The Bone Dude's Bone Carving Studio was established in May 2003 in central Christchurch, forced to move following the Earthquake in 2011 and then relocated once more to Birdlings Flat, the gateway to Banks Peninsula in 2016. The environment may have changed, but the Studio continues to function as it always has, providing an opportunity for people to create their own unique taonga.

The new studio that I've set up, is in the converted garage at our home and at this stage I'm running  just a couple of sessions a week, 1pm - 4 pm Fridays and 10 - 1pm Saturdays. I do offer other sessions, evening etc depending on numbers. The maximum number I can have at a session will be limited to 7 people. Unfortunately I'm unable at this stage to host anybody in a wheelchair as my "facilities" aren't wheelchair friendly!

We provide a range of 16 different designs that serve as a starting point for your own carving adventure but people are welcome to design their own as long as what ever they come up with is their own design. I don't allow people to copy the work of other carvers, if their work appeals then buy it from them. Our idea is that if you can start with a simple design then if you choose to carry on at home you will have a better idea about the process and potentially what is possible with simple hand tools. There are other studios in New Zealand where they teach you how to use machinery but you are obligated to buy that machinery in order to carry on. I believe that as long as you follow our simple process that you will finish your session here with a much better carving than you could buy from most souvenir outlets.

I am obliged to also point out that I don't allow people to make Traditional Maori Designs. There are people out there producing this type of work who don't realize the significance of these designs or understand the origins of this work. I also don't offer the "stories" that are commonly found with Bone Carvings. If you design something it has the meaning that you give it, but to think that a fish hook for example will guarantee safe journey over water or that a whales tail represents speed are the notions of the mis-informed If you are creating a carving for someone else then I would say to you, all the good things you feel for that person are what you should think about while you are making their carving so that when you give it to them and tell them you made it for them, that's the significance.

As we have found recently in New Zealand our souvenir shops are full of Carvings, both Traditional and Contemporary that are not necessarily made in this country. Unfortunately some people have taken designs from New Zealand and sent them overseas to be made then shipped back to New Zealand to be sold to unsuspecting visitors to our country. There is nothing on the packaging to suggest that these carvings aren't in fact made here and for all intents and purposes they are presented in such a way to give the impression that they are made here.

Please Note, there are no Eftpos or Credit Card facilities in Birdlings Flat.