Wednesday, October 05, 2016

Hooks with Provenance at Auction is over. Thanks for dropping by

  I wish I could tell you that I personally picked up this piece of Kauri from a tell in New Zealand.  Alas, it was purchased from Woodcraft and I have to wonder if they realize what they were selling. This hook is made from THE oldest known workable wood (petrified wood might be older but it isn't workable as normal wood).  This wood is certified to be at least 35,000 years old.  Imagine.  The hook you'll be getting was growing in a tree before the ice age, when saber tooth tigers were stalking woolly mammoths.
  Actually Kauri tree descendants are still growing in New Zealand, but have been harvested to near extinction, and are no longer legally harvested.   Not so with the ancient buried Kauri trees.  But even those are getting rare.
    The tree that donated this wood was blown down or otherwise felled and buried in what might have been a tsunami, and the mineral conditions must have been such that the wood in this very hook was being  preserved in a workable form all during the time the pyramids were being built.  It was there, gracefully aging when Jesus was born.  Its humbling to think about.  You'll be holding a piece of wood from a tree that may have been alive and bending in the wind when the first cave paintings were being done. 
  This is one of the most uniquely beautiful woods I have worked with.  It has remarkable "chatoyance" , an iridescence that when finished appropriately has a depth that's hard to describe.  It's an understatement to say that his hook shimmers and the softness of the finish is truly amazing.
  I've yet to see a photograph that adequately captures chatoyant wood, and the photos you see are no exception.  New Zealanders recognize the shimmering beauty.  The call it "Whitebait" named after a shimmering fish. You'll just have to see for yourself.

  Please think about this before bidding.  This is a true collectors item.  This fact plus the nature of the wood  dictates that it be treated differently than a typical wood crochet hook.  Take a look at the enlarged picture of the heel end.  The photo is enlarged at least 8 times actual size and it's still difficult to see just how closely the annular rings are spaced.  This is extremely dense wood.  But it's almost the lightest woods you'll find short of Balsa.  It's not as soft as Balsa but much softer than usual crochet hook woods.  That means that while the hook will work amazingly well, it is not strong and will not suffer tight crochet or rough treatment
  As to care.  The hook should be stored separate from other hooks because the wood is soft and light. Cleaning shouldn't be done with  water, better to use a soft cotton cloth and maybe a little beeswax.  Or if you'd prefer, you can send it to me for that kind of work.
  As to use.  Once again, this hook is made to use, but  use should with natural soft yarns with careful, loose stitches to avoid any chance of breaking the head.
  Technically this hook is slightly over 7 1/8 inches long and is sized at 7mm (between a K and an L).  I have not marked the hook because I refuse to cover any part of the wood that has been waiting over 35 thousand years to be admired by human eye.  Besides it's just too pretty to mess up with my signature and size markings.  

And now for another hook of distinction......

  July 10, 2015 late afternoon 5.6 miles up the Deadman Creek road at Jimbo's REAL front porch, clouds were gathering while  Karol, some friends, and I were getting dinner ready.  Thunder echoed through our little canyon and we started wondering if we should get the kerosene lamps out.  We all cleared the floor several inches when a flash and cannon shot blasted a mere 40 yards from the cabin! After settling down and starting to breathe again,  we all went out to see if there was a fire or trees down.  Nothing was found out of the ordinary.  Next day Karol found this next to our access road.....

 This is what's left of the trunk of a little Hazelnut Bush that was growing between some towering fir trees.  What's amazing is the canopy of the firs almost block the sky above that little Hazelnut, but NONE of the firs were affected and you can see from the photo that the ground wasn't scorched.  How could a bolt of lightning thread it's way through those towering firs and hit that little Hazelnut?  Just the little Hazelnut?  We couldn't find any other damage whatsoever (you can see the greenery around the scorched trunk).  More than a little mystified, we were,  as were the forest rangers who had a look at it later.  Wonderous things happen up on the Crick.
 And this little Hazlenut, after a year to cure and a little help from Jimbo, donated this.....

Now I'm no mystic.... at least I don't think so..... but if there's such a thing as a magical crochet hook, this one's got the provenance.  Hazelnut wood is known by those in the mystical arts to have magic properties.  The wood is said to be one preferred for magic wands.  And Hazelnut in particular is selected for healing properties, gaining wisdom and poetic inspiration.  Add to all that: this is a lightning struck Hazelnut.  Any lightning struck tree is said to retain powerful magical properties.  Take a look at the detail photo and you'll see burned patches where the lightning bolt seared the wood.
  So here we have a magical crochet hook.  Think of the wondrous things it will inspire in your crochet!
Muggle wise it's a K (6.5mm) and is a newt's eyebrow shy of 7 1/4 inches long.

So off to the auction!

 We'll run the auction till  Thursday, October 13th and close on that date at 10pm Pacific Time.  Please send your bid via email to      ( with your bid amount.
I'll post bids as soon as possible (however I don't hang around the computer all the time, especially when I'm up on the Ranch).
If you are out-bid and would like to raise the bid, please increase the previous bid by a $5 minimum (done to eliminate penny increases at the last minute).
Tying bids will be resolved in favor of the earliest bid received.  I do charge postage now ($2.50 for US regular mail... more for foreign or speedy mailing and/or insurance).
I do take proxy bids if you prefer but again, tying proxy bids will be resolved in favor of the first received.
Thanks once again.  I appreciate everyone who drops by, bids or not.


Ancient Kauri Hook:
Barbara bids $40
Diana bumps it up to $45
Lulia bids $106
Diana ups it to $111

Lightning struck Hazelnut Hook:
Barbara bids $40
Diana with $45
Lulia bids $87
Diana bumps to $92

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