    Chandra Zink

    1. Thanks for the praise. I am not sure at all what You mean by the material You ask about. The cribbage boards I carve are basswood pre-made from I get all of my material for carving there.

  3. Hi there! You're work is amazing!! Do you seal your basswood before staining? I'm starting a project within the next week or so and have been trying to find pointers. I'm engraving with a dremal tool on thin basswood. roughly 1/8". I'm worried when I stain it will bleed.. I want the engraving to be darker then the rest of the wood. Do you have any tips or pointers? Also what brand of gel stain do you use? Thanks in advance!

    1. Hello Carlee,

      Thanks for the praise. I used to use regular polyurethane in spray (satin) but I switched to Danish oil last year, they both work great for me but I find the Danish oil applies more evenly. On the bad side it takes a bit longer to fully dry. In both cases I would apply 3 layers, usually the second coat can be done the very next day and the third coat 3-4 days after. Then I would wait at least 4 days before using the gel stain.

      I use Old Masters brand of gel stains. Mostly dark mahogany and early American. You can probably try some other brands if You don't find that one. You need just a very small container. For wiping the excess off use some lint free cloth.

      You can find a really good video on Youtube that shows a slightly different approach with different finishes, search up 'chip carving showing true colors'.

      If You have any other questions feel free to send me a direct email, my address is in the 'contact me' section on my blog.