Ian Gasking's excellent new book

Australia's skills of the past ianportrait

 Did you know that:

• the architectural style of the Queenslander house dates back to the harems of Mogul Emperors, bungalows of Benghal and the Malaysian jungle?
• bullocks don't need to be sworn at to get them to work hard?
• they're part of our colonial past, but the pit-sawing of logs, hand-making of bricks, harvesting by hand and milling with water wheels are still common practice in some countries?

flyer1To find out more about these topics and many more, you'll need to read a newly published book entitled "Australia's skills of the past". by local writer Ian Gasking. It is written from the Ian's own personal experience gained over a lifetime as a farm boy in Tasmania; a builder working all over Australia and Papua New Guinea; and twenty years as design manager for luxury hotels internationally. He currently lives in the Scenic Rim, Queensland.

flyer2The book is both a practical and a historical guide to many of the skills rapidly being lost, and a great resource book of vanishing lifestyles and work practices. It is of great value to renovators of old equipment and buildings, designers, builders, hobby farmers, DIYers and history buffs. The wonderfully illustrated and detailed chapters on the many crafts of nineteenth and early twentieth century Australia should enable you to replicate these crafts. The chapter on the evolution of the wheel takes us back even millenia to the wheel's first inventors.

wheelPractical information is framed within the history of an earlier Australia, when the ingenuity and tenacity of early settlers was critical to survival. Living in an age when life is easier, we can only admire their courage and skills.

The breadth and depth of Ian's book is impressive; it can be read as a how-to-do-it, a history of earlier centuries and an appreciation of Ian's thoughts on many topics. It will make an excellent gift. We have a sample copy here at the Info Centre, but to purchase a copy, you will have to email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.. The cost is $50, which includes postage.