When I started Turning Pro, my business partner (my sister) wanted to stay behind the scenes. But, now that I’ve been in business for awhile, we’ve decided she should be in front of the scenes, so to speak.
So here she is, my sister and business partner, Anni!
Ben’s job description: Make cool stuff. Learn how to make stuff cooler. Make cooler stuff.
Anni’s job description: Photography, online work, packaging. All the stuff Ben doesn’t want to do. :)
So now you know!
Recently my uncle gave me some Ebony wood!
It’s very rare to have a whole log of Ebony, most of the time you have to buy it in small pieces.
Ebony is a very dense hardwood. It’s so heavy that it sinks in water!
Traditionally, piano keys and the black pieces in chess sets were made out of ebony, while the white pieces were made out of ivory.
Tip: The log had a few small cracks in it, so I used melted candle wax to seal it. I had to use wax because I wasn’t at home, and didn’t have my end-grain sealer that I normally use. This was the only thing I could think of to keep it from cracking more. It seemed to work well.
A few weeks ago, I cut up the log into manageable pieces. I’ll have to plan and use them very carefully! I’m very excited to be able to use such a special kind of wood.
I love doing custom orders! They are often challenging, which is why I like them.
A few weeks ago, a lady saw one of my egg cups, and asked if I could make another so she could buy two. I ended up making the second one out of contrasting wood, which made a great his/her set.
Another custom order I’ve done was for deer antler pens. A man wanted pens made out of deer antler from a hunting trip he’d been on. We negotiated prices, and he ended up buying three!
One of the most interesting custom orders that I’ve had was to make something I’d never heard of before: sugar cone molds! I think it’s pretty sweet that some people still make sugar cones by hand. The lady who contacted me sent me a picture and dimensions, and I took a whack at it. This is how it turned out:
I actually ended up making two cone molds, and she bought them both!
It was really fun to make something totally new. Don’t be afraid to ask for custom orders. I just might be able to make what you want!
My mom is a writer and editor for Area Women Magazine in town. The magazine is mainly stories about women around here.
Mom had a meeting with the owner of the magazine one day about a month ago. Like any good mom, she likes bragging about her children. She showed Mike (the owner) one of my pens. He was impressed and impulsively decided to do a story on me! When I heard, my first reaction was, “But I’m not a woman!” and my second reaction was “free advertising … niiiice.” Needless to say, my second reaction won out. Later that month, my mom interviewed me and wrote up the story! The magazine came out today:
It’s cool to have an actual story about me in a magazine. I still find it humorous that I’m in this particular magazine, though!