2024 Guild School

June 8-15, 2024 - Maine Maritime Academy, Castine, Maine

36 Hour Classes

INSTRUCTOR: Peter Kendall, Fellow
COURSE: Interior Room Construction
PROJECT: Office/Parlor of 18th Century Newport Shipowner’s House

This class is FULL.

The class project is a room that served as an office/parlor in the home of a shipowner in 18th Century Newport, Rhode Island and is based on one in the Samuel Whitehorne House Museum. The instructor received the Independent Study Award from IGMA to study the house and The Newport Restoration Foundation, owner of the house, provided the instructor access to the house as well as photographs, drawings, and other information. A ship owner in 18th Century Newport was a prosperous man who had just recently attained his status and wealth, prospering from trade with the Far East, Africa and the Caribbean islands. Human nature being the same then as today, such an individual exhibited his newly gained wealth with a fashionable house filled with the latest tastes in English and Continental furniture, wallpapers, silver, textiles and the like. Office buildings did not exist in 18th Century America. Business with merchants, bankers, and other businessmen was conducted in this room.

The interior space is 16" W x 10" D x 9 ½" H. The back wall has a fireplace and two recessed windows with shutters. Students will construct these features, as well as flooring, baseboard, chair rail, cornice (comprised of several elements) and the window trim. A 1" scale version of an historic English wallpaper of the period will be supplied. The windows overlook the harbor. Harbor scenes will be provided. Students will construct the framework behind the room to contain the exterior scenes. Students will have the option to make the exterior side walls of the room, consisting of brick foundation, clapboard siding and trim. Exterior measurements of the structure are 17" W x 12" D x 11" H. Depth includes 2" for the exterior scenes.

TIME: 36 hours. Completion is unlikely. However students will have the necessary information to complete the project on their own at home.

POWER TOOLS: table saw, scroll saw, shaper/mill

SKILL LEVEL: Intermediate and advanced

MATERIALS FEE: $250 to be collected in advance of school. There is an optional fee of $50 for materials for the exterior — the brick foundation, clapboard siding and trim.

INSTRUCTOR: Sun Lemmens, Fellow
COURSE: Adding Sound, Light and Motion to a Mixed Media Project
PROJECT: Winter Wonderland

There is magic in the air during the last days of the year and Christmas trees, giving sparkling light during the darkest days, have been a part of this festival for as long as people can remember. This special tree combines light with movement and music. Students of all skill levels will have a lot of fun during this class. The tree is illuminated with 17 LED lights and has a moving train riding around and around. Snowmen are skating on the ice, while a tiny electronic device will add music to the joy. Students will learn about lighting: soldering, connecting wires, testing with a multi-meter and hiding the wires. Moving parts will be made by connecting a motor and the use of gears. To add sound in this project, students will learn to program a music-module. (Bring your own favorite music!)

After finishing the electronics, students will continue with decorating the tree. Little trees will be made with polymer clay and decorated with scenery snow. The use of still water will be explained as will the use of different paint techniques on the snowmen and houses. This Wonder Tree is about 10 inches high and will fit into a glass dome that is sold by IKEA.

Luc Lemmens will be assisting in this class.

TIME: 36 hours. Completion is likely.

POWER TOOLS: flex shaft, soldering iron

SKILL LEVEL: Beginner and intermediate

MATERIALS FEE: $130 to be collected at school

INSTRUCTOR: Deb Mackie, Artisan
COURSE: Leather Furniture
PROJECT: Tooled Leather Armchair

This big, old overstuffed chair might bring to mind a grandpa and a couple of grandkids sitting in it together, reading stories by the fire. Invitingly cushy, this 1:12 scale leather armchair might just make you wish YOU were small enough to curl up in it with a good book of your own! Students will build the chair frame, and cover it with padding. Top grain leather will be combined with tooled panels to upholster the chair, with several choices of colors and antiqued accents. Leather techniques taught include tooling, stamping, skiving, and the use of dyes and finishes. The chair will be finished with lots of tiny brass “tacks” and other brass adornments, custom-made for this class by Dr. G’s Brasshole.

TIME: 36 hours. Completion is likely.


SKILL LEVEL: Intermediate. Experience with leather is not required, but students should be familiar with using a scalpel or Xacto-type knife, fitting small parts together and using different types of glue.

MATERIALS FEE: $95 to be collected in advance of school. Some extra items like leather, additional brass pieces or tools may be available for additional, varied fees.

