Spoon Carving with Touchwood Glasgow

There's a unique spoon hidden inside every branch!


Introducing Touchwood Glasgow, a full day greenwood carving workshop inviting participants to learn the basic skills required to hand-carve small useful objects, with the focus on a traditional wooden spoon. This workshop is suitable for complete beginners or those with a limited experience of woodcarving.

I’ve been into working with wood for more than 30yrs, I studied Heritage Woodwork in 1995, though since then I’ve also studied Garden Design & Construction, Digital Photography (HND) and Fine Art (BAhons). My interest in wood as a creative medium has never left me however, and is something I’ve always nurtured to some lesser or greater extent. Subsequently, I’ve been carving 100s of spoons over a 5yr period, and feel it would be a creative beneficial (and addictive!) activity to inspire in others. Hence, I find myself in a position to offer anyone interested in the process the opportunity to come along and learn the basics skills and techniques of the craft.

Not only is it my belief that woodcarving is a highly creative and personally tactile way to study form, but it is indeed a very ancient art form in its own right. The practice inspires a generative connection to trees, and in turn connects the trees to us. Through woodcarving, we inevitably become more interested in trees and their extremely varied characteristics, thus we become more conscious of the natural ecosystem around us. Woodcarving, and the subsequent unavoidable study of wood, is one pathway towards a greater awareness of the nature and presence of trees.

As we find ourselves living in a world saturated in fast technology and consumption, woodcarving provides us with an opportunity to step back and take a breather. The whole process - beginning with sourcing and seeking out a natural sustainable material - is nature based, and affords us with a slowed-down appreciation for the make-it-yourself approach to owning everyday useful household objects. In my view, it is a small step towards a more environmentally conscious way of living, and therefore a kind of activism!

The workshop will run on Saturdays at Torrisdale Street Studios, 100 Torrisdale Street, Govanhill Glasgow G42, from 10am - 1pm (1hr lunch break) 2pm - 5pm.

A confirmation email will be sent to your email address within 24hrs of payment

Each available workshop date will provide space for four.
One-to-one workshops are also available on request.

PLEASE NOTE: This is a very hands-on workshop which involves the intensive use of EXTREMELY sharp tools. Interested parties should be clearly aware of this aspect of the workshop prior to their decision to book a space. A degree of proficiency and care is the responsibility of each participant, as is the respect for handling sharp instruments in close proximity to other workshop attendees.

Cancellation and a full refund can be obtained up to 2 weeks before the course starts. Start dates may be amended on request.

What's included in the price?

Beginning with a blank piece of locally & sustainably sourced tree, you will be guided through these 10 basic steps as follows:

• Selecting a suitable wood-blank for spoon carving - wood types and their qualities

• Introduction to the tools and how to use them safely - hewing axe, carving knife, hook-knife, draw-knife, and the shave-horse.

• Splitting/creating a spoon billet using an axe

• Axe-work - effective strategic waste wood removal

• Marking out and carving wood using a variety of specialist/traditional knife-hold techniques

• Finishing the spoon - final touches

• Preserving your wooden spoon

• Advice on tool maintenance & sharpening

• Advice on what tools to buy, and where to buy them

• Some tools may also be available for purchase on the day

Tea/coffee & snacks will be provided throughout the day.

Each participant will take away with them a unique hand carved spoon, but more importantly, you’ll take with you the basic knowledge to carve wood safely and creatively in your own time.

A post-workshop useful information and advice sheet (PDF) will be sent to each and every attendee to help guide and inspire carving continuity.


Robert at Touchwood Glasgow

Message the tutor More from this maker All reviews


100 Torrisdale Street
G42 8PH

Suitable for

  • Adults
  • Intermediate level
  • Seniors
  • Suitable for beginners


8 hours (10:00am to 6:00pm)

Gold Badge
What does this mean?

This craft course provider has been awarded Gold status for receiving 10 or more 5 star ratings from previous students.

The Students' Choice award ensures that course providers get recognised for their efforts in the teaching and practice of UK craft.

They also allow tutors to gain valuable feedback on their courses and for new students to find the course that's right for them.

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Sandra - - #38284

Robert's carving workshop I took last Saturday provided for an excellent day of relaxing craft! Definitely a space where you can have a laugh with a lovely and easy going tutor who is really passionate about wood carving, and provided you with the skills and tools to carve something personal, original! That really feels great! I can't recommend this workshop enough, it felt authentic and highly cathartic!

