The Bookshelf Project

When AWS assumed the property at its Olivebridge, NY, office headquarters in April 2016, we at the office came into possession of some extra boards that had been cut from logs to make fencing that kept the goats captive. No joke. The boards lay in a pile among some uprooted stumps, between the main office and the creek.

Some of these boards had interesting contours, shapes, and grains. Many had circular saw marks. There were knots and flaws. Some were worm-eaten. They were faded and handsomely aged by a few years lying in the sun. The best of these boards I set aside, getting them out of the elements in the AWS Workshop. When I found the time, I began designing a bookshelf for the ground-floor lobby.

Here’s a look at the result.

About a year later, I made a second one, this time larger, for the Executive Suite that I occupy on second floor. The tricky part with this one was shaping the base—the board that meets the ground. My technique for flattening it so it’d sit level on the ground was to stand on it, and rock and twist it back and forth on the porous and gritty concrete surface of the AWS Workshop.

There are different types of woodworking: fine woodworking, and primitive woodworking. I practice the latter.