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Birch Burl Bowl

Paper Birch

Handmade, one-of-a-kind

excellent display piece on jewelry bowl

finished w/ food-grade tung oil

made by Zach LaPerriere

Sitka, Alaska 2018

bowl measures 5 1/2” X 2 1/4”



“Wabi-sabi acknowledges that just as it is important to know when to make choices, it is also important to know when not to make choices: to let things be.”
—Leonard Koren, NYC aesthetics and art expert


This is a special bowl.  The burl was salvaged by a friend who lives in a small community in South Central Alaska.  Paper birch is also called canoe birch, because people have made canoes from the bark of large trees for thousands of years.

After drying this slowly for about a year I took the burl to the wood lathe and then made a big decision. Who was I turn shape the outside of the bowl when Mother Nature already had a shape I couldn’t improve upon?

So I carefully shaped the bowl and left the frilly bark surface on the outside.  If you look at the photos closely you’ll see that I shaped a shallow raised base to keep the bark edge from touching the surface it sits upon.

The interior of the bowl shows classic burl grain: chatoyance that refracts lights in different directions depending upon how you hold it.

I left a very broad rim to show the amazing grain, and shaped a rounded bowl interior just in case you decide to use this to hold jewelry or other special items.
The cuts surfaces have been carefully oiled by hand with my signature tung & citrus oil, while the bark edge is left in its natural state, looking just as it did when still in the northern boreal forest.

Birch is a superior firewood.  Whether you live in birch country or not, I could see this bowl displayed well on a fireplace mantel—but the choice is yours.
Because this bowl is made from a single burl, it will last for generations with minimal care.

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