Course Start Dates
Course dates are flexible; please get in touch for the next available date.
This unique green woodworking stool making course is an opportunity to 'unplug & slow down' & take a step into the rural life of an old fashioned village carpenter. During this very 'hands on' experience you will learn many traditional carpentry skills & techniques using a selection of beautiful old hand tools.
You will walk away with a beautiful solid oak stool with a high quality finish (good enough to sell!) and made to last. Oak is used most of the time but sometimes there will be elm and ash timbers too.
The course fee is £85 per person for small groups of up to 4 people, so that everyone has plenty of time and space. If you would like to come one-on-one then the fee is £95.
The Rustic Carpentry workshop is an historic old tithe barn on a farm which is 5 mins drive from Loughborough train station (we can collect you from the station!)and right in the heart of The National Forest. We specialise in the ancient and traditional art of green wood working & rustic carpentry, coppicing and bush craft skills.
Ian Varley is a rustic oak furniture maker so most of his time is spent on commissions such as rustic benches and seating for parks and woodlands, play structures, cleft fencing and oak timber framing. Ian specialises in creating handcrafted unique pieces and use only timber sourced from sustainably managed woodlands within the boundaries of the national forest. Please click through to our website above to see examples of our work.
'I look forward to teaching you the way of the grain and you will leave my workshop with a fabulous rustic hard wood stool.'
What's included in the price?
All materials, tools and hot drinks & as many biscuits as you can eat.
What a great experience that turned out to be !.........enjoyed the whole day & feeling quite proud of myself for making a lovely stool.......looking forward to doing another one of Ian's courses....top bloke!!!
I have recently been on Ian's stool making course at his wonderful tithe barn workshop, just outside barrow upon Soar. From the offset it was a great experience. I was introduced to the concepts of greenwood working and the related tools and their use. He is a proper craftsman and takes the time and patience to explain the various stages of construction, using his wonderful array of high quality woodworking tools. I would thoroughly recommend Ian and his courses to anyone with an interest in this field. Plus you get to take home what you have made on the day!
My wife was scouring the internet looking for a unique 5 year wedding anniversary gift and found Ian's website... and im very glad she did.
My brother and I met Ian at his workshop on the Saturday morning, and the first job was to make a wooden mallet out of what seemed an old tree trunk! That was hard work in itself, learning how to effectively swing a hatchet. We then spent the day using various woodworking tools to make a rustic oak table using traditional methods. With a hour or so ledt over, we were also able to make a walking stick each.
My table now has pride of place in my living room, the walking stick is used frequently when we're off rambling.
Would I recommend this course? Without hesitation! Ian was a great laugh, full of patience and funny anecdotes as we crafted away... oh and tea. Plenty of tea!
I have met Ian a few times at different country shows and I always show an interest in what he is making. Wood working is an hobby of mine and to my surprise my wife and children had booked me on to one of Ian's courses. I had a wonderful time. I learnt new skills and how to use the old traditional hand tools. I have since bought myself some. I had such a wonderful day that I have booked to go again in a couple of weeks time. Ian is a very easy going and skilled person, I learnt a lot from him. I would recommend his courses to all.
Such a good experience. Ian is knowledgeable, patient and fun. The time he spent showing us how to make our stools was impressive. He really felt for the wood and our hands working it and managed to pass on that empathy.
The finished article is saleable yes, but its going to stay with me to remind me of an ace day. Thanks Ian!
This was a lovely surprise gift from family. The experience was very enjoyable and engaging creating this beautiful oak stool using traditional methods by hand. Ian was a relaxed, friendly and helpful teacher with good hints and tips on using the tools. It was a great experience to receive and I would certainly recommend this experience to all.
I attended one of Ian's workshops a couple of weeks ago with my daughter as a friend recommended him to me.
I was slightly apprehensive as I've no knowledge or skills in traditional wood working and didn't no what to expect.
On our arrival we were both greeted by Ian who was a softly spoken very welcoming gentleman, he explained what he did for a living and talked about traditional wood working skills.
Whilst there my daughter and myself made stools under the watchful eye and guidance of Ian, the whole experience was amazing for both of us and Ian amazing workshop just added to the feel of such a creative process.
I would strongly recommend this to anyone, great day awesome Guy.
We will definitely be back soon.
Ian was excellent throughout the workshop and showed patience, understanding and a great attitude to my 10yr old daughter. He encouraged her with how to use the tools correctly without being over-bearing and was patient with her when she complained about it being hard work!
Ruby came away with a great stall she made with Ian and has been very proud to show and tell every visitor to the garden about how she made it from just "lumps of wood".
I'd recommend Ian and his workshops to anyone who wants to learn rustic and traditional carpentry skills using traditional methods and tools.
Ian's workshop was absolutely brilliant - I bought it as a gift and couldn't have been happier with how well it went down! My husband learnt so many new skills and crafted his own stool which is now a favourite piece of furniture in our home. Ian was so incredibly friendly and helpful, he really does offer a warm and inviting experience which you won't forget. I'd highly recommend his workshops!