Wide Ruins

This bowl is 4 1/2" high by 11 1/2" in diameter, and in this particular incarnation has 142 pieces. The main body of the bowl is Honduran Mahogany, the patterns are constructed of maple, walnut, and padauk (white, brown, and orange), and the dark frames around the patterns are wenge.

This is one of the very few designs I use which was taken almost directly from someone else's example. Better Homes and Gardens' WOOD magazine has published a series of project books, one of which is entitled Turning Techniques and Projects You Can Make. One of the articles in this book, written by Jim Downing and entitled "A Southwest-Inspired Bowl," tells how to make a bowl that looks exactly like this one. I do note, however, that the technique described in that article is almost exactly not how I made this one. Since the patterns are traditional Native American in origin, I don't feel too bad about making extensive use of his design.

A word about the name of the bowl: an extensive search for something to call the larger, pointier shape in the design eventually led me to a book on Navajo rugs. "Wide Ruins" is the name of the rug style (and the area from which that style originated) which contained the closest approximation to the design as it appears in the bowl. Also, since it's a big bowl, if I manage to make an irreparable mess of it during construction, it's accurate to call the result a wide ruin, but we won't go into that. . . .