Firsts in the Shop

Recently, I read a magazine that focused its entire issue on firsts: first people in North America, first person to reach the South Pole, first person to discover DNA … you get the drift. Which got me thinking. Even as a young kid I was building things from wood… tree houses, ramps for bike jumps, a floating “shack raft” (I lived by a lake). But none of those things struck me as my first real “woodworking project.” Even as I started working for my dad in his cabinet shop, I mostly just worked on pieces: doors, shelves, side panels. Then one day I built a bookcase for a young woman who I had a big crush on (we married each other a few years later), and that was it. I was hooked on doing the real thing.

So how about you? What was your first “real” woodworking project? Why did you build it? This is the sort of thing I like to find out. And, of course, we will share your responses as we can.

Rob Johnstone, Woodworker’s Journal

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