Year: 2021

Wood Carving Techniques has 146 articles, posts, pages, and projects dedicated to wood carving.

Basic Wood Carving Techniques – 69
Beginners Relief Carving Projects – 26
Relief Carving Projects – 26
Chip Carving – 21
Spoon Carving – 14
Scroll Saw – 14



Wood Carving BasicsWalking SticksChip Carving         Mule Deer Relief
      American HeroesChip Carving Patternsaltered art wood carving             Altered Artbent round gougeSpoon Carving
scroll saw cutting a wood carving spoon blank     Scroll Sawwood caving the wooden spoonBasic Tool Kit            Cane CarvingCane and walking stick wood carving
Wizard Wands
free wood carving cane instructions by Lora Irish          Snake CaneTriangle Chips in Chip Carving    Chip Carving Motifs            Fish Decoys          Finishing Steps
Relief wood carving by Lora Irish   High Relief ShadowsCeltic Dragon Wood Carving by Lora Irish          Celtic Dragon       Birch Bark Carving          Tiki Chess Set
         Canada GooseAltered Art Wood Carving

Stop Cuts


L S Irish Mission Statement

My husband, Michael, and I began our studio on the web in 1997 – 24 years ago.  Our first website was FineArtDog, followed within a few months with  Over these two decades so much has changed, expanded, and even exploded over the internet.  So I thought today was a good day to review and reconfirm my Mission Statement for all of my websites  and to you, my readers.

This free pattern is a sample of my
commitment to my Mission Statement.
These are two decorative Wedding Spoon free
patterns that can be worked in basswood, a soft wood that is readily available at your local craft store, and carved with a basic, general set of carving tools.

Nothing extra special is needed to make these
spoons nor is the wood we will be using so hard that you simply give up …


Who am I?

  1.  My name is Lora S Irish and 24 years ago I never thought that where I am today is where life and you would take me.  I started out, just like everyone else, as a kitchen table crafter. It is your friendships and interests that have guided my life.
  2. My formal training is as a fine artist, focusing on oil painting, which I received from the University of Maryland. I fulfilled my fine art training through Limited Edition Art Prints.
  3. My craft and hobby background foundation comes from my parents who truly believed ‘why buy it when its more fun to make it!’
  4. I have tried just about every craft, especially what were called the Women’s Arts, that  there is.  My favorites, those crafts that I constantly return to, are wood carving, and wood burning.
  5. My vocation is that of a published author, website owner, craft pattern creator, and experienced craftswoman.
  6. My avocation is that of a teacher. defines advocator as ‘ One that argues for a cause; a supporter or defender: an advocate of civil rights.’
  7. My cause, my focus, my goals … Teaching the newest beginner how to get started in our crafts. As a long time teacher I still believe that the most important person in the seminar room is the newest newbie and getting them off on a strong foundation of knowledge while helping them find success is the greatest task I have.
  8.  I am reconfirming my believe that by teaching the very basics to our crafts, I can help our crafts and hobbies to expand, spread, and grow.
  9. By teaching and focusing on an in-depth look at the basic skills will give you a foundation from which you can build a lifetime of joy in your arts.

Who is my student?

  1. By focusing on the newest of hobbyists.  My student is the person that has no idea what the difference is between a round gouge, scoop, sweep, or fishtail. They are the ones that have no idea what 5/4 wood is, how to identify end grain, or what a push v. pull or paring stroke means.
  2. My student is the one that doesn’t yet know that nib and pen tip mean the same thing or that a sepia scale is simply a black to white scale done in brown.
  3. My student is the one that writes me saying, “I haven’t done any hobbies since high school, so how do I start?”
  4. And my student is the one who emails, “Where do I buy wood?” or “How do I get the pattern onto the wood?”

How do I achieve my self-chosen purpose?

