Box Making Weekend in Cumbria
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About the Course
2 day box making courses held on weekends throughout the year in beautiful Cumbria. Make your own handmade wooden box.
The courses are fun and relaxed, yet will give you the skills & confidence to make stunning boxes on your own. The courses are run from a fully equipped cabinet making work shop. All tools and safety equipment are provided, though you are welcome to bring your own tools if you wish. Ear defenders and dust masks are yours to keep at the end of 2 days. Tea and coffee is on tap :-)
You will get to make a box from a selection of hardwoods, with either a lift off top or a hinged top with solid brass hinges if desired, Your choice. The completed box can be lined with a selection of materials from leather to felt and will be finished with oil and wax.
There will be a maximum of 4 people per course with 2 tutors available, meaning a maximum ratio of 2 students to 1 tutor, giving you the most of our time. The box you make will be of a fairly simple design with either mitred or dovetailed joints. All brass ware and materials are provided in the cost. Time permitting you could also do some inlay work on your box. As well as the practical side we will also give you lots of tips and answer all your questions as we go. I have designed the boxes to be doable in the 2 days, in the event you don't quite finish, all the wood work side of things should be done, just leaving the finishing to be done at home, for which I can provide you with some finishing oil and wax. I will have demonstrated how to do this during the weekend.
Please see the link above for more details. I am happy to answer any questions over the phone or by email.
Keen woodworkers may also be interested in the 5 day cabinet making courses courses run by our partners in The Wood Workshop. I also teach in the courses. Please put 'woodwork' into the search box above to find further details of these. www.craftcourses.com/courses/five-day-woodwork-course-tools
If booking with a CraftCourses voucher for part or all of the course fee, please fill in the contact form above or telephone us. Your voucher code must be provided at the point of booking.
What's included in the price?
The courses cost £275 per person inc all materials and as much tea and coffee as you can drink.
All tools and safety equipment will be provided ( ear defenders and dust masks are yours to keep) and a fully equipped workshop. You are welcome to bring your own tools if you have them, we will show you how to use/set them up properly if you wish. Tea, coffee and biscuits are provided. Unfortunately being weekends our usual sandwich van will not be around, so you will have to bring your own lunch. A microwave is also available to use. There is a little chef and burger king within walking distance of the workshop as well as a garage 2 min drive away which sells sandwiches, pies and rolls.
Great course and I came away having learned so much. Made a lovely dovetailed box with a feature Australian silky oak lid, which was brass pin pivoted and the inside was leather lined.. all over a weekend. With 2 students to one instructor (Mark) there was never any problem in asking for advice or questions. Worth every penny!
Mal Weightman - - #11855
Excellent course and Mark a very patient teacher and balanced the right amount of teaching and demonstration with allowing me to get on with my box and quietly supervising. End result a beautiful box, far nicer than anything else I have ever made and a shed load of new skills. What my wife didnt bank on when she booked the course were all the essential items of workshop equipment I will now need to buy to kit out my own workshop 😁
Steve Lumb - - #11221
The weekend box making is real joy. No matter how much woodworking background one has, there is a lot to learn from Mark who is a very creative craftsman. I am glad i came for this course it was well worth it.
Thank you Mark. You have certainly made me a more confident woodworking hobbiest.
Hussain - - #10493
So many firsts for me this weekend, including the first time I have written a report on-line! I had to!!!
What a fantastic course. The family were amazed at the box I created - if I can anyone can.
Mark is an excellent teacher. There were two of us on the course and the other person had far more experience than I, even having his own work shop. I would definitely class myself as a beginner but I was not made to feel inferior in any way.
On arrival we were asked what type of box we wished to construct - 2 different shapes, mitre or dovetail corners and 3 different lid mechanisms. We chose completely different styles of box and Mark showed us the both the techniques required, calling the other over when demonstrating the next step.
I have never used machinery before - Mark was very clear in his instruction and I felt very safe as a result of his attention to detail. Each piece of equipment (hand or machinery) was explained as in what it does and how it is used. He also taught us some maintenance tips for hand tools e.g. sharpening chisels. Mark has provided details of suppliers (materials and tools) should we wish to have a go at home.
