Do you see it?  Did you notice it?  That one little change on my rolling pin wall?



That’s right.  It includes something other than a rolling pin now.  BUT, it’s still something handmade by Cattails Woodworking owner, Brenda Watts, who made a lot of the rolling pins hanging on my wall.  You may remember Brenda from such classics as The French Rolling Pin, The Acorn Button Box, or everyone’s favourite, the Flame Birch Cutting Block.

It’s an Art of Doing Stuff Cleaver Hook, handcrafted by Brenda.

Lemme tell you how it all happened.



I approached Brenda, an early advertiser on The Art of Doing Stuff, about doing a product together.  Something that would be appealing to both her Cattails Woodworking customers and my readers.

Something that was the perfect combination of Cattails and The Art of Doing Stuff.  Rustic, but elegant, beautiful but useful with the potential to be used as a weapon.  We agreed we should work together immediately.

That was 5 years ago.

Finally this summer we got our stuff together and came up with the idea for the Cleaver Hook.


O.K., we didn’t come up with the idea, Brenda did.  I mainly just screamed and yelled a lot and high fived my computer when she told me about this idea that she thought it might be a good for my readers.  FOR MY READERS???  It’s a good idea for EVERYONE.

By the way, in that photo above, the cleaver is sitting on top of my first artistic collaboration, the Rough Linen Proofing Cloth.

Brenda got to work on them right away and sent me a couple of prototypes based on the actual antique cleaver I use and keep in my own kitchen.


Around the middle of this summer I got a box in the mail with my first two cleaver prototypes in it.  I was in a HUGE rush to get out the door when it arrived because I had to get to my mother’s 81st birthday party.   So I just grabbed the box and brought it with me.  Just after we all checked our blood alcohol level with a gizmo from Costco and just before the Pavlova, I remembered the box and opened it right there in the middle of the party.

Everybody loved what was inside of it and I’m hoping you will too.

The first samples Brenda made were the exact proportions of my cleaver, but once they were made out of wood and shrunk down to a smaller size the cleavers looked a little bit off kilter.  Like they’d been through a funhouse mirror.  So we redesigned them so they would look right to the human eye as opposed to being proportionally exact to my Henry Boker cleaver.



Each cleaver has a a hole on the back so you can easily hang it on a screw. And that wood disk the cleaver is attached to is the exact right size for a hanger.



Have nowhere to hang your purse when you walk in the door?

Leave it to Cleaver.

Have nowhere to store your reusable shopping bags when you bring in groceries?

Leave it to Cleaver.

Want a place to hang your apron?  That sweater you always throw on when you’re just running out to put out the garbage?  A smooth, glowing, warm piece of wood to make you smile every morning when you look at it?

Leave it to Cleaver.


(reuseable imitation suede shopping bag pictured, made by me for me … sorry, none for sale)



I love and use things Brenda has made every single day in my house.  I tuck a little chicken feather into my carved acorn box, or I stir my oatmeal on cold winter mornings with her spurtle.  I know she makes beautiful, useful things and that is why I wanted to partner with her.

We wanted to bring The Art of Doing Stuff readers a really beautiful, really unique gift item. Either for yourself, or for someone on your gift list.

Not thinking about Christmas or Hanukah gifts yet?  Yeah. That make sense.  I mean, you still have 4 whole days until  The Christmas Pledge. Yes, really.

So finally after 5 years in the making (kind of), and a lifetime of not knowing where to hang your hat, you can now Leave it to Cleaver.  In light birch or dark walnut!


Have a good weekend!



  1. Kim from Milwaukee says:

    Karen, have you seen this? I thought of you immediately….could be a fun little project! https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tBiIbSznolo mini cleaver

  2. Brenda told me about this collaboration. Genius! Now I just need to figure out where to put it. Useful and seriously fun. :)

  3. Benjamin says:

    I would love to have a tote bag with the cleaver logo to take with me shopping the farmers market every Thursday. And maybe a surprise cleaver wall hook hidden inside? You’re a dream, my little doing it all angel. ((hugs))

    • Karen says:

      LOL. Well, maybe for Christmas if you’re a good ladyboy. ~ karen!

      • Benjamin says:

        What’s this?… What’s happening?…. Jihad… I know you’re hoping for pics to prove it, aren’t you Karen?! Better watch what you wish for, because if Hillary doesn’t win the presidency I’m moving to your neighborhood… could be fun though to have someone to bedazzle a fencepost with and tease our wigs sky-high with a powerdrill paddle stir fitted with an afro comb, among other crazy fun ladyboy/sandpapersister fun times. Scared ya didn’t I? Happy Halloween !!! ((hugs))

  4. Elaine says:

    You are so kind, Karen, to be offering free shipping to your fan club! While I can’t seem to find a suitable spot (yet) for the cleaver in my condo, I am seriously looking over the many BEAUTIFUL bread/cheese boards as gifts. The wood is so gorgeous!

