Spalted Birch Burl Bowl (20SF1) SOLD

Spalted Birch Burl Bowl (20SF1) SOLD

dimensions: 20" x 14" x 5.5" ht, 7/16" wall thickness



  • Detailed Info about bowl

    This large bowl was turned from an old birch burl that was purchased from loggers in Hovland, MN.   The trimmed burl, mounted on a lathe, is shown above along with the original burl and the cut burl. This burl was old with a lot of decay and missing most of its bark. Turning it was very difficult and required a lot of CA glue to harden and stabilize the soft and decayed areas. I nearly gave up, especially since there was a decayed-out crack that had to be filled and glued. You can see the dark line that runs from the edge to near the center of the bowl. Many of the grain lines were also partly open from decay. These were also filled and sealed. The spalting patterns and colors are amazing and really unusual for birch burl, giving me extra energy (needed) to complete the job. I still had little hope that this bowl would turn out OK after drying and sanding. The sanding process was also very tedious since all of the issues (grain cracks and decayed voids) were still visible and required more filling and CA glue. I spent two full days sanding and repairing this bowl. The final result is quite amazing and unusually beautiful. The colors (black, brown, and golden) are stunning and the spalting lines are twisting and winding around the cloud like patterns. There is also this scary image of a multi-armed snake like demon in the bottom of the bowl. The spiked head of the snake demon is actually the center of the tree, a knot, with its appropriate spikes. The bowl was turned end grain. The original burl was cut into two similar halves (shown in the images). The other one was not turned since I was so tired and frustrated with this one. It is nicely serving as firewood! I am glad I did not give up on this bowl. It is very beautiful and has a good story. It also has a stunning live edge shape. This bowl was turned from old wet burl wood and dried for several months. The bowl was turned using handheld tools on a lathe, dried for several months, and sanded to 400 grit. The bowl was sealed with two coats of tung oil, hand sanded after each coat, and finished with a buffed thin coat of beeswax and walnut oil. This finish is considered food safe so it can be used for displaying dry food like fruit or bread, but not for serving wet food. It would be a great center piece on a large table. All of the repairs in this bowl are completely stable and sealed. This bowl looks more like a maple burl from its colors and grain figuring. Old spalted birch can fool you. This bowl is very unusual and special. 


    All my bowls are can be returned for a full refund if you are unsatisfied for any reason within 60 days. You must only pay the return shipping.

  • Laminated Info Card

    All of my bowls come with a laminated card with images of the bowl and burl, a complete description of the bowl and making process, and the artist's bio on the back side. There is no price on the card so it can be used if the bowl is given as a gift.


Artistic lathe turned wood bowls from Lake Superior area

©2017 by Lou Pignolet. Proudly created with

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