The scale and utility of my projects have a great range. Pragmatic need generally drives my wood working projects. Designers, talk about intentionality and how an object expresses some essence, but in wood working, I find design and engineering needs converge. While I am working on a project in the building phase, I am motivated by I how I think people are going to love to touch and look at the finished product. Bringing together form and function, design and engineering is why I love wood as a medium. Feeling the wood and imagining how others will feel the same thing defines my target level of performance when crafting. For my more pragmatic projects, like designers, I want the utility of the object to excel to the point where people don’t think about the object any more, it just exists and looks like it belongs in its space.


Custom built-ins

Bathroom Built in.

Bathroom built in shelf. Shelves are Douglas Fir finished with Spar-urethane while backing and siding are Birch plywood finished with Polyurethane.

Book wedges

Book Wedge

A wedge like shelf for books. This one has art work with done with a scroll saw on the end.

Extensions to existing furniture

Counter-top extension

Bathroom shelf — Polyurethane over 3/4 inch Birch plywood. Leading edge finished with a 45 degree miter.

Tuck-up drawers

Tuck-up drawers.

Mounted between joists. Credit: Hugh Paterson III

Towel rack

Towel rack.

Bathroom towel rack in pine. Credit: Hugh Paterson III

Mounted shelves

Fireplace mantel

Fireplace mantel.

Fireplace mantel. (and I did the stone work too!) Credit: Hugh Paterson III


From coffee tables with places for kids things, to rebuilding missing parts for IKEA tables — tables are fun.


I’ve built two work tables (work benches). One is sort of a standing desk/table for my computers. While the other was a work bench for my brother’s garage, with space for shop-vac and tools underneath it. The computer table is custom designed for the set of computers I run and has space for the custom rack mounted server cart underneath it.

Toys, Games, and Play-things

My favorite things to make are small fun filling objects. My first “big” project was the chess set in 9th grade. My dad made me a truck for my second Christmas, I made my daughter a truck for her second Christmas. An unfinished dice box. And a box for our hand holds for the climbing wall. I repaired a broken dice box made out of walnut for my brother. And then I made my own dice box with a black and red stripes out of felt. After moving back to the USA from France, I built knot boards for my kids to learn knots in the car on the drive across the USA. From time to time I need to repair the Brio train tracks.s

Climbing Wall

In 2019 I built this seven foot high wall for my daughter to climb on from Birch and Douglas Fir. Two years later I built the crack climbing volume ( Bullet wood, Red Oak, and Padauk) and hand holds ( Big Leaf Maple). At age three and a half we started climbing on basalt columns.

Climbing Wall 2

In 2021 I built a 10 foot high wall for my nephews in their garage.

Climbing Wall 3

In 2022 I built a seven foot high wall for my daughter to climb on from Birch and Western Maple.

Decks, Floors, Fences and Garden Features

Cedar deck. Later a Red Wood planter was added (circa 2015). Hickory engineered hardwood flooring. A metal and wood fence (2019).


I love five panel shaker style doors. In 2019 I tried my hand at a pair of cabinet doors before I anticipate making the necessary doors for my home.

Musical instruments

Two unfinished Ukuleles. (I also somewhere along the line repaired a Ukulele for a friend.)


My first wood shop project ever — the cutting board from 9th grade (1997). (Although I had a set of chisels in grade school that I made a boat out of…) Somehow I managed to make two of these. The first one I put an edge on so that one could slide the cutting board under the thing to be cut. The second one I made with rounded edges. This is a picture of the one with rounded edges. In 2022 I started making cutting boards to sell. The first two to come out of the shop were walnut and spalted maple.

More recent cutting boards

In 2022 I made about 14 cutting boards to sell. I made a design pattern and then started to play around with it. I then finished them with a mineral oil and bees wax combo which I learned about on YouTube.

Hugh Paterson III
Hugh Paterson III
Collaborative Scholar

I specialize in bespoke research at the intersection of Linguistics, Law, Languages, and Technology; specifically utility and life-cycle management for information products in these spaces.