Workshop 01

Blue Swallow Designs is a small business I started in March of 2017 building little wooden garden ornaments, giftware, furniture and other assorted household goods. Everything is made by hand; I have a few machines that get used for some of the time consuming jobs but good ol’ hand tools feature pretty heavily in most stages of production.

My preference is to use recycled or scrap timber and especially pallets; they tend to be well weathered and the timber used in them is generally not considered to be up to construction standard. This suits me perfectly as ‘construction standard’ timber is quite boring; it tends to have straight grain and is easily worked whereas the timber used in pallets can have twisted grain, knots, sap wood, cracks – all sorts of problems – which make it harder to work but far more interesting to look at.

Although I use timber for everything some designs are painted and this is where I use plywood; it handles being painted better than most of the recycled timber I scavenge. In addition to recycled wood I also use some of Tasmania’s specialty timbers but I prefer to source mill ends and off-cuts where possible. Most of the things I build don’t need long lengths so shorter bits tend to be easier for me to handle and off-cuts, in particular, can have some really nice features.

The designs are all my own work; I get inspiration from lots of different places but everything gets drawn up, prototyped and tested by me. It is important that things look nice but, for me, it is equally important that they are functional. I can do custom orders or any of the designs on this site can be customised to suit; typically this is where I would use specialty timbers like Huon Pine, Sassafras, Myrtle, Blackwood, Celery Top Pine, etc.

Should you have any questions or would like to inquire further about the products made by Blue Swallow Designs please contact me via email at:

To find out about purchasing any of our products check out the Store page or go straight to our Etsy online store; any sales queries or custom order requests are best directed to Isabel at:

For some background information check out my First Blog Post.

Steve Brookes