Category Archives: The Carpenter’s Shop

where I work

So, I’ve been putting a lot of time and energy into my part-time job at The Carpenter’s Shop, and I have to keep a constant watch on balancing that with the Jam Tarts side of my life.  I’ve made some excellent contacts out in the winelands of Paarl and Franschoek, and the orders are starting to flow in.

On Mandela Day, on 18 July, we were visited by the staff of go2Africa, and they put together a great video afterwards:  I thought I’d show it to you here so you can see where I work.  My best friend Karen is in it, she’s the social worker.  She specially did her nails that day!

My favourite bit is the guy at the end in the yellow anorak.


a bit of glass

Scuffling through one of the store rooms at work last week, I came across….

CarpentersShop 025        CarpentersShop 024

STUFF !!!!!! And we all know how much I love stuff, right!

A couple of years ago, one of the projects undertaken at The Carpenter’s Shop was glass-cutting.  Apparently it went really well for a while but circumstances and people changed, and so did the focus.  The bottles have been gathering dust ever since, and so have the recycled items. Until now, baby.

glass 2

Green glass planter – put some small stones in the bottom, add soil, pop in your cuttings, press down nice and tight to eliminate air pockets, and dot a few pretty glass drops on top. Water very lightly once a week (the stones at the bottom will prevent root rot, unless you over-water).

glass 1

vase 1

vase blue 1

Vases from wine bottles.  Simple and perfect. And Valentine’s Day is coming up, so a girl can never have too many. Vases, that is. For all the flowers. You know, that she’ll receive. From all her secret admirers.  Just saying.

So, as we’re gearing up for our first market day at Kirstenbosch on 23 February, I’m thinking….let’s sell these as well. No-brainer.  R10 per littlie and R20 per vase should see the table being cleared.

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Sunday evening

Thank you so much for all your encouraging comments about me working for The Carpenter’s Shop.  It really does feel like such a positive undertaking, and I’m pretty sure I’ll be taking away just as much as I give (if not more), in terms of energy and enthusiasm.


“Education is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world.”

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and now for something completely different

So, here’s my news:  The Carpenter’s Shop in Cape Town has a new Marketing Manager. And it’s me.  I start officially in January (but actually I’ve already started …because there’re a thousand things to do, and because I can’t wait!)

The Carpenter’s Shop is a non-profit, public-benefit organisation that offers rehabilitation services, training and accommodation to people in need so that they can re-integrate into society.  It is committed to providing academically-disadvantaged people with skills that will help them achieve independence.

The Carpenter's Shop premises at 14a Roeland Street, Cape Town

The Carpenter’s Shop premises at 14a Roeland Street, Cape Town (you can just catch sight of the cable car station at the top of Table Mountain in the background)

After a 3-month training period, the trainees are already producing awesome wooden items from bookcases, wine crates and shelving to breadboards, benches and storage boxes.  This is where I come in.

wine boxes. or juice. nah, wine.

wine boxes. or juice bottles? nah, wine.

mezze boards

bread boards

awesome branding




crates and stool

Yes, there’s a Plan. Yes, I’m excited. Yes, I’m totally going to love this challenge, and working with the amazing people I’ve met there.

And in case you were wondering, this blog – Nice Piece of Work – will not be about The Carpenter’s Shop  (Nice Piece of Work will always be ONLY ABOUT ME,  heh!)   TCS will have its own blog very shortly, which I am of course hoping you will all be interested in subscribing to…

And in the meantime, for more information, please check out the TCS facebook page and the website.

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