Local woodworker makes market debut

Farmers Market - Thomas and Zuzy - Photo by SPINSun Peaks craftsman Thomas Neveu, 25, is making his debut at the Sun Peaks & Region Farmers’ Market this season.

The self-taught woodworker has a range of items for sale, including wine-racks, bird-houses and home décor items.

Neveu came to Sun Peaks from Abbotsford two years ago to work as a ski-patroller, and quickly found a place to call home. With most of his working career spent outdoors on the ski slopes, Neveu admits the idea of running a market stall was “a little-nerve wracking.”

“I’ve never done anything like this before. But it’s really exciting. It feels great when somebody appreciates my work. Even if they don’t buy it, just getting the compliment is nice.”

After the ski season ended this year, Neveu found himself with some extra time on his hands. Sitting on his patio on a sunny day, he decided to try and his hand at solar carving. Using a magnifying glass, he burnt an image of the surrounding mountains and trees into a block of wood.

Posting the photo on his Facebook page, Neveu was overwhelmed with positive feedback from friends, and decided to use his downtime to hone his craft.

“I’ve always been a little artistic but I’ve never really tried to get better. I really enjoy doing this though.”

Neveu has since carved plenty of local animals, including bears, deer and birds, into his woodwork.

“Not everything I make has a solar carving. They take a really long time to do. I get burnt out.”

Mostly, Neveu uses salvaged wood which he collects locally.

“A lot of people throw out old pallets. I break them down, cut up the pieces I need, sand them, stain them, and then piece it all together. I’m slowly getting better at it. Hopefully I’ll continue to improve my craft this summer.”

Neveu will be at the local Farmers’ Market every Sunday, sharing a stall with his friend, local illustrator and author Zuzy Rocka.