INSTRUCTOR: Marie-Louise Markhorst, Artisan
COURSE: Metalwork
PROJECT: Metal Stove

Every kitchen needs a stove! This metal miniature stove is loosely based on 19th Century kitchen stoves. In those days stoves were fuelled with wood or coals and often provided hot water. The metal stove that students are going to make will have opening doors, a drawer, and a tap/faucet. The top will have openings as well. In this class students will learn how to make this stove from scratch. They will use tin metal sheet, copper sheet and copper wire. Students will use the jeweler’s saw to practice their sawing skills, for the doors are adorned with metal patterns sawn out of metal sheet. These patterns will be riveted onto the doors. Students will also make different types of hinges. The tap/faucet will be provided by the instructor. Finally, the stove will get a black finish and a copper stovepipe.

TIME: 36 hours. Completion is likely.

POWER TOOLS: moto tool, drill press

SKILL LEVEL: All levels

MATERIALS FEE: $80 to be collected at school. A set of riveting tools will be offered as an option for an additional fee of $25.

INSTRUCTOR: Mark Murphy, Fellow
COURSE: Furniture Construction
PROJECT: Japanese Step-Chest (ca. 1870)

This class is FULL.

The Japanese step-chest (kaidan dansu) idea evolved during the late Edo period, 1780–1868. It was a freestanding staircase with built-in compartments. They are usually made in either two or three sections, with drawers, sliding doors or lift-out doors built into the design, becoming not only storage compartments but an architectural statement as well. They were most often used in rural areas to connect the ground floor to the loft of a home or shop. Today these step-chests are often used as freestanding display pieces for plants, books or other decorative objects. The compartments vary from chest to chest. The average ones usually have two sliding door compartments with drawers of various sizes arranged around the sliding doors. The drawers and lift-out doors are plain and undecorated, with the sliding doors often having wooden slats as decorative elements. This step-chest has all of these elements.

This class is designed for students to learn the construction techniques for creating this two-part piece. Along with the construction of the two cases students will be constructing and fitting all of the drawers, sliding doors and one lift-out door. When the construction is completed students will also learn how to apply the hardware on the drawers and doors.

TIME: 36 hours. The expectation is that everyone will have all of the construction of the piece finished by the end of class with some final finishing to be completed at home — sanding, staining and the final wax finish.

POWER TOOLS: table saw, shaper, drill press

SKILL LEVEL: Intermediate

MATERIALS FEE: $90 to be collected at school

INSTRUCTOR: Troy Schmidt, Fellow
COURSE: Wheel-Thrown Pottery
PROJECT: Throwing Miniature Pottery on a Potter’s Wheel

This is a general pottery class to learn the traditional techniques of forming ceramic miniatures by centering, opening and shaping clay vessels using the Guild School’s micro-pottery wheels. The class will use both porcelain and stoneware clay bodies and explore various vessel forms to create pottery in a wide range of styles. Students will also learn the basics of glazing their pieces using dozens of provided glazes in a range of colors. Pieces will then be fired in an electric kiln. For those students who are interested in learning to fire their own work, they may be as involved as they wish in the firing process with further in-depth discussions regarding a range of firing techniques and practices. Students will also examine different methods to salvage fired pots that didn’t come out as expected, such as fixing glaze runs and re-firing.

TIME: 36 hours. Completion is likely.

POWER TOOLS: mini potter’s wheel

SKILL LEVEL: Beginner and intermediate. This class is open to all skill levels and students will progress at their own pace. First-time students will learn the fundamentals of throwing miniature pottery on a small potter’s wheel while those students with experience will advance their abilities to create more intricate and sophisticated forms (thinner walls, greater refinement, more controlled glazing).

MATERIALS FEE: $40 to be collected at school

INSTRUCTOR: Susan Van Tubbergen, Fellow
COURSE: Wheel Thrown Pottery
PROJECT: The Tiny Barnyard: Wheel Throwing and Hand Sculpting Ceramic Farm Animals

In this class students will learn to throw basic pottery forms that will be altered and embellished to create charming farm animals. Students who are a beginners, can start with more basic forms; intermediate students will be challenged to throw more refined vessels. Students will have the option to make vases, planters, banks or closed hollow forms. Students will be shown how to center, open and shape forms using both white and red earthenware clay. The Guild School’s micro wheels will be provided, but students are welcome to bring their own wheel if preferred.

Students will learn to create chickens, cows and pigs, or have the option to create their own unique barnyard animal if desired. Sculpting techniques, making attachments, stamping, slip trailing and creating your own personal tools will be covered. Stains, glazes and underglazes will be provided in a variety of colors as well as instruction on applications. We will review firing schedules so everyone is comfortable using an electric kiln.

Before focusing on pottery, the instructor was also a doll sculptor. She will demonstrate how to add expression and personality to your pieces. We’ll cover how to add eyes, ears, smiles, tails, feathers and other embellishments to really make these little animals come alive. This will be a fun class and everyone will complete at least one of each animal.

TIME: 36 hours. Completion is likely.

POWER TOOLS: micro pottery wheel

SKILL LEVEL: Beginner and intermediate

MATERIALS FEE: $35 to be collected at school