Maker Interview: Thorne and Anchor

The first Made+Good Maker interview…

Tom, who works under the name Thorne and Anchor was one of the first Makers I came across on Instagram when I started scouting for products for the Made+Good site – he makes beautifully, hand carved wooden spoons and says he is "on a one man mission to get back to creating things the way they should be created, with love, time and care"…

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Who are you?
My name is Tom.
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What do you Make/Do?
I hand carve wooden spoons and other utensils at my home on the isle of wight. My aim is to make products that have both purpose and beauty.
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Do you have a background in craft and design – when did you first start making?
I have always had a passion for anything creative. I studied Fine Art at University before falling into graphic design. I love to find new outlets for my creativity. 4 year ago now I happened to stumble across carving on a cold winters evening using a Stanley knife to carve my first ever spoon, its turned into my biggest passion creatively and I have spent almost every day since then teaching myself to carve.  
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Can you describe your typical making process?
All of the wood I use is reclaimed, this means I have a wide range of different woods to chose from which is great. When making, I will select a nice piece, draw out the spoon very carefully making sure I get all the measurements exact, then cut that piece of wood into a rough shape. I then grab my crook knife (basically a knife in the shape of a hook) and away I go! Starting with the ‘bowl’ of the spoon before moving on the refine the main shape with a standard carving knife. The process depending on how complex the shape is, and how hard/soft the wood is takes anywhere from 2 hours to well into double figures!
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What do you enjoy most about the process?
I love watching the spoon emerge from the wood. It’s so rewarding to start off with a single piece of wood and end up with a beautiful product at the end of the day. 
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Can you describe your studio/workspace?
I work from home, currently carving on our lounge floor. I hope to soon have a studio space to call my own and be able to make as much mess as I want to in!
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What keeps you going whilst you work - soundtrack? Snacks? A fluffy sidekick?
My favourite thing to do before I start carving is to make myself a nice cup of filter coffee so keep me going. My wife also blesses me by refilling my biscuit tin with yummy treats, I do love a good snack! I usually have some nice chilled acoustic playlist on in the background… or the sport! 
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What can we look forward to seeing from you in the future?
I’m hoping to get some time this coming year to put into learning how to use my lathe. I’m excited about the prospect of making some cool pieces with both lathed and hand carved elements. 
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Three things you can’t live without:
Family walks in the forrest with my wife, son and springer spaniel Lilly. 
The beach, growing up by the sea, I don’t I could ever function without seeing the sea at least twice a week!
Sport, any sport. 
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Three favourite places:
Thorness Bay, it’s where my wife and I got engaged and then lived off grid for the first 6 months of our marriage. 
We recently had a trip to Copenhagen, we absolutely loved it there and look forward to exploring more of Scandinavia. 
The Isle of Wight, the best place in the world. 
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Three favourite foods:
Olives.
My wife's Curry.
Freshly baked bread and local honey.
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See Tom's lovely wooden spoons in the Made+Good Kitchen collection here.
Photography by Maria Bell.
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