  1. I will remain focused on the basic techniques that a beginner needs to learn to grow in their hobby.
  2. I will shared these techniques through my blog postings, FaceBook postings, and forum postings, trying to make the basics fully free and accessible to everyone who is interested.
  3. I will continue to recommend wood burning units and tool sets that can get a beginner started without breaking the bank.  And I will recommend tools and burning units that are usable over the wide variety of art styles these hobbies offer.
  4. I will continue to give away free patterns, and free instructions that will get a beginner started.
  5. I will leave the teaching of intermediate, advanced, and expert knowledge and technique to those that are far more capable than I.
  6. And I will tailor my projects so that the newest crafter will not be overwhelmed by all the areas of information they will one day acquire.    Focusing on making each and every project one that a new craftsman with limited tools can create and earn the joyous calls of their family and friends of, “You Made That?!?”

Things I will not do!

  1. I will not recommend tools that are either specific to one style of craft and can not be used anywhere else in our hobby.  I won’t recommend a curved hook knife that is specific to spoon and bowl carving when a basic round chisel will do nicely to get you going.
  2. I will not insist that you learn to sharpen your carving knife before you have made you very first cutting stroke. Nor will I demand that you fully understand when to chose varnish, polyurethane or BLO finished before you finish your first carving.
  3. And finally, I will not recommend the hardest of woods, no matter what the style of carving, when a soft wood will get you going to learn the basics to your tools, to your cutting strokes, and to your new craft.

Mission Statement 2021 – Get a knife in one of your hands and the wood in the other, let you see how to make the basic cuts and strokes, and I will do that with my personal goal of helping you have quick, well earned success in your new hobby.

Thank you for reading ~ Lora S Irish


Seminars – Chip Carving, Pyrography, Spoon Carving.

Current, free online seminars for Chip Carving, Pyrography, and Spoon Carving.

Please remember to bookmark your opening page to the seminar, and please share the links.

Chip CarvingChip Carving Workshop

Free Chip Carving Wood Carving Pattern
Free Chip Carving Projects by L S Irish
Back to the Basics of Wood Carving
Chip Carving Common Mistakes
Chip Carving – Sampler Layout Pattern
Chip Carved Chess and Game Board
Chip Carving – Straight-Wall, Curve-Wall, Free Form
Chip Carving – Cutting Triangle and Square Chips
Chip Carving Hand Positions and Grips
Chip Carving Graphed Patterns
Chip Carving Supplies
Chip Carving Seminar
Free Chip Carving Pattern
Sharpening Your Chip Knives
Positive and Negative Space in Chip Carving
Chip Carving Shortbread Cookies
Sharpening Your Chip Knives

PyrographyLandscape Pyrography

1 Definition of Pyrography
2 Safety
3 Basic Tool Kit
4 Wood Burning Systems
5 One-Temperature
6 Rheostat Tools
7 Variable Temperature Tools
8 Wood Burning Pen
9 Hand Grip Positions
10 Loop Tip Pen
11 Ball Tip Pen
12 Spear Shader
13 Spoon Shader Pen
14 Practice Board
15 Wood Burning Media
16 General Kit Supplies
17 Cleaning Your Tips0
18 Grain Direction
19 Sanding the Wood Blank
20 Transferring the Pattern
21 Graphite on an Irregular Shape

22 Pencil Graphite Rubbing
23 Pattern Re-Alignment Marks
24 Tonal Values-
27 Finishing
25 Patina
27 Working a Sepia Value Pattern
28 Rooster Celtic Knot Project

Spoon CarvingArt of Spoon Carving

Four Methods to Cutting a Wooden Spoon Blank
Spoon, Fork, and Ladle Styles for Wood Carving
The Art of Spoon Carving by Lora S. Irish
Wood Carving a Basic Wooden Spoon
Styles of Wood Carved Spoons
Welsh Love Spoons
Welsh Love Spoons Introduction
Basic Cutting Techniques
Carving A Chain and Ball
Ball and Cage Carving is an Amazon Affiliate

Free Online Chip Carving Seminar

Let’s start this summer of fun with an in-depth look at chip carving with free chip carving patterns, step-by-step instructions, and lots of photos.  Hours of fun, carving, and learning!

