Detailing the Da Vinci Lovespoon

With the spoon bowl carved out with my Sorby gouge, the back face of the bowl is then shaped with a regular wood chisel. I still use my Marples wood chisels from 30 years ago and they keep a good keen edge after sharpening. With good quality tools it only takes one purchase to last a lifetime and although I have bought cheaper tools in the past I have totally regretted the fact. You may save a few bucks initially but after a few uses I have been totally dismayed with the performance, so from my point of view, buy the best you can afford even if it’s one at a time.

Carving the details.

So moving on with this carving, after finishing the spoon bowl and back face I decided to work my way up the carving, mainly so I could give myself time to consider how I would approach the emblem. The rose would be carved so as to retain the sharp outline using a Celtic knotwork to enhance the rose. This always needs extra time to prevent the end grain from chipping out but the end result is worth it.

I tried to split the overlap of the knotwork evenly so that it gives the impression of weaving the petals together and keeping the edges sharp so as to maintain the rose outline. If it does chip out I have to cut the overlap deeper so it has to be done with care, the end grain on parts of the rose are less than an 1/8″ in width so any undue twisting will result in the petal cracking.

Moving forward to the cross I’ve decided to carve a triangular section throughout. This entailed marking a centerline with a pencil on the inside of the cross. To carve this angle I use a palm chisel which gives plenty of control and a knife to cut the diagonal corner line to give a crisp intersection. The pencil line indicates the center for the first carved side after which the spoon is flipped over and carved to the center again giving a clean triangular section. Any undue wobble on the inside of the cross is cleaned up with a sanding file and the triangular section made good.

I had noticed, as I continually remove material the Lovespoon is getting more flexible so I’m taking extra care to keep the carving flat on my carving board. This helps as much as possible to eliminate the flex, even though there are times when you have to hold it to get the best vantage point.

Carving the Lovespoon

I quite liked the effect of the section given to the cross so I continued with that theme through the heart which will eventually link to the Emblem of the Priory of Sion. I have a good idea how I will carve that emblem and I will have to use my micro carvers for that job, things are going to get a little tight in some of the areas so here’s hoping, no chip out.

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