The market is now filled with wonderful plastic pieces of furniture and other items. Many people choose them over wood products because of their perceived durability and beauty. I’m quite biased towards wood because I like it more than anything else. Let me share some of my thoughts on this.
Every piece of wood is beautiful. Every piece of wood is nature’s unique creation. No two pieces are very much alike. They differ in color, fiber, structure, etc.
Wood is durable. Compared to plastic and other materials, wood delivers more strength in proportion to its weight.
Wood is renewable. There sustainable timberlands which are managed to provide for cities’ need for wood. Wood in these areas are renewed through reforestation.
Wood products don’t harm the environment. Wood has low impact on the environment compared to aluminum, concrete, plastics, steel and vinyl. The production of these materials involve the use of non-renewable resources like petroleum and other carbon-intensive resources.
Wood is biodegradable and recyclable. Wood products decompose. Hence, they naturally return to the environment. Plastic, on the other hand, are made of materials which don’t decompose. These materials can stay in landfills for thousands of years unchanged.
Wood products are reusable. A wooden table, for example, can be chopped and made into smaller wooden products when it gets out of style. The same can be done with a wooden door, chest and other items. This may be done with plastic but the process it involves might damage the environment.
Wood is a natural insulator. Wood insulates against heat and cold inside the house or any infrastructure. This allows you to save energy. Statistics show that wood is 400 times more effective than steel and 1800 times more effective than aluminum in terms of insulation.
To a carpenter dad like me, nothing beats the happiness of creating wooden for my kids and seeing my kids enjoy them. Creating wooden toys allows to show how important my kids are to me – that I will take the effort and time to create something that they will enjoy. It also allows me to take part in their personal development and well-being as wooden toys come with better and more benefits than their plastic counterparts.
Wooden toys encourage kids to be proactive. Your kids will need to be mentally and physically involved when playing with wooden toys. Kids will need to pull, push and turn them manually because they don’t have buttons to press. Wooden toys are safer for kids’ heath. Wooden toys lack toxic chemicals which are often seen in plastic toys. You don’t have to worry about your kids getting poisoned when playing with them. Wooden toys are not battery-operated too. Again, you don’t have about your kids swallowing hazardous batteries.
Wooden toys improve kids’ tactile experiences. Plastic toys are generally smooth. Meanwhile, wooden toys can exhibit different textures. Touching them allows kids to have a rich tactile experience.
Wooden toys can be used for generations. Wooden toys tend to last generations. Plastic toys can get brittle and outdated in time. This is contrary to the state of most wooden toys no matter how vintage-looking they are. They have longer lifespan especially when they’re made from quality wood. Repairs can be easily done with broken wooden toys than with plastic toys. You can repaint or them if you need to. This is something you cannot do with plastic toys.
Nowadays, children are more interested in the things that they can do with their mobile gadgets. Creating something or doing things manually no longer interest. If your child shows interest in carpentry or woodworking, you must be one lucky parent. Your child could be a budding artist for that matter. Hence, do as much as you can to encourage your young carpenter. The following tips will show you how to do that and wehre to start.
Research about safety – Woodworking can be dangerous. Guide your child in treating all tools – manual and electric – with utmost care. Make sure that you and your child consistently use the appropriate safety equipment. This means both of you should wear proper articles of clothing and woodworking gears like work boots with hard-thick soles, gloves, goggles, dust masks, etc.
Prepare age-appropriate tools – This means toddlers and young children should begin with toy tools. Tweeners, on the other hand, may begin using real or actual woodworking tools. Let your young child begin with sanding wood blocks. As they grow older, let them help you with harder tasks which involve the manipulation of bigger and heavier tools.
Collect woodworking items – You will encounter items that can be used for simple woodworking tasks down the road. Collect them and place them in your workstation even though you’re not working on a project at the moment. Show them to your child as these will encourage creativity, imagination and promotes interest.
Get involved – Show your child that you’re interested in woodworking as well. Let them watch you and assist you in your woodworking projects. This will make them feel important and capable of helping you. Start small easy projects with them. Invite their friends to join you if possible. This will make them happier while working and learning at the same time.
Note: I don’t own this video. All credits to the owner.
Although carpentry or woodworking involves the extensive use of your hands, the success of the stuffs you are working on would not be possible without a proper set of tools. I will be sharing in this post basic tools needed for any woodwork project you have at hand.
Hammer: This is a tool efficient in fastening or joining pieces of wood. The claw hammer is a typical type which is very useful and versatile. The claw hammer has smooth and semi-round head. One side is used for pulling nails and the other side is used for striking them.
Utility Knife: The ideal utility knife to have is the one with a locking mechanism that involves the use of disposable razor blades. This tool is helpful when cleaning up a hinge cavity. Do you want to engrave a design or your name on your project? A knife is useful in this case.
Chisels: A chisel performs almost the same function with the knife. It cleans up the joints and mortises. They come in sizes of 1/4 inch, 1/2 inch, 3/4 inch and 1 inch. Chisels are great investments and so it is best to buy all available sizes.
Screwdrivers: Screwdrivers come in varieties known as Phillips, flat head, square head, star and Torx. Just like the other tools, they are sold in different sizes too.
Layout Square: As the term suggests, this is best tool to use in making a square line for an end cut in a jiffy. In fact, this can also be used to mark any angle up to 45-degrees or measure up to six inches.
Level: Do you need a piece of wood measuring perfectly horizontal or vertical? A level can help you achieve just that. Purchase a long one and short one for easy use.
Retractable Tape Measure: This is obviously used for making measurements. Apart from having standard metric markings, a locking mechanism and a slightly loose hook situated at the end of the tape. This tool is great for making external and internal measurements.