“My wood shop is my sanctuary. Designing handcrafted wooden pens is a labor of love.”
What makes Rochelle’s pens especially unique, is that she recognizes how everyone holds a writing instrument differently. The more shapes she develops, the more options she provides for you to fall in love with one of her pens (or mechanical pencils) that will fit your grip perfectly!
Come see her at the Eagle Saturday Market.
Process & History
Each pen is individually handcrafted to follow the flow of the grain, or the mood of the artist, making every pen one-of-a-kind. The full process takes nearly a week to complete:
- First the wood is measured, (or trimmed, glued, and pressed – for more ornate designs) and then cut into two small wood blocks, called pen blanks.
- The blanks are drilled so that a brass tube can be glued inside. After rough-sanding each brass tube, they are covered in glue and individually hand-turned into the center of the wooden pen blank. The blanks are set aside to dry / cure for a day.
- Each blank must be “barrel-trimmed” by hand to remove excess glue and wood.
- Now the fun part! The blanks are ready to be designed on the lathe.
- After sanding, a four step sealant process is applied to protect and waterproof each piece. This maintains a natural finish, with the exception of dyed pieces.
- Finally, a press is used to incorporate the hardware, and the pen is complete.
As she creates, she thinks of Michelangelo’s perspective ~
“. . . a pure work of sculpture, by definition – is one that is cut, not cast or modeled – and should retain so much of the original form...”
Much like her writing, she believes that as an artist, she is merely the instrument of the muses. And anyone who loves working in a wood shop, understands when she claims she’s addicted to her craft.
Rochelle finds working in her shop to be a therapeutic practice from the focus and intensity demanded by writing, and sometimes, by life. More importantly, it is also a way to remain close to her father who was an incredible carpenter. Where she was once “daddy’s little helper” – she now has her very own wood shop, complete with a picture of her Pop, in his wood shop, nailed up on her wall.
“After I finish a piece I hear him say, ‘I’m proud of you, Sissy,’ as he smiles down at me. The two of us had an unbreakable, unconditional love for each other. Designing pens became a way to share a piece of our magic with the rest of the world.”
One writer’s review
My friend, Rochelle Cunningham, is an extremely talented author with an incredible side business. She makes high-end wooden pens. In many ways, she’s my mentor. She shows me how to act with grace.
I love these pens. Once I used them, I decided I would only use her pens to sign my books. They’re that good.
Newest Edition to the Woodworking Collection
Contact Rochelle to order yours today! Special orders are accepted.