2020 Midwest Penturners Gathering
April 24 and 25, 2020 - Chicago / Schaumburg Illinois

Key Dates

Shirt Orders End
April 1, 2020

Personalized Mug Orders End
April 1, 2020

Meal Orders End
April 10, 2020

Online Registration Ends
April 20, 2020

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Contests Update

Click Here For
Turning For Troops Update

Demonstrations (Subject To Change)

Women in Turning Community gathering
Linda Ferber and Marie Anderson

This session will be a meet and greet to connect with other women in turning and build your support community. Attendees will be updated on current WIT happenings and scheduled events. Plan to bring a pen that you have created. Women only community building and support session. Pre-registration for the WIT hands on event will only be available during this event.

The Best Finish for Your Pens: Subjective Observations (Fake News) vs. Objective Data (Real Science)
Steve Wohlgemuth

If you ask 100 pen turners how to finish a pen you will get 250 answers. It’s time to apply real science to answer the question. Using proven scientific methodology along with macro photography, I will hopefully be able to prove what really gives us that magical finish we are all striving for.

Women in Turning hands on event 90 minute session
Linda Ferber and Marie Anderson

Description: Hands On event - Learn to turn and embellish a whimsical one-of-a-kind folk art style pen. Each participant will leave with at least one pen that they have created in this session. - Short demos followed by hands on activity - Folk art style stick pens turned then embellished with marbling technique. - Attendees will be split into two groups - one group to do pen turning while the other works on marbling once finished with first activity, each group will switch to the opposite . All attendees will leave with something (either pen body or paper or both) that they marbled to be finished at home Attendee to supply: dust masks, safety glasses

Color Casting
Fred Wissen

Fred will take you through the world of casting. Equipment choices, material options, and step by step "how to" cast. A must see.

Fred plans to cover resins, colorants and everything needed to cast. Will be covering both color and clear casting in that period.

Photographing Your Art
Julane Johnson

Pictures make the difference. On your website, on your e-commerce site, jury selection. You need great pictures. Julane will walk you through the set up and layout to get great pictures. You do not need to be a professional photographer to get something out of this one.

Turning In The Dark
Ray Wright

I am a totally blind woodturner and I will demonstrate the adaptive ways I make a pen without sight. I will cover everything from cutting, drilling , gluing and trimming the blanks, The tools I use for measuring,marking and turning the barrels and how I finish and assemble the pens completely by feel.

By attending my demonstration, my goal is to show woodturners with perfect sight or those with vision that " isn't what it use to be " will no longer fear giving up their passion (and lathes) down the road. You will be encouraged and realize that your turning lives are not over, just need adapting.

Scalloped Blanks
Chris Labedz

Want to differentiate yourself as a pen maker. The blanks can do it. And this is more than just cut, glue and turn. You will understand how to make blanks that no one else does. After you just provide the creativity.

From Beginner To Professional In 90 Minutes
Mark Dreyer

All skill levels are welcome – Everyone starts with making a traditional wooden pen. But it does not need to end there. The key to the process is challenging yourself to do something new and branch out. We will take wood to a new level.

Part 1:
Topics include the entire process from blank selection or creation, drilling, gluing, turning, finishing, and assembly. We will look at numerous finishing techniques and the challenges of each – from simple buffing to CA and many in between. Working with all the basic tools and jigs used in the process.

Part 2:
Now taking the wood pen to the next steps – coloring, bleaching and segmenting wood. We will discuss the different techniques to make your work standout above the rest.

Part 3:
Turning alternative materials. Acrylic Blanks, Acrylester Blanks, Deer Antler, Coffee Beans, Mother Of Pearl, Aluminum, Polymer Clay, Snake Skins, Half Wood / Half Plastic.

There are numerous steps to creating the perfect pen. Your tools and techniques are just as important as that perfect kit or piece of wood .

Kitless Next Steps
Robert Nelson

So, you want to make a Kitless Pen? You have the basic tools. Let's make a pen from scratch. I will walk you thru the steps to understanding how these pens are put together. Covering the types of material used is the starting point. Then, coming up with a basic design, starting from the nib and working your way out from there, to the technical applications of using the tools you have, to whether or not you need to put a finish on your pen. This is going to FUN.

Folk art, special effects and more - 90 minute session
Linda Ferber and Marie Anderson

Whimsical stick pen Folk Art. Turn your simple stick pens into one-of-a-kind pieces of folk art. Learn basic turning for kit-less pens and be inspired while learning different options for embellishing your kit-less pens including marbling

All Abount Casting
John Underhill

If you’ve ever wanted to make a cool color swirled blanks, have a custom logo or photograph pen, or maybe a hybrid wood, pinecone or something new mixed with resin, then this is for you. No two casters do everything the same. Even with using the same material, results can vary based on how you do what you do from mixing, pouring, to cutting. My goal is to give you the understanding to try and the inspiration to find what works for you.

This is designed for everyone from beginner to experienced, this is everything you need to know about casting to get you creating your own one of kind blanks.

Topics Covered:

Setting up your own casting area – practical and safety
Understanding resin types and selecting the best for your project
Selecting the best mold for the job – vertical vs block – commercial vs recycled
Essential tools and utensils needed
Usable materials - where to find them- preparation prior to pouring
Resin handling – storing, mixing, and pouring
What works for me, my supplies, resources, and inspirations

Sales And Marketing
Ed Brown

Many penturners “retire” after about 2 years. Why? They have already given pens to all their family, friends and passers-by!! Not much point in making them, if there is no where to go with the finished products!!

Ed sold pens at Art&Craft shows from 1995 to 2010. Thousands of pens! Now, he is sharing some of his methods in person-to-person selling. How to get people into your booth, how to start a conversation that will lead into discussing pens. Pricing strategy for pens, focusing on “gift” market.

In addition, the presentation will talk about selling on the internet on your own website or Etsy or any other “store framework”. We cover, briefly, staging your products and taking pictures, as well as creating persuasive text. So, if you want to get beyond, “Wanna buy a pen?”, spend an hour or so with Ed. Bring your questions!!

The Face Of Your Craft Business; How To Get It Online
Steven Margison

We will look at the basic steps to getting a business presence online with a website name, email address, website page, credit card merchant account, and Point of Sale and inventory control. Orientation will be for "everyman", not just computer gurus.

Let's talk about figured wood
Rich Coers

The title says it all. Stop "just cut it here" and learn to look at the blank. Get the best color, figure and texture from that blank. A great way to differentiate yourself.

Sharpening HSS toolsl
Rich Coers

Sharp tools are a must for turning. Most people just put the tool to the grinder and hope. Rich will take you through all the steps to get a perfect finish on that tool. Sharp as can be. This is a must see for those using HSS.

Bending Jig For Embedding Objects
Dick Sing

Ever wonder how you get those objects bent to fit the tube. Dick will walk you through the process of making yourself a jig to get that perfect bend. And there is a rumor that the jig he makes will be given away. Just sayin ...

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