Little Acorn Furniture offers courses in Green Woodworking and rustic furniture making ranging from one to five days in duration. No experience is needed and families are welcome so come along and learn some new skills whilst having a great time.

Try something new suitable for all the family. You can experience traditional woodworking using methods and tools unchanged since the medieval period. Make your own furniture from local wood and experience life as a woodland craftsman with little acorn furniture near Clifford Bridge on the edge of Fingle wood.

  • Family “greenwood” experience
    Alasdair will take you through the basic principles of Green Woodworking and provide the knowledge, tools and materials needed to get you using a pole lathe. Turn as many items as you like using a variety of local hard woods and unlock the full potential of this ancient craft.
  • Introduction to pole lathing
    During this one or two day course, you will get to practice the principles of green woodworking: cleaving and shaping the wood using side axe and draw knife before turning on a pole lathe to produce a range of items - as long as it is round!
  • Simply stools
    This two-day course offers you the chance to produce a simple three or four legged stool with hard wood top and turned or draw knifed legs.
  • From tree to table
    This three day course gives you time to produce a table or bench with stretchered legs using more advanced techniques. The addition of stretchers between the legs allows you to make larger items with more refinement.
  • Table making course
    This four-day course gives you time to explore the intricacies of green wood furniture design to produce a dramatic and unique piece of furniture of your own design.
  • Chair making course
    Over this full four day course you will make and assemble a complete chair from local Ash and Beech. Choosing from one of two traditional designs you will be responsible for shaping all components and joining therm using traditional wedged mortice and tenon joints
  • Make your own shaving horse
    In order to make a traditional shaving horse you will need a pole lathe, in order to use a pole lathe a shaving horse is essential. Get around this catch 22 situation by making your very own shaving horse over two days in Alasdair's fully equipped Greenwood workshop.
  • One-to-one tuition
    Work and learn at your own pace - receive uninterrupted expert tuition in the art of green wood furniture making and have exclusive access to the range of hardwoods available in the workshop.

Course dates

2022 dates for spring and summer are shown below, please feel free to contact us directly to discuss courses next year. COVID has subtly changed the way we operate and it is now more than ever about your experience, enjoyment and safety.

Bookings can still be made by selecting to arrange your course at a later date.



For full details of each course including prices and to make your booking please go to the specific course page from the courses menu.

Courses are organized throughout the year and can be arranged to suit you if booking for a group of three or more.

Family “Greenwood” day and “One to one” tuition.

These days can be arranged exclusively to suit you and your family. Please contact us to arrange your course date!

Table Making Course, and Group bookings

Book exclusively on dates that suit you, contact us directly to arrange your course.

2022 DATES

One Day Course Dates, Introduction to pole lathing

Feb 19th – full

March 4th – full

April 9th – full

October 15th – 2 spaces

November 19th – 5 spaces

Two Day Course Dates, Simply Stools, Make your own Shaving Horse.

Feb 19th-20th – full

March 26th-27th – full

April 9th-10th – full

April 27th-28th – full

May 7th-8th – full

May 23rd-24th – full

July 23rd-24th – 1 space

September 13th-14th – full

October 4th-5th – 4 spaces

Three Day Course Dates, Tree to Table.

March 26th-27th-28th – full

April 27th-28th-29th – full

May 7th-8th-9th – full

May 23rd-24th -25th – full

July 23rd-24th-25th – 1 space

September 13th – 14th – 15th – full

October 8th – 9th – 10th – 3 spaces

Chair Making Course.

March 25th-28th – full

May 7th-10th – full

About the workshop

Little Acorn Furnitures Green Wood work shop has been developed in the Old Sheep Barn at Clifford Barton, which is located on the edge of the Dartmoor National Park. The Farm now hosts family holiday cottages and courses, as well as providing a home for rescued dwarf ponies.

Surrounded by beautiful Devon coutryside and the breathtaking Fingle Wood, the workshop provides a covered area where the courses can take place.  However, there is also a large outside area overlooking the Valley where we hope to enjoy the fantastic Devon sunshine!

What our customers say…

I completed the ‘build your own custom shaving horse’ in 2 days. A great course, well taught in a low key way with as much or as little help provided as required. I would recommend.

thumb Gordon Murrell

Amazing course, shaving horse creation in 2 days! Loved every aspect, pole lathing, drawknife, feathering. Alasdair and Simon make a great team and are great teachers, enthusiastic, passionate, if you want to get busy and start creating with green wood I highly recommend this course. In addition to the imparting the practical skills Alasdair also covers woodland conservation, the science of wood and numerous tips on tools and further reading, very comprehensive, it will get you hooked.

thumb Richard Shire

What a great weekend, I was there with a 17 year old boy that I care for and the experience was amazing. Jack did the two day stool making course and he loved it. Alastair and Simon where great at helping and explaining the process to Jack and made sure that Jack was involved in the whole weekend. It is a full on course and jack loved the hands on experience. He especially liked working on the lathes and produced a rolling pin and rounders bat. There were three other people on the course and Alastair and Simon where brilliant at including Jack throughout the two days. I cannot thank Alastair and Simon enough for such a great weekend and experience. And to see Jack's happy face when his stool was finished was a memory I shall never forget. Cheers guys, I shall be back to make my own stool.

thumb Gary Barnett

Thanks to Alastair and Simon for a brilliant three day course. Amazing location, excellent workshop and great teaching. Fantastic experience with traditional tools and my own unique table to take home. Highly recommended.

thumb Andrew Davey

My family and I recently spent an incredibly happy and gratifying time making a green wood table with Alasdair and his assistant, Simon. I cannot overstate what a special, stimulating and satisfying time it was - working together as a family; learning about the wood, the tools and the processes; and making a table which we will have forever and which will always remind us of that bonding time together. It was genuinely one of the most harmonious and fulfilling things we have ever done as a family and I would highly recommend it to anyone, however inexperienced. I have also never met two more gentle and patient teachers and craftsmen, with two more overdeveloped sets of forearms!

thumb Alice Morgan