I have often made replica woodware from various periods of history for musesums throughout the country. My replicas are based on extensive research and produced using exactly the same techniques as the originals. This means the weight, feel of the toolmarked finish and slightly oval shape (caused by shrinkage during drying) are all exactly right.
Mary Rose replicas
All replicas of originals found on board the Tudor warship, this group includes lidded pots that were found in the Barber-Surgeon’s chest and a lanthorn. This has a turned top and base, and panels made from horn framed by thin slats of wood, one of which is hinged to allow lighting of the candle.
Ridley Scott film “Robin Hood”
Known for their attention to detail, Ridley Scott’s researchers read my book before commissioning a range of woodware suitable for the film’s Medieval setting. As well as a selection of different-sized bowls they ordered silver mounted mazers. All the woodware was sent to them unfinished so they could artificially ‘age’ it. Cate Blanchett as Maid Marion washed her feet in one of my big bowls.
These are not really “scales” as they don’t have a scale, but balances for comparing the weight of things. The earlier ones, like those found on the Mary Rose were hand held and the later ones shown here (made for the Weald & Downland museum) were free-standing.
Weald & Downland Museum
Many museums put on cookery demonstrations in traditional kitchens for educational purposes. This selection of woodware is used by the Weald & Downland Museum and there is a similar selection in the kitchens at Hampton Court palace.
Jorvik Viking Centre
Famed for taking visitors back in time to experience the sights and smells of Viking York, the museum commissioned a selection of replica woodware along with a bag of waste from the workshop floor to spread under their replica of a turners workshop.
These ones are based on archaeological drawings, but similar flasks are still made today in Eastern Europe. They are turned in two directions; firstly the feet, neck and where the straps attach are turned. Then they are remounted on the other axis so the back and front can be turned and the flask hollowed out inside.
Irish National Heritage Centre
These are replicas of traditional Irish vessels. The lamhogs (front) are turned; the reciprocating motion of the pole lathe allows the wood on either side of the handle to be turned, a time-consuming but pleasing process. The methers (rear) are entirely carved.