Now, we’re getting somewhere. I’ve sanded with 90, 120, and 220 grit sandpaper and the wood is starting to come to life.

Some folks don’t like the grey growth rings in holly, and they bleach them out with chlorine or sulfur. I prefer to leave them in.

Smoother now, and a nicer shape overall.

I’ve done the first round of sanding in the second pic, but I’ll have to wait for the wood to dry to do the second round.

Ok, it’s hollowed out, almost as deep as I want to go. Let’s refine the overall shape a bit more, before we go any deeper.

Now, I’ll start hollowing out the inside of the spoon using a hook knife.

Make sure you slice across the grain, especially when you’re getting started.

There we go! That’s a bit more symmetrical and spoon-like.

I always carve spoons from wet wood. Every once and a while one will split as it dries, but it’s so much easier to carve wet wood, it’s worth the risk!

This is my whittling knife, I’ve had it since I was about 10. I’ll use it to begin creating a more refined spoon shape

Here’s the roughed out spoon shape, I cut this with a bandsaw.

In a pinch you can make these cuts with a small hatchet or a large knife. But I’m home, so I have a bandsaw handy.

Next, I’ll start refining the shape with a whittling knife

I’ve cut off a chunk, 9 inches long, with a crosscut saw. Here I split a piece off the side of the log with a hatchet.

The part of the cutting tool today was played by the, oft overlooked and criminally underrated, Woodman’s Pal.

Limbed and cut it’s about 10-11 feet long, about 3 1/2 inches at the base. A lot of spoon potential!

Snapped off, about 5 feet up the trunk, probably that bad snowstorm from a few weeks back. A beautiful holly tree, perfect for spoon carving, about 10 feet from the trailhead. *shrugs*

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