Wood N What-Knots of Character

Chemung, New York · 746 Sales


Wood N What-Knots of Character

Chemung, New York 746 Sales On Etsy since 2012

5 out of 5 stars

Announcement   Wood, Hardware and Accessories for a world of Recycling and Re-Purposing. Things of Use, Things Unique, Things Renewable & Things Antique.


Last updated on Oct 22, 2015

Wood, Hardware and Accessories for a world of Recycling and Re-Purposing. Things of Use, Things Unique, Things Renewable & Things Antique.

John Burdick

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John Burdick

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Average item review
5 out of 5 stars

cuniacke on Jun 9, 2018

5 out of 5 stars

Required longer bolts for my drawers; totally worth it! Upgrade on the old dressers:)

View all 163 reviews


Sustainability and World Hunger Major Focus of Wood & What-Knots of Character

In 2002 my friend Bill Lane and I took a ride around the backroads of Tioga and Chemung Counties in New York and Bradford County in Pennsylvania. Our discussion lead to thoughts on how to preserve the heritage and workmanship that went into the building of the surrounding farmland structures and other architecture in the deteriorating countryside. From that seed the thought of recycling the wood and architectural features set in motion Wood & What-Knots of Character.

The thought was to devise ways to salvage and reuse the materials and reduce the impact on the demand for hardwoods and softwoods prevalent in the timber industry in our area. It was also intended to salvage and honor the heritage established by our forefathers.

After taking down my first barn in Newark valley New York I discovered a love for things vintage and antique as I was required to remove a large number of items stored in the barn prior to the deconstruction process. Tools, furniture, hardware, toys, and a myriad of other items filled my truck before the first board was salvaged. I had inherited a new love of all things old and well crafted.

Although a lot of the wodden beams were sold off immediately the salvaged pine, hemlock and hardwood planks and siding languished instorage with little strategy for their turnover. In addition I was ill equipped to broker the many other items I had accumulated and needed to find storage for them as well. Twas a learning process all the way.

Eventually I began selling at flea markets and through the help of friends set up a quaint shop in the small Village of Waverly NY. The turnover was slow and I spent more money supporting the project than the project could generate.

I began to successfully recreate a few things that sold, and found venues via E-bay and long term setups in flea markets and small shops for both the antique and vintage items as well as my own primitives. I still needed to develop a strategy to support these activities although I began seeing progress in the previously lopsided balance sheet.

That was when I added additional products to my line including woodworker hardware and accent pieces. These were natural compliments to the things creation I was engaged in.. Although these are not directly created by me they became enough of a seller to enable me to break even on my efforts to renew, reuse, and recycle.

At first most of the items I made were rather primitive and my son-in-law, wife and a few others were "kind" enough to let me know just what they thought of them. With time I think I have become better at producing items from my recycled materials that have beauty and character with solid, and useful design. I'll let you be the judges of that though.

On January 1, 2014 I awoke to realize that I no longer had a commitment to make a living for my corporate employers. Retirement had become a reality. Although my employers have provided a decent living and the funds to support a few of my own dreams I find myself much more enthusiastic about pursuing my commitment to sustainability and to another project that has become near to my heart.

As I move on to my new full time commitment to the goals of Wood & What-Knots of character I have also given my commitment to do what I can to combat world hunger. In today's society with all our capacity to produce, process and distribute food I find it deplorable to think that companies will waste and dispose of hundreds of thousands of tons of food each year while so many people both here and abroad are dying, in ill health or are just plain hungry.

In the 70's and 80's my family and I were active supporters of the Lancaster PA Jaycees and as such I have evolved to affirm the tenet that "Service to humanity is the BEST WORK OF LIFE" and as such please peruse the following.

I am fortunate enough to be an American. I believe that we are "all", and when I say all I mean all and not just Americans, endowed with certain inalienable rights of Life, Liberty and the pursuit of happiness. I also believe that without life no one can pursue anything much less liberty or happiness. Life requires food, water and shelter. When we deny anyone food, water or shelter we deny them their most basic rights. In turn that denies them of any possibility of gaining any other rights. We are our brothers' keeper and as such "A thousand times each day I must remind myself that my inner and outer life is dependent on men (and women) both living and died from whom I have received and am still receiving and I must give of myself in the same measure. (Albert Einstein).

With this new year, 2014, I will begin my effort to ensure life for all world citizens. I hope you will join me in the effort.

