Arnold Woodworker Carves Out Time For Growing Hobby


For Mike Boone, a summer job during high school sparked an interest that has grown into a gratifying hobby today. When he was 16, the Arnold resident worked for a carpenter and discovered the art of woodworking. He tucked this newfound interest in his back pocket until 2017, when he began to work with live-edge wood. His first project was a custom bench fashioned from salvaged slabs that Boone finished, planed, sanded and cut to size before welding on custom legs that he made from scratch.

Since delving into his woodworking hobby seven years ago, Boone has remained committed to sourcing salvaged wood otherwise destined for landfills. He gets logs of various types from area tree companies and acquaintances having trees removed and transforms them into unique pieces ranging from charcuterie boards to holiday-themed trinket trays.

He’s not too particular about the types of wood he receives, though he does have a couple of favorites with which to work. Boone shared that he loves black walnut and different oaks. “Ambrosia maple is always fun,” he said, explaining that the wood is named after the ambrosia beetle, which leaves trails of fungi as it bores into trees that discolor the wood, creating a unique and intricate pattern in each tree.

Many of the items Boone creates, which he offers for sale online, reflect his personal interests and passions. He loves coffee, so he makes coffee-measuring scoops of various sizes. He enjoys cigars and has been busy producing intricate custom cigar trays. Butcher-block Maryland flags and wedding cake knives with engraved scrollwork in the handles are among the items available through his small business, East Coast Timber.

Over the years, as Boone has developed his woodworking skills, his methodology has become more complex. His garage workshop was initially outfitted with hand tools – saws, sanders and a planer – but now includes a CNC router that enables Boone to dream up and create most anything anyone asks of him. The machine uses software that converts computer-rendered artwork into precise and intricate finished products.

Boone said that preparing and designing a project can take hours before the router ever comes into contact with wood. His tech-savvy wife often assists with the computer work, and when they come across questions they can’t troubleshoot themselves, they turn to the helpful online community of woodworkers found in Facebook groups. “It’s a big learning curve, but it’s fun,” Boone remarked of CNC work.

Not only is woodworking fun for him, but it’s also a stress reliever for the young dad, who has a 2-year-old daughter and two rescued Dachshunds at home. Boone said he devotes about 15 hours each week to his craft, and that he finds listening to music and transforming fresh concepts into finished products is peaceful for him.

Boone indicated that people with an interest in woodworking shouldn’t shy away from it for a lack of experience. “You can start from scratch, from a passion or an idea,” he said. “You don’t have to have any professional background; you can learn as you go. That’s what I did, and I am still learning.”

To view some of Boone’s work, go to


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