From the Woodshop

From the Woodshop

Crafting wise I do not have much to report as I am finished with the granny square blanket (see previous post Attack of the Giant Granny Square Blanket) and I am currently working on hand stitching Seattle Scrappy (see previous post and the post An Update on “Seattle Scrappy” – Haphazard Stitching… ).

So I am going to take this opportunity to share what the other crafty person in the house, my partner John has been working on.

A couple months ago we turned part of our basement into his woodshop (we had it professionally drywalled as well as electrical added, while John put in the floor and did all the finishing work), so he could have his own “craft room”.


His workshop is a work in progress and evolving. For the first time in his life he has his dream of having his own dedicated woodshop beyond just tinkering in the garage.

John and I met in mid-2019 after suddenly each losing our long time spouses/life partners in 2018. We decided that since how long you have to live your life is unknown (when you become a widow/widower you think a lot about your own mortality in addition to grieving the loss of your spouse) we would not hold back from having our dreams (within reason and within financial possibilities of course!). One of his lifelong dreams was to have his own woodshop!

(One of our shared dreams is travel and pre-COVID pandemic we had many plans for travel in 2020, but you all know about “best laid plans” when it comes to 2020…)

Mike the miniature schnauzer did a guest blog post a couple weeks ago (yes, yes, stop your disbeliefs that my dog writes blog posts, ha, ha) on some of the projects John has been working on – Guest Blog Post: A Whole Lot of Remodeling Going On , but I thought I would share some of the projects since that post.

Wood Blocking Board

I saw on Instagram wood blocking boards for granny squares and asked John if he could make me one – and he did!

Here is an image of one I found online and texted him the image:


He watched a couple YouTube videos and checked out some on Pinterest and figured it out how to make me one:


It’s going to be great to use for making my next granny square blanket – I can stack my blocks pretty high with the long pegs.

Bike Holders/Storage

John loves Pinterest as a great source of ideas. He wanted to get our bikes off just sitting on the ground of the garage and found a cool design for a bike rack and made one for each of our bikes!

He made mine first so most of the images are of mine with some detailed images of the rack to include the little drawer he built for it also. 


The little drawer is perfect to keep your biking gloves and other small items related to cycling. It is very easy to lift our bikes out of the holders.

Magnetic Board

I am obsessed with Scrabble letters. I have a collection of Scrabble letters from thrift stores and old Scrabble games. I’ve made gifts from them in the past like friend’s names spelled in Scrabble letters affixed to a magnetic strip. Recently while at a thrift shop I found a bag of Scrabble letters with individual thin magnetic strips attached. 

This led to the idea of creating a magnetic board for my home office where I could write inspirational messages for myself with Scrabble letters! I asked John and he made it happen!


Currently up on the board I have the Maya Angelou quote:

Nothing can dim the light which shines from within.

Custom Tables for his Woodshop

The first table John made for his woodshop was a table/stand/storage for his Miter Saw:


He used purchased plans he downloaded online to make this table and then made some adjustments for his needs.

Recently he made himself another table/stand/storage, this time without pre-purchased plans! He designed a table for his Planer with storage drawers with cool pulls he ordered online:


Exercise Room for Water Rower

And the big project that John recently completed did not technically involve his woodshop as he did much for the work in the garage – he converted part of our unfinished storage room in the basement into an exercise room for our new Water Rower. This involved framing out and dry walling the room. A wonderful friend helped him with a lot of the initial labor related to framing,  installing the drywall, and pulling electrical for lighting and wall outlets.


The artwork in the room was my idea and I found it at a thrift shop. John created the frame around the world map. I figured we can daydream about travel while we row.  We found a television on sale and an inexpensive TV mount online so we can watch rowing instructional videos (or Netflix) while rowing.

We repurposed an old bookcase for our “gym” towels and water bottles like they would have at a real gym. John also put in a vent for the room for ventilation while we break a sweat.

Well I better go work on my hand stitching so I can have something to show you in the future – John makes me look pretty lazy!


Do you remember how in the post The Inpatient Schnauzer: Update on the Granny Square Afghan (Guest Blogger), Mike the miniature schnauzer was getting impatient for me to finish the granny square blanket? So it is all finished but he seems to have moved on!

He is now in love with a new fleece blanket we recently picked up and has become inseparable from it!


I guess schnauzers are fickle!

Let me close this post with a sign/piece of artwork I discovered while thrifting that I put up outside John’s woodshop door. I think it goes with the aesthetic of a woodshop and also embraces how we are hoping to live our lives:


Feature Image Photo by Joel & Jasmin Førestbird on Unsplash

40 thoughts on “From the Woodshop”

  1. All the progress is making me dizzy! So wonderful to see people just getting on with life. It’s been so hard for so many and you and John have provided so much inspiration just in this one post- new workshop… bike racks… granny racks… I feel like such a slacker! We have so much farther to go but I am confident that in 2021 we will start turning things around. I see that Mike did exactly that- when life disappointed him with a half finished granny square blanket, he turned his attention elsewhere, to what he already had ;>). We should all be more like Mike!

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    1. Thanks so much I really appreciate your thoughtful comments! I have to admit Mike’s new blanket is pretty darn cozy so I understand while he abandon the granny square blanket for the fleece blanket! I am very hopeful about 2021 🙂


    1. Yeah I saw that online and I thought it was just the most ingenious thing to stack up your granny squares and to block them if they’re kind of wonky 🙂 John says thanks 🙂


  2. Wow, You both have been really busy, Love the magnetic board, and had no idea that granny squares could be stored on a wooden board, great idea. I´ll be showing this post to my hubby 😉 🙂

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  3. I’m forwarding this post to my hubby…this is inspirational for us both!!!!! Terry will love this!!!!
    That granny separator thingie is quite ingenious. And that rower room borders on obsessive (in a good way!). It is such fun to see how an idea became a reality within the context of DIY home construction…wow!
    This all goes way beyond ‘man-cave’ mentality!

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    1. It is a great workshop especially when it used to just be a sofa and a TV in the corner of the room as the downstairs stand! It was pure waste of space and we never use the area much. Thanks for sharing the post


  4. You are both too clever for your own good! I love the bike storage and your granny square board. Maybe I should forward this to my husband to encourage him to clean up his woodworking mess in the garage…hmmmm????

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  5. You two make great companions for one another. John certainly is very talented. I’m impressed with his woodworking abilities. The bike hanger is amazing as well as the cabinets in his shop. I think my spouse would love to share his space. Thank you for sharing!

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  6. Incredible projects, Tierney. I am happy to hear about the woodshop (there is no better time to embrace our dreams than now, so true). 🙂 And I’m so glad to see that you now have some new granny-square blocking equipment. That is so nifty and handy!


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