I frequently Sponsor the United Nations (UN) the WFP provides an extremely efficient distribution of much needed foods throughout the world. Beneficiaries of the program include the poverty stricken citizens of the USA, as well as needy populations on the 6 major continents of the world. Thank you for recycling, saving heritage and feeding the world.

Around the web

Shop members

  • John Harry Burdick

    Owner, Maker, Designer, Curator, Woodworker, Recycler, Hunger Fighter, Your Servant

    Started Wood & What-Knots of Character in February 2003. Began by recycling barns and sheds and followed a growing interest in antique and vintage hardware. Permanently retired from working for other businesses and began working for "You" 12/31/13

  • Tim Sanphy


    Blacksmith extraordinaire, creates custom hand wrought items as well as traditional tools and accents used by early American pioneers

Production partners

  • Timothy Sanphy

    Sayre, PA

    Practicing Blacksmith since 1982. Produces many items used by civil war re-enactors and basic pioneering supplies. Other items he has produced include garden accent, home hardware, horseshoes and fairy garden pieces.

Shop policies

Last updated on January 5, 2014
Thank you for visiting Wood & What-Knots of Character (WWKC). I appreciate your interest and I hope I'll be able to fulfill one or more of your needs. My primary goal for WWKC is to continue to provide:
Things of Use,
Things Unique,
Things Renewable and
Things Antique.
(Burma Shave.)
All at reasonable prices and quality servicing of your needs.
Since 2003 I have explored a wide range of sources for hardware and collectibles if you do not see what you are seeking I hope you will contact me for further assistance.
My Phone and address will be provided upon request.

Accepted payment methods

  • Accepts Etsy Gift Cards and Etsy Credits
  • Money Order
  • Check
  • Other Method
Returns and exchanges
Returns will be accepted for the cost of original purchases when the items have been misrepresented by the pictures or descriptions used for posting the item.

In additon, eligible items for return will have cost $20.00 or more.

Purchases at or under the purchase price of $19.99 are not eligible for return authorization.

In all instances the buyer pays the cost of the return shipment and is reimbursed for the intial cost of purchase only. This does not included funds paid for the initial shipment

Buyers are offered the opportunity to purchase shipping insurance to cover loss or damages. If items are damaged or lost during shipment the buyer will be responsible for filing any claims with the shipping entity.

Items damaged due to negligent packaging will be reimbursed by the seller only if proof of damage is provided via pictures and testimony.
When we meet in person Cash is always the prefered medium for payment.
Online purchases can be paid for via Paypal, or by Certified Check or Money order.
Payment Policy
I expect that you will pay upon ordering through ETSY payment venue, or contact me within 24hrs to confirm your method of payment. Said payment must then be received within 98 hours or four days of your notice for method of payment.

NYS Residents are required to pay an 8% sales tax unless the purchaser provides the authentic proof and forms as to their exemptioon status. (sorry, no ifs ands or buts about this one.)

Please don't cancel orders but if you have to please do so before it ends up costing both of us extra money.
Plan a Visit
I Prefer not to ship at all and would welcome your visit to "The Barn" at our conveniences.

Shipping Small Items
Small items i.e. screws and hardware will be shipped using regular mail parcel post in cushioned packaging and may include a small fee for packaging materials.

Box Shipments
I prefer sending larger items or bulk purchases of hardware via USPS Flat rate Priority mail. While the Boxes are free, a small fee (not to exceed $3.35) may be added to insure that safe packaging materials will be used. Other methods of shipment will be considered if they offer reduced rates or are asked for by the buyer.

BIG Shipments
Items in excess of 40 lbs or larger than the large Flat Rate Priority boxes may be purchased with the expectation that the buyer will either pick the item up at my locations in the Southern Tier of NYS or Arrange their own method for shipment. In these instances if a Crate needs to be provided a charge of from $15.00 to $150.00 will be added to your cost of shipment.
Additional policies and FAQs
Custom Items
Patrons seeking specific items that I can create from recycled wood, project furniture, and a myriad of other recyclable materials are available. These pieces include key lotion, hair product, coat and spice racks, jelly cupboards, stools & benches, lawn furniture, glass cutting, display racks,

Wholesale Purchases:
All new Hardware products, most new knobs and pulls as well as many handmade wood products may be purchased in bulk lots. Pricing and minimum quantities are available upon request.

Devulging customer's personal or contact information to other entities for any reason will not be done by the management or staff of Wood and what-Knots of Character.