Alf Sharp is the National Speaker for the September meeting of RWS. Alf will give a talk on his work on Friday evening and give a demonstration workshop on Saturday (more info below).

Alf is a master furniture maker from Woodbury, Tennessee. With a strong focus on period furniture, Alf works in what he refers to as the “old-world manner, one piece at a time, and no compromises are made in materials or workmanship.” Alf is a master of high and low relief carving, inlay, marquetry, and French polishing. In 2008 Alf received the prestigious Cartouche Award from the Society of American Period Furnituremakers.

Alf concentrates on museum-quality, one-of-a-kind furniture, primarily in the 18th century American style. Also, he works in 19th and 20th century historical styles, as well as designing and building a number of pieces that merge traditional values and proportions with contemporary idioms and exotic woods.

His work has been featured in Colonial Homes magazine, Southern Living magazine, the book Architecture of the Old South, Fine Woodworking magazine, Woodwork magazine, the book The Tennessee Sampler, Historic Preservation magazine, Furniture Studio 3 and other publications. In addition, he has taught a number of courses and seminars in his field and demonstrates at various historical festivals.

Alf’s Friday evening lecture (September 20th) will focus on the scope of his work, but with an emphasis on the extensive work he did for the Hermitage, Andrew Jackson’s home. He will also talk about the experience of working for historic houses.

Alf’s Saturday workshop (September 21st) will focus on a number of techniques, with a heavy emphasis on hand tools. He will focus on a variety of ways to make handtool use easy and efficient. Included will be mortise and tenon joinery, rabbets and dados, dovetails (using a router for part of the process), and a fairly unorthodox method of cutting cabriole legs. He will also include a variety of tips on layout throughout the workshop. And, if time permits, will include some information on hammer veneering.

The cost of this workshop is $55 (First year RWS membership free with registration for a national speaker workshop).

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More information about Alf and his work can be found on his website:


Non-members are welcome to attend monthly meetings free of charge. Non-members receive a free membership when they register for their first workshop.

Our Friday meetings and lectures begin at 7:45 in Basil Hall on the St. John Fisher College campus. More information about the location of our meetings and directions are available here.

More general information about the nature and format of our meetings and lectures is available here.