We were made very welcome. There was the opportunity to have a drink whenever you wanted but I became so engrossed I forgot - until we were told it was lunch time!
Thank you so very much for a fabulous weekend. I have a beautiful box - they don't keep the best wood for themselves. I will definitely be back when I can.
Sallie - - #10491
Excellent course. Mark was outstanding in showing us everything and we were never kept idle. This was my first time wood working and everything was made exceptionally clear and simple. The materials and tools were also second to none and all thoroughly detailed and explained.
I can not recommend this course enough!
Craig S - - #10134
I have just completed the weekend box making course and would highly recommend it . The help and tuition from Mark was exceptionally good . I am proud of the boxes I made and the skills I learned .
It is one of the best things I have done .
Tom Wilson - - #9815
This was the first woodworking i had ever done, never really used tools, or even knew the names of some tools.
Mark was an excellent teacher, i learnt so much over the two days, he was also very patient and answered every question i had, no matter how stupid the question was! I used a variety of hand tools and power tools, and had a lovely box by the end of the weekend.
I found this course as a great introduction to working with wood and would absolutely recommend this course to anyone who asks, and would definitely take any future courses that Mark puts on.
Paul Tait - - #8940
A very good course. I had no real previous wood working skills but even so managed to produce a very satisfactory box in the two days. Mark is a good tutor and along the way I picked up a lot of useful information from him on using tools and materials. Recommended.
Ian Cairns - - #8590
I have recently returned from this box-making course in Penrith and it was excellent. Mark teaches in a very relaxed and encouraging manner which enabled me to dust off some old woodworking skills and learn some new ones. I now have a beautiful lined flip top box made of oak and ash. I would fully recommend this course!
Liz - - #8271
Mark is a true craftsman. You will learn a lot on this short course. I loved it.
Sam Kellet - - #8005
Previously attended furniture course in the same workshop. It has been revamped and the new layout lends itself to the function with more room in the central area.
Mark was well prepared for the course; more than ready for the students and our questions about the project. His teaching style is quietly confident; courses without the dramatic effect are so much more enjoyable by all parties, Able to share knowledge in a workshop environment, underpinned by his experience; nothing phased him. His belief all of the potential problems can be resolved; basically reinforcing the belief that Tradesmen get things done rather than admitting defeat.
Two days well spent in a frosty Penrith; coming home with a sense of achievement and a beautiful lined Jewellery box as evidence to all of those doubting the potential for such a short course.
Thanks again Mark, it was like coming home to a welcoming, stress-free family atmosphere.
I might come on another Course, and will definitely pop in next time I am in the area.
Colin - - #6858
Having already covered a fair amount in fine furniture woodworking on my college course I went on the box making course and really enjoyed it. I learnt various new techniques on machines and by hand including decorative dovetails, cutting hinges, finishing and lining boxes. Mark and Richard were both brilliant tutors and passed on their skills and knowledge of woodwork with great enthusiasm. The ratio was fantastic with 2 tutors to 3 students. I was delighted with the end result. I would highly recommend this course and would like to do another.
Joe Warbrick - - #5880
What a fantastic course! I arrived as a novice with a limited idea of how to do much with wood. The challenge of making a box over a weekend seemed a little daunting, especially when offered the choice of what sort of box to make while looking at a range of Mark's work.
Mark is an excellent teacher, and quickly helped me gain confidence as I learnt a whole range of new skills. His experience both as a craftsman and teacher shine through with great tips and support all given in a really relaxed style.
The course is held in Mark's very well equipped workshop which is in a beautiful setting just a few minutes walk from the Rheged centre.
By the end of the course I was amazed at how much we had covered and even more amazed at the box I had made.
