Local wood suppliers; be sure to check with them, you might be surprised what you can find available in your area, there are many less commercial woods which can by used for carving, even a felled tree from a house yard could be beautiful carving wood if milled and air dried. (The rule of thumb for air drying is one year of drying time per inch of thickness, 2 inches thick is good for carving work, be sure milled wood is stickered and stacked well and dry for this period. Air circulation is essential.)

Look for wood in the classifieds in the back of Chip Chats, the invaluable bi-monthly magazine published for the members of the National Wood Carvers Association, an excellent source of information on the art of carving wood. Contact at P.O. Box 43218, Cincinnati OH 45243. Or, I get Basswood and Yellow Poplar (Tulip tree) from , Edensaw Woods, 211 Seton Road, Port Townsend, WA 98368 (360) 385-7878 email: edensaw@edensaw.com Good prices. As a subscriber to the woodcarvers mailing list I have also found out about many other sources of basswood, probe for what is in your region.

Tools, Glue

Stores and catalogs are in abundance, again, check the Chips Chat classifieds. I like Tool Crib of the North (PO box 14040 Grand Forks, ND 58208 1-800-358-3096), WoodCraft Supply (1-800-225-1153 / tech@woodcraft.com) is good and a number of other companies as well, I won't list them all here.

Glass Eyes and Faceted Stained Glass Jewels

Eyes: Van Dyke's, 4th Ave. & 6th Street / P.O. Box 278 Woonsocket, SD 57385 Phone: (605) 796-4425 / Order Line: 1-800-843-3320

Jewels: Mayer Import Co. Inc., 25 W. 37th St., New York, N.Y. 10018

Tails & stirrups

Nostalgia, Sally Craig, 1-717-295-9188, Elizibethtown, PA.  Tails, stirrups, and more.

Jim Bond, I.T., 35113 Brewster Rd., Lebanon, OR 97355 1-541-258-3645, great resource, tails in the raw, you clean, wash and shape them, good prices.

Tandy Leather Co. 275 stores throughout U.S.A. call 1-800-533-0110. They have leather, leather tools and hardware for leather.


Check with your local hardware store for the regular wood fillers, use an exterior type. Stay away from the Bondo epoxy type filler, it is very dangerous to use. Acrylic modeling paste, available at art stores, can also be used for special build-up situations (especially on restorations).

Paints etc.

Initially, the animal must be covered with a good oil-based primer, this is best for protecting the animal and sticking for the color coats. For the color coats, acrylic latex gloss and semi-gloss enamels in quart cans are available at the local paint or hardware store, the better quality ones mix better and last longer. Red, blue, yellow, white & black are essential, a green and a brown and maybe a purple are also good, plus any other colors you don't feel like mixing up yourself. White and yellow are used up the quickest. Regular household bristle paint brushes are fine for the basic paint job, especially for getting large color areas down. Artist type brushes can also be used, especially for the details and dry brushing. Many other techniques of putting on color which require stencil brushes, sponges, etc. can be used depending on the desired effect.

Beautiful water-based opalescent and transparent paints are available from Nova Colors, 5894 Blackwelder St., Culver City, CA 90232, these paints are not cheap but they are a very high quality. The ingredients for the glaze can be found at professional paint stores, one can also buy pre-made antiquing type glazes, these work but are not as rich as the handmade glaze. The final clear protective coating is also available at the paint store, water base Varathane "Diamond Coat" is good, regular oil base Varathane is also good. Genuine varnish is traditional but tends to yellow with time, this can be a desired effect too. Gold leafing (artificial type) and sizing (the glue) is available at most art stores, real gold leaf is harder to find but not so expensive as to rule out completely, it also looks good.

More on painting and glazing later.


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