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  • New to Intarsia

    Hello everyone. I am new to this forum as well as Intarsia. I have been scrolling about 4 years and really enjoy the satisfaction of completing a project and displaying it for all to see. I have never tried Intarsia, but have always been awed but the level of detail and the reality involved. I haven't selected my first project yet. So many beautiful projects to consider but even the easy ones look intimidating.

    I am looking for advice on where to get the exotic woods and colors that is used. As i understand it, these are natural wood colors. Best I can do in my town is oak or poplar.

    I appreciated any advice you all can give and I am looking forward to posting my first project with you all.

  • #2
    Welcome to the forum and "The Dark Side" also called intarsia. You're going to have a lot of fun and meet quite a few folks here who are very well known in intarsia circles and who have a lot of experience to share.

    Yes, we choose woods for their natural colors. You will find that poplar is very often used for green, aspen for white, both of which are usually available at one of the big box stores, usually Lowes. As for the more exotic woods, there are a lot of online sources that can provide most of them. Ocooch Hardwoods is popular as is The Handsome Woodman. A lot of folks like Jeffries Lumber in Knoxville, TN. They are very willing to help you find the woods you want and will ship them, however, they don't have an elaborate website so you need to call them or send email. There are many others around, but these are the ones I use.

    There are some beginner intarsia challenges available in the Sticky Section of the Intarsia area on this forum. You should have fun with some of those projects.



    • #3
      Welcome to Intarsia. Do you have any furniture manufactures or cabinet makers around there or in Reno? They often have scraps of some exotics Also, you might want to check for flooring companies. Sometimes they have scraps of exotics from contract jobs.

      Although most of the cabinets are made of veneered MDF, the cabinet door & drawer panels are usually solid wood.
      The good woodworker does not craft the wood for honor. He uses his craft to honor the wood.


      • #4
        Welcome to our world, just be warned once you try it your hooked. Go to my homepage at the link below and try the e-book as a project, it's free and will walk you through step by step. I also have a link to a lot of wood suppliers.
        Bruce F. Worthington 2 free e-books on Intarsia patterns
        Chat Room
        e-mail [email protected]

        You never stop learning..


        • #5
          I came across some logs from an apple tree a neighbor cut down. Great wood for intarsia. Many different colors in that one tree. Great looking grain. I just sold a large horse head intarsia I made with it and a little poplar.
          Hegner Polymax- 3,Hegner Multimax-3,
          "No PHD, just a DD 214"


          • #6
            Hi Hornet,

            I'm new to intarsia too, but old to woodworking. I am just using pine for my intarsia to start with. Pine is nice because it is cheap and you can make a lot of mistakes with it and just make replacement pieces as needed without a loss of valuable wood. Pine also has a pronounced grain which you can use to good advantage with intarsia work. It is also easy to color with acrylics using a paint medium that turns it into a stain. The results look almost as good as tropical woods if you stick to colors that can be found in natural trees.

            Like everyone else I love the different colored woods, but I can't find a lot here in Norway due to import restraints. So when I can find it and use it I want to make sure that my skills warrant the outlay. It is also worth mentioning that the saw and sanding dust from many tropical hardwoods can cause serious allergic reactions, even for some who take all the safety precautions against them. Not to worry too much, but well worth knowing about.

            Good luck with your intarsia work. I hope you find it as enjoyable as I have.



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