4′ Hand Carved Church Pew

carved-pew-tnI’ve been commissioned to create two hand carved church pews.  The first pew is based on the scripture, “by His stripes we are healed”.  The second will be designed around, “come boldly unto the throne of grace”.  Both will be four feet long and feature custom hand carved wood with glass mosaics.

Consider a custom pew such as this as a gift to your church or as a way to honor a member through a memorial fund.

Keep reading to see the in progress photos as I work through these pews.  Click to view the in progress photos and more!

Most recent image: (3/29/15) – COMPLETE!  After all of the carving, all of the glass cutting, the wiring and other final touches – the pew is back together and looking great!

From the beginning: Here’s a shot of the pews that I will be working from – I’ll start by dismantling one and cutting it down to size.  Then I’ll carve and build a light-box for the back and add the glass mosaic behind the carving. I LOVE the arms on these pews! I need to find something cool to put in the ovals.

original pewsHere is a link to my previous hand carved church pew.

Ok, it’s been a little while since my last update, but now my Christmas light show is running!

I have the pews (yes 2 pews!) apart and am finishing up the sanding to get the existing stain removed.  Once this is done, I can finally start carving!

sanded pews ready for carvingI’m finally at the point that I can start carving!!  I’m starting with the sides in the oval area.  The client requested a feather with an eye in it.  So after some design work, I sketched it out and have one side complete, and the other side ready to go!

Click for a larger image below

hand carved feather sketch           hand carved feather final

Carved Feathers More images to come soon as I start carving away!  😀

For the second pew, I’m carving crosses into the sides.  I have one side done now!

DSCN7430hand carved cross with robe pewI have finished carving, added dark brown grain filler and did a final sanding on all of the arms, they are now ready for glass.  I will be signing these carvings with copper wire embedded in the glass.  The white paint is to help enhance the glass colors.
Click for larger images:

hand carved feather for church pewhand carved cross with robe for church pew  hand carved church pews ends






More carving the past couple of days!  I have finished carving the ends and added the glass borders and am (somewhat) patiently waiting for them to set completely.  I am working on the stain and clear coats to get the ends completed before I move on to the rest of the pews.

hand carved church pews ends 02hand carved feather with glass sig







I’ve also completed the first scripture for the seat of one of the pews.

with his stripes we are healed wood carvingAnd now the ends are complete!  Click the images below for a closer look!

hand-carved-church-pew-cross-left-end-950-sig hand-carved-church-pew-cross-right-end-950-sig hand-carved-church-pew-feather-left-end-950-sig hand-carved-church-pew-feather-right-end-950-sig



And now I’ve started carving the back of one of the pews.  The open area will be filled with a translucent glass mosaic.

hand carved jesus church pewAnd a little more carving… a little more sanding…  Still need to add the final details, but it’s coming together!

hand carved jesus church pew 02And now the second hand is almost done, and I’ve added some more detail to the robes.  It’s starting to come together!  😀

hand carved jesus church pew 03Closer view of the robe detail.

hand carved jesus church pew 04And now I can start working on the head area.

hand carved jesus church pew 05And now I’m carving the face.  It’s a bit of a challenge, but it’s coming along nicely.

hand carved esus church pew 06Light at the end of the tunnel!  Almost done with the face and hair.

hand carved jesus church pew 07And now the face is about done!  I’ll give a final look and make any changes that are needed before moving on to the next pew.

hand carved jesus church pew 08After all of the carving, I just need to add the stigmata holes in His hands and this pew will be done (well, the carving part anyways!).

hand carved jesus church pew 09And now the staining on the first pew is complete, I’ve put the pieces back together.  I’ll wait to do the glass until both pews are ready.

hand carved church pew assembledhand carved church pew assembled sidepew assembled scripture 2hand carved church pew assembled ChristAnd now work begins on the glass mosaic that sits behind the carving.

Glass mosaic for hand carved church pewWith more of the glass completed, here is a mockup showing how it might look in the pew:
… and more little pieces of glass get added to the mosaic…

Hand Carved Church Pew with Glass Mosaic - in progressThe glass is so close to being finished now – I can’t wait to see it all together!

Glass mosaic for hand carved church pewWith the glass done, I can relax for a moment.  😀  Here is a Photoshop mockup of how the pew will look:
Photoshop mockup of completed pew

11 thoughts on “4′ Hand Carved Church Pew

  1. Dykema Mathews

    Your work is awesome! I love it… Hope you can give me some direction. I have 25 used pews that will be used in a studio setting for guest. The idea is to have our 52 states curved in the pews with a colorful artiest cushion. I live in Michigan.

  2. Pingback: Hand Carved Church Pews by Cindy Chinn

  3. Michelle Guernsey

    Just stunning and so inspirational! I just love the mixed media and the strength of your work…..and this is the first piece I’ve seen!

  4. Pingback: Hand Carved Church Pew - 4' - #2 - by Cindy Chinn

  5. Donna

    Cindy, you are a remarkable artist and fantastic friend. You never cease to amaze me with your versatility and talent.
    Happy holidays, my friend,
    Donna xoxo

  6. Louis

    Great carvings nice to see someone renew church pews.I don’t know if your interested but I have church pews sides total of 6 pieces solid oak with carve scroll at top.I live in Northern Illinois 61072
    I would be happy to show you pictures. Prices are negotiating.

    1. Cindy Chinn Post author

      Thank you Louie, I’ll keep that in mind if the need arises. I am glad that you are enjoying the in-progress-photos… and that someone, other than myself, thinks that the process is interesting enough to have a look at the blog. 🙂


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