|About the Book|
PREFACEThe writer contributed, during the past year, a series of articles on wood-carving to that most delightful of young folks magazines, Scribners St. Nicholas.The unexpected interest displayed in them, and the many questions asked not onlyMorePREFACEThe writer contributed, during the past year, a series of articles on wood-carving to that most delightful of young folks magazines, Scribners St. Nicholas.The unexpected interest displayed in them, and the many questions asked not only by friends, but by unknown correspondents, encourage the hope that a more complete description of the tools and mode of work might not be unacceptable - and it is with this thought that this little bark is launched upon the sea of books.Whatever the shortcomings or the merits of its cargo, it is freighted with the desire to carry its burden into many a happy port, and leave nothing but that which is healthful and helpful in its results.Especially is it consigned to the restless energies of the younger members of the household, in the hope that its course may direct them in channels where their labors will not be entirely lost, and where the time pleasantly passed in becoming familiar with even these simple tools and their uses, may in after life become valuable.G. A. S.Germantown, Phila., Pa.--FRET-SAWING AND WOOD-CARVINGFOR AMATEURS.fRET-SAWING has, within a few years past, jumped into a popularity rather hard to realize by those who are not within the pale of its fascinations- but it is a fact that today it is one of the most popular of home amusements. Within many a pleasant home is heard the gentle z-z-z of the handsaw, or the more sonorous buzz of the jig-machine - and walls and tables everjwhere are loaded with the results of these labors. Good, bad, and indifferent, large and small, dark and light, brackets, easels, book-racks, picture-frames, and other things too numerous to mention, — the houses and shops are alike full of them, and still they come. A good deal of this enthusiasm is spasmodic, and will die out- but there yet remains a large amount of solid interest to be provided for.The true secret of this suddenly acquired popularity lies in the fact that this amusement is within the reach of almost everyone, that it is easily acquired, costs but little, and is really productive of good results. It keeps us happily busy, gives us a resource for rainy days, and helps us recall ourselves pleasantly to the remembrance of those friends, whom we gratify by thinking of them while we make some pretty little object to adorn their rooms.For the young particularly, this is a most desirable pursuit. Its influences are alone for good, its associations solely refining and elevating. It does not take them to improper places, nor bring them in contact with doubtful characters. It cultivates their taste for the mechanical arts- it makes them handy and helpful in the use of the tools- it tends to develop any talent they may have for drawing and designing- and it may become a means of future profit as well as present pleasure..For the older members of the family, too, it has its charms. We can buy brackets, boxes, portfolios, and a thousand other things, cheaper perhaps, and more finely executed, than we are ever likely to produce them - but who can estimate the pleasure derived from the gift of an article done by some dear hand ? Slippers are all well enough in their way, but the most carefully kept ones will not wear forever. A handkerchief, with our monogram prettily wrought, makes a very tender souvenir- but they are apt to get blown off the line, sur, and disappear. Neckties are charming, but fleeting- even the bright colors of a pincushion fade, and the stitches fray with constant use.