Holland Bowl Mill – Michigan Vacation
Holland Bowl Mill turned out to be another favorite and souvenir stop. We all bought our favorite bowl, OK my mother in law and I may have each bought more than one!
When we walked into the store, we were immediately greeted. This business has been in the family since 1926 when it started out making wooden shoes. We were invited to watch a short video of a segment that was featured on TV. We were then invited to take a factory tour.
All of the bowls are made completely by hand along with other unique items.
Holland Bowl Mill is one of the last production bowl mills in America, all handmade solid hardwood bowls and utensils of the highest quality.
We think the large bowl with the gems is a fruit bowl, allowing air to flow under the fruit.
They had beautiful cutting and charcuterie boards.
There were many gift items as well.
This started our tour.
All of their bowls are made from hardwood logs of beech, maple, cherry, walnut or red oaks.
All of the wood is harvested from forests throughout Michigan and the Midwest.
The company has zero waste even selling the cut out bowl wood, called skulls, as planters.
Leftover wood scraps and sawdust are used to make composite wood products and for horse bedding. Check out the size of the chainsaw!
Each skilled artisans create only one part of each product.
We watched as this man made three bowls from one chunk of wood.
Our tour guide showed us the defect in the bottom of the largest bowl of three, making the price cheaper.
These are the inside of the three bowls we watch him make. In the back you can see the chunk of wood they were cut from. The small round circle of wood in the center of each bowl will be sanded flat by another worker, after they are steamed and dried.
Carved bowls are steamed here for about four hours to draw out the sap and allow the moisture to penetrate the woods pores so the bowls won’t crack and split.
The wood bowls dry for one month after they are steamed.
Once they are dried they are sanded. Imperfections are sanded out and the bowl gets a flat bottom.
They store extra items for sale in the factory in addition to the showroom. Each item is available for free engraving, I had both of mine engraved.
The last process of each bowl is to rub this bee’s wax mixed with mineral oil all over the bowl. The bowls are ready to fill with salads, fruits or even popcorn when you take them home.
The bowls can be hand washed with soap and water, rinsed and dried immediately.
They suggest to maintain the bowl, rub it with their product, bee oil or mineral oil to protect the wood against drying, splitting or cracking.
If you ever go to Holland Michigan, make sure you make this a stop, we loved it!
I was not compensated for this post.
Categories: Day Trip/Vacation