Today I have been working on a spalted hornbeam bowl. This wood is very striking, pale in colour but with very prominent black streaks.
On the outside, which is turned first, there was a small dead patch near the rim. After sanding and oiling, it was going to be an asset to the bowl. The dilemma came when I started the inside. As the wall of the bowl got thinner, the dead patch turned out to be loose. It was the decayed remains of a knot, once a small side branch.
There are several options in a case like this. I could have glued the little plug in place. The problem with this is that the glue often shows. Or I could have just turned it away, leaving the bowl shallower. I decided just to let the plug fall out. There is now a small opening at the rim, with a natural inner surface. I think it makes a good contrast with the otherwise smooth wall, and I look forward to seeing it with its finish applied. Bowls seem to come to life when the oil goes on.