THE SWEETGRASS JOINERY COMPANY
TRADITIONAL UNFEIGNED HEAVY TIMBER CARPENTRY & WOODCRÆFT
and all other manner of shelter fit for man, beast, and crop
The Sweetgrass Joinery Company was established in 2001 in Geauga County, Ohio. Founded as a small-scale cottage industry on our family farm, it remains so to this day. Eighteen years and counting, I still design and craft traditional “bench made” timber frames one at a time in my small shop at the corner of a hay field, near the edge of a woods.
Traditionally-based heavy timber carpentry is truly a handicraft, deeply rooted in the past, yet it remains relevant and uniquely adaptable to a modern functionalism and aesthetic. It is timeless. This simple premise guides my hands and heart through each project, be it large or small, fancy or plain.
My patterns of design, methods of work, and choice of materials arise from and are heavily influenced by the forest cultures of both Early North America and Northern Europe. I prefer and encourage the use of locally grown and harvested sources of wood and often integrate trees harvested from the building site.
I make a concerted effort to practice a way of design & building that is balanced, principled, and faithful to the craft.
My timber-work is fully structural and differs little from the vernacular timber carpentry of 200 years ago. I use traditional mortise & tenon joinery secured with riven wooden pegs and wedges. Sometimes, the old ways simply remain the best ways.
I work alone, taking on only one job at a time. My pace is slow, but purposeful, and my approach methodical. This allows me to offer you a consistently high level of craftsmanship and creativity with a focus on detail, through & through. Hopefully, you’ll find my work worthy of the wait.
Please look over this sampling of my labor – the work of my hands. I have been so fortunate to have had the opportunity to design and craft such a wide array of timber-frames over the past years. Perhaps you will consider me when the time comes. I look forward to meeting you and working with you.
S.A. Carlson, maker & owner