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Rated: E · Review · Opinion · #2275057
Lost Art Press reprints the classic woodworking articles of Charles H. Hayward
Lost Arts Press continues its fifth in a series of reprints from the writings of Charles Hayward, editor and contributor to a U.K. periodical, The Woodworker magazine. As is the case with several of the Press publications, this is a big book- 465 pages contained within an 8 1/2" by 11", one-inch-thick hardback binding. As such, it fills a welcome space on my bookshelf, as well as the need for quality reading material.

Part of the reason for such a large book is the nature of the content- not so much for ease of reading the printed word, but because Hayward was a superb illustrator. His column, called "Chips from the Chisel," consisted of an essay centered on woodcraft, but tackled it from a philosophical viewpoint. The writing is a celebration of the act of creation, and how learning a craft brings joy and fulfillment to one's soul. Filling space around the text are illustrations of assembly plans, woodworking history, part breakdowns, tool techniques, and scenes illustrating the aesthetic value of a finely crafted piece of furniture, part of the beauty of this sizeable tome being that it provides an entry point for the novice, as well as the established craftsman.

Hayward's hard-earned view of the world can best be summed up in these words from a 1959 essay: "Once we realize that to use and develop our own skill for our own sake and that of those around us, we have taken the plunge into a new world." By reading "Honest Labour," one enters into a world not filled with archaic information but one brimming with timeless wisdom and instructions to improve that world we all share.

Buy this book. Treasure it.
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