Chip Carving
Free Chip Carving Wood Carving Pattern
Free Chip Carving Projects by L S Irish
Back to the Basics of Wood Carving
Chip Carving Common Mistakes
Chip Carving – Sampler Layout Pattern
Chip Carved Chess and Game Board
Chip Carving – Straight-Wall, Curve-Wall, Free Form
Chip Carving – Cutting Triangle and Square Chips
Chip Carving Hand Positions and Grips
Chip Carving Graphed Patterns
Chip Carving Supplies
Chip Carving Seminar
Free Chip Carving Pattern
Sharpening Your Chip Knives
Positive and Negative Space in Chip Carving
Chip Carving Shortbread Cookies
Sharpening Your Chip Knives



Lora S Irish Books & Publications


Classic Carving Patterns – Our original wood carving, wood burning, and pattern website.
Art Designs Studio – Original, exclusive, and new patterns and line art by Lora S. Irish
LSIrish.comDesigns Online Since 1997! Free 0nline projects, tutorials, & step-by-steps

Trained as a Fine Artist at the University of Maryland, twelve of Lora Susan Irish’s pure breed dog oil paintings have been published as limited edition art prints. Her art has been featured on the front covers of “Doberman Quarterly” 1991, “Samoyed Quarterly” – all four issues of 1991, and “Shetland Sheepdog Quarterly” 1991 published by Hoflin Press.

She is the author of a series of woodcarving, pyrography, and craft pattern books.  Currently Lora has 32 publications in print.

Her first in-depth wood carving book is Classic Carving Patterns, published by Taunton Press, in 1999, publisher of “Fine Wood Working Magazine”.  Other popular craft and hobby titles including the Great Book of Dragon Patterns, Relief Carving Workshop, and The Art and Crafts of Pyrography,  and Classic Chip Carving published by Chipping Away, Inc.  All of Lora’s books are available at, the best price anywhere on the web.

L. S. Irish shared the Woodcarver of the Year – 2007 with Ed Gallenstein, editor and publisher of “Chip Chats Magazine”, for her support and teaching efforts in the wood carving community. Irish’s free online tutorials can be found here on her blog,,  full of in depth step by step, how to free lessons on wood carving, woodburning, pyrography, and other great crafts.

Lora and her husband, Michael, took their home based art studio, Art Designs Studio established in 1984, to the Internet by creating in 1997 and continue to hold the copyright on this domain and all of the Works which it contains.  All images carrying the copyright of remain the sole property of Lora S. Irish.

Lora’s arts and crafts teachings can be found on her two websites. has hundreds of pages of Free Online Tutorials and Projects., her  line art patterns and drawings site, features line art designs created exclusively by Lora for craters and artisans.  Lora S. Irish owns the copyright on all material related to these three websites., as of 2013, offers more than 2500 pattern in various subject categories, including North American Wildlife,  Celtic Knots,  Dragons and Mythological Beasts, Nautical and Sea Life, and So Much More! Lora continues to provide new patterns and new inspiration to many artists.

Working from her rural mid-Maryland home studio, Lora S. Irish is currently exploring new crafts and hobbies including wire bent link jewelry, metal sheet jewelry, piece patch and applique quilting, gourd carving, gourd pyrography, and leather crafts.

Books & Publications by Lora S. Irish

To name just a few favorites …

Wood Spirits & Green Men  
Wildlife  Carving in Relief
Chip Carving Workshop
Essentials Rib Basket Weaving
Wire-Wrapped Jewelry Techniques
Relief Carving Wood Spirits
Finishing Techniques for Wood Crafters
Crafting with Gourds
Landscape Pyrography Techniques & Projects
The Art of Spoon Carving
Cane Topper Wood Carving
Little Book of Pyrography

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