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Birch, Bark & Antler: Decorative Handles for the Nordic Kitchen

Stacked handle flatware is classic aesthetic of the Nordic kitchen. From cheese planes to spatulas, serving spoons to filet knives, the handles of these items are a reflection of three basic Scandinavian natural materials – birch wood, stacked birch bark and reindeer antler. Starting with these essential materials, learn to shape and layer the handles, and then fasten to the Nordic metalware provided by the instructor. From there, design and shape a custom fit handle using traditional carving techniques, then sand to a smooth, finished product.

You’ll have stories to tell the next time you cut, slice or serve with your stacked handle flatware. Materials fee covers the cost of the Nordic crafted metalware.

Registration in the March 2017 session of this class includes participation in mini classes & excursions on Friday, March 3, as part of Wood Week. More information will be provided upon registration. Please plan to participate!


New! Tue, Feb 28, 2017 - Thu, Mar 02, 2017
(Early bird tuition deadline: 01/17/17)

Course Details

Length in days:


$270.00 per student (Regular rate)
$255.00 per student (Early-bird rate)

Varies ($45-$65)

Beginner to Advanced

Age with adult:

* The Feb 28, 2017 course is part of the Wood Week event

Making it happen:
  • When should I enroll?
  • Do you take last minute registrations?
  • When will new course dates be posted?

You will need the following tools for this class:

  1. pencil
  2. paper
  3. carving knife with short blade (2" to 3")
Once registered, students will receive a confirmation packet in the mail that may offer additional optional tool recommendations and suggested reading.
Harley Refsal Harley Refsal

Harley specializes in Scandinavian-style flat plane figure carving, a minimalist style that leaves the tool marks exposed. He has won numerous carving awards and has taught carving classes throughout the United States, Canada, and Scandinavia. In 1996 he was decorated by the government and King of Norway for his contributions to Norwegian folk art studies. Harley is the author of "Art and Technique of Scandinavian-Style Woodcarving." In addition to his carving and teaching, Harley is a professor of Norwegian language and Scandinavian folk art at Luther College, Decorah, Iowa.

More about Harley Refsal
Mike Schelmeske Mike Schelmeske

Mike's interest in Native American and Scandinavian traditions has kept him constantly pursuing boreal forest crafts and materials for project ideas. He finds utility craft particularly intriguing, and the thought of putting his crafts to work on an everyday level keeps him searching for the next project. Whether it's carving toys for his daughter Aurora or shaping canoe paddles from a crooked knife he fashioned from an old file, Mike's ingenuity and approach to craft is refreshing.

More about Mike Schelmeske
Birch, Bark & Antler: Decorative Handles for the Nordic Kitchen

Birch, Bark & Antler: Decorative Handles for the Nordic Kitchen

Birch, Bark & Antler: Decorative Handles for the Nordic Kitchen