  5. Kathleen HARTZELL says:

    I am always telling friends how cleaver you are…..wait? Is that the right way to spell it??

    I started my Christmas shopping this week. Yep, packed in sweet gifts for the ladies who have feet that need to be cozy. Nobody can have too many socks, right?

  6. Linda says:

    Is this just a “shopping” web ? I thought I was going to learn “The Art of Doing Stuff” not buying stuff. Maybe I have missed something.

    • Karen says:

      I’m sorry Linda, would you like a refund? ~ karen!

      • Linda says:

        A refund???

      • Penny says:

        Ooh, I just like you even more for that teeny hint of bee-atch! Did your lip curl as you typed, and your nostrils flare ever so slightly? Naah, doesn’t matter, that’s how I’m going to imagine it.

      • Karen says:

        I did not, lol. A bit of an eye roll maybe after writing almost 1,000 posts showing people how to do stuff. And not shit, useless stuff. Really GOOD stuff, lol. Sometimes people just don’t understand this is an actual business. And I have an actual mortgage to pay. ~ karen!

    • Jan in Waterdown says:

      “Missed something”?? You betcha! Check out all (well most) of Karen’s previous posts and you’ll see cooking and gardening and installing toilets and making cool outdoor furniture and crafts and raising chickens and and . . .
      I could go on and on, but hopefully you get my drift. ?

  7. Becky Couch says:

    I want a BAG and Love Suzannelh’s idea of cheese board! (And leave it to Sandra Brooks to give her daughter the COOLEST present EVER!)

  8. SuzanneLH says:

    I want a bigger one for a cheese board. ?

  9. Lynne Burns says:

    So completely wonderful….. But, uh …. I WANT THAT SHOPPING BAG

    yes. That was said yelling.

    Could that please happen sometime?

  10. Sandra Brooks says:

    Ordered a Cleaver (genius!) & a Pinafore from Rough Linen as Christmas presents for my daughter. Thanks SO much!! I know she will love & cherish them both!!

  11. Cyndi L. Collinge says:

    Dear Karen, I’ve been a fan of yours since I first came upon your stories about your chickens.( I’m a chicken person too. ) This will sound strange, but, I’m in Port Alberni, B.C. and am looking for “red wigglers” ( worms ), to use in my composting. Would you by any chance know where I could get some? I promise to give them a good “home”. Thanks for your time, Cyndi.

  12. Mary W says:

    I bought your wonderful cleaver! But I have to say 4 DAYS LEFT? What happened to 2016?

  13. Ronda says:

    yes, yes, yes to the bag! Maybe your next collaboration?

  14. Meg says:

    OMG The Christmas Pledge already!!! But it’s still September!!

    ……obviously I probably need the pledge this year more than I have in past years!
    Can’t wait! Especially with all these nice things to get for presents!

  15. Lez says:

    Ok, can we leava da cleava now please! In South African Rands that is about R630 plus shipping! That is about my entire Christmas budget! It’s beautiful, & we are officially jealous of the value of your real money in a 1st world country…so can we talk about chickens or something now please! :)

  16. Melissa says:

    SO super excited about my dark walnut Leave it to Cleaver coming soon!!!!! And SO thankful you paid for my shipping! My new house is being built as we speak and I know the perfect spot in my new kitchen for it! I plan to hang and display my aprons on it. Woohoo! Must go shopping for rolling pins now…..
    p.s. that bag thing should be a thing now, oh the many uses…..

    • Laurie says:

      Ok Melissa, I have to ask, how did you get your shipping paid? Did I miss something?

      • Karen says:

        Hi Laurie! I offered the cleaver first to my subscribers (the most engaged subscribers actually) and gave them free shipping. :) It’s one of the perks of subscribing to my emails. ~ karen!

      • Laurie says:

        Well, aren’t you clever!! I will now run over and subscribe, even if I have to pay shipping this time, it’s worth it…..so beautiful!

      • Melissa says:

        It pays to be engaging!! Thank you for doing that for your readers, it was awfully sweet!!

  17. Nancy Blue Moon says:

    It’s beautiful Karen…maybe after I get the tax payments finished in May I could order me one for my birthday…You know people are going to be begging for that bag now…

  18. Lynn says:

    Love your cleaver Karen.

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