Matt - - #5065
I really enjoyed this course. Mark was friendly and helpful and guided us in making the boxes rather than being overly prescriptive. At the start of the course you are shown samples of the boxes that Mark sells and you can choose the one you want to make (or design your own using elements from a number of styles if you prefer). You are then instructed in how to safely use the various tools/ machines needed to make the box and given the space to learn the required techniques at your own pace (in my case that meant making a lot of mistakes and wasting a lot of wood). I was also impressed with the quality of timber we were given to use, I expected to be using standard timbers but we given beautiful pieces of furniture grade oak to work with. All in I had a fantastic weekend.
Steve - - #4624
I admired Mark's boxes when attending the Cabinet Making courses in Penrith and made the decision to build on my woodworking skills by attending the Box Making course.
Just returned from a most enjoyable Box-Making weekend in a snowy Cumbria; it was a welcome sight to see the smoke of the wood-burner drifting skyward as I pulled into the car park. Mark provided the tuition in his quietly confident manner. Each stage was described in detail, and any hiccoughs managed without any fuss or panic. (on Mark's part anyway) Patience personified!
Mark was supportive through the entire process from choosing wood; preparing the wood; selecting a design and onward to the conclusion of building a high quality box with light oak sides and brown burr oak back and front; with a burr oak top to die for.
He even managed to help me with my ongoing projects once the box was complete; sharing his knowledge freely; at least two will be finished by the Christmas deadline. The short duration of the course belies the usefulness of the transferable skills taught in this forum.
Thanks again Mark, for your encouragement to be more adventurous in my projects.
I fully intend to return to further my skills next year and look forward to being reacquainted with my Cumbrian support network.
colin - - #3844
I have just completed the weekend box making course and was impressed not only by Mark's own boxes but his depth of knowledge and how he explained everything in detail as we proceeded - and I ended up with a beautiful Cumbrian Elm box which has been much admired. The detailed explanations, hints, tips, sharpening, info on workshop practice all added to my knowledge. Above all, Mark has very high standards and this rubbed off throughout the course.
Derek Reay - - #3635
I greatly enjoyed this course. Mark explains the steps, techniques and tools used to take selected timber and produce a professional-looking box. The workshop has a good range of woods available and Mark takes you through each stage of making a box and the variations you can have.
I would recommend this course to anyone who has an interest in trying their hand at box making or craft woodwork in general. Starting as a box-making novice, I was pleasantly surprised at the quality of the result I achieved with Mark's tuition.
Mike - - #3342
Just completed the box making course with Mark - June 2015. I'm an amateur woodworker with limited experience but with Marks expert tuition and guidance I managed to make a beautiful, high quality box that I can be very proud of. An excellent opportunity to learn new skills and improve knowledge. Relaxed approach in a well equipped workshop in beautiful Lakeland setting. I can thoroughly recommend the course.
Wayne - - #2873
I've just completed the box making course and absolutely loved it! its great to see your very own piece come together from a 'lump' of wood to a beautiful box. Mark was a very good teacher - very patient with me! I'd love to go back and do more of the courses run at the wood workshop.
Jay - - #2342
I had previously been on a cabinet making course that Mark teaches with Richard at the Wood workshop, While there I admired Mark's boxes on display in the showroom with much envy. Talking to him about his boxes, he told me about the courses he was setting up and I jumped at the chance to be on the inaugural course.
I already knew the standard of tuition which not surprisingly was maintained on the weekend course. Good fun, relaxed but at the same time fairly intense. The result.....a fantastic box, the standard of which I was amazed at, especially in 2 days! Admittedly with lots of guidance :-)
Thanks for a great weekend. will be back for more courses in the future.
Mark - - #1953
Having been with Richard and Mark on the 5 day tools and things course I wanted to try my hand at "box making" on the brand new weekend course. What a great weekend we had lots of fun, a great deal of informative was gathered and I went home with a lovely box to show/give to my wife.
Gorden - - #1925
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Course Start DatesSaturday 13th January 2018
Saturday 17th February 2018
Saturday 24th March 2018
Saturday 28th April 2018
Saturday 12th May 2018
Saturday 14th July 2018
Saturday 18th August 2018
Saturday 15th September 2018
Saturday 27th October 2018
Saturday 8th December 2018
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