Michelle - - #38231

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Les Dean - - #38229

Robert is clearly passionate about wood carving and his enthusiasm rubbed off on ourselves. He was clear and concise in all safety and technical matters from start to finish and explained each process in sufficient detail that allowed us to create our own individual spoons. Happy to recommend Robert to those interested and perhaps those who might not think they are!

Lucy - - #38202

This was an excellent course and one I'd be happy to recommend. I had absolutely no experience of wood carving going in to the course but by the end of the day was the proud owner of a lovely spoon I'd made myself. Robert is a brilliant teacher with years of experience and clearly very knowledgeable about wood carving. He was able to provide hands on advice and support while also allowing lots of freedom to make my own creative choices. The group of people attending were also very supportive and this made for a lovely atmosphere. I was delighted with what I was helped to accomplish in just one day and hope to repeat the course again at some point to see what else I can come up with.

Alison - - #38135

I would highly recommend the course. There was enough space for individual creativity rather than making a set design, and as a teacher this takes experience to stand back rather than control the experience. Three of us started with three logs and ended up with spoons which couldn’t have been more different from one another and were all lovely. In this way the teaching was excellent, we weren’t shown what to do so much as shown how to make what we wanted to happen safely and get a good result. Our little group was great company too, between staring at pieces of wood we has some laughs too.
From time to time Robert quietly stepped in to progress the work when we got a bit overwhelmed, sore hands or puzzled as to how to do the next part. Expect a long day, lots of concentration, a few dips where it seems impossible, and then suddenly progress, in short a genuine experience of the challenges of working with wood.

Ewan - - #38036

This is a fantastic course which has been thoughtfully and meticulously put together by Robert. My partner and I spent a fantastic day learning all the steps in the process of carving a spoon. Robert had laid out a selection of his spoons as well as his tools to help us imagine our own designs and the process we were about to learn about before we then set off on our own creative endeavours!

Robert was an incredible teacher and explained every step of the process very clealry. His passion for wood carving was infectious and left me wanting to explore the subject in much greater detail. I will definitely be buying tools to begin exploring wood carving further and this is all thanks to having attended this brilliant workshop.

Katrina - - #38028

The workshop was very informative and lots of fun! The whole day was very well organised, with Robert providing demonstration and guidance at every step of the process. Robert is a great teacher who is clearly passionate about his craft. He was patient at guiding me until I could get the hang of things. A fantastic experience which I would highly recommend!

Lewis - - #37692

Robert was a great teacher and very knowledgeable about the wood carving process. I spent a lovely Saturday morning and afternoon and the lovely workshop and made a lovely large wooden spoon. Robert was very patient when helping me with my lack of ability with the hook knife! A wonderful experience.

Mathilde - - #37560

Robert's workshop was absolutely brilliant. The day passed so quickly. We started from scratch and axed a log of wood ourselves to carve our future spoons. We learned to used all the tools, which I loved. Robert found the right balance between teaching/giving advice and giving us space to solve problems, while always being available to help and step in when needed. He is also very passionate and knowledgeable about carving so I felt like I learn a lot. I enjoyed it so much I would actually do it again! And we all left with beautiful spoons and spatulas. I highly recommend it.

Mikey - - #37465

Great friendly atmosphere, clear instructions and lots of fun. Delighted to come away with a nice and functional object and some new skills.

Myrto - - #37395

A fantastic workshop to explore a new creative medium, wood carving.
Started from a branch and left with a spoon/spatula which I actually can't wait to use.
Robert is a chill and knowledgeable teacher that let's you safely experiment, advises techniques and keeps an eye on you so it's safe to try them ~ with respect to people's abilities and comfort level.

I had been looking forward to this workshop and was absolutley not disappointed.
Would highly recommend to try it out.

Francesca - - #37023

It was great to be guided with a perfect balance of demonstration and time for us participants to figure out every step from choosing our piece of wood to our final product ourselves, hands on! Robert created a very comfortable environment to allow our creativity to take its own course, he was always available to answer questions and taught us a mindful approach to the practice. Incredible experience!

layla - - #36998

Robert was approachable and knowledgeable throughout the day, but most importantly the care and passion he feels about his work, really comes across in his teaching. In answering all questions and showing us how to handle the tools and wood, Robert is positive and patient with curious carvers. The belief he has in students, helped to build confidence and keep our spoons (and fingers) in sight. Robert is very talented and generous in sharing his skills, hope to see more wood carving courses being led by him in the future. The follow-up materials are very helpful and the handmade bibs were so lovely too!

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