The hand-made castles of Stefan Lüpges

Two weekends ago the Town Foundation Festival took place in München, celebrating over 8 centuries since it’s official establishment. To mark this event the city gathered together lots of artists and craftsman in the old city center, from woodworkers to glassblowers, from knitters to painters and from blacksmiths to sculptors. The old center was filled with booths showcasing this multitude of talents through a vast array of hand crafted products.

Among all the stands present I noticed one that really caught my attention with a very ingenious idea: interactive wooden castles! Now this might not sound so exciting when reading it, but I should mention that the castles weren’t just made of plain wood, they were sawn from actual tree logs, tinder and bottle corks and were composed of movable parts that enabled hiding the castle back inside the log/tinder/cork. This quickly reminded me of the Game of Thrones opening credits, only that these were actually real and in front of me.


As an fret saw enthusiast myself, I was very interested to see how this clever idea could be put into practice. To the right of his booth, the craftsman – Stefan Lüpges – had his electric fretsaw with which he created these little marvels right in front of the eyes of anyone curious enough to take a glance at the process. What was more amazing was the way he made everthing seem so easy, despite the complexity of his finished work. That’s true craftsmanship!

Tinder: intricate castle
Cork: tiny towers
Wood: complex fortress

After trying hard to decide which wooden castle to bring home with me I finally settled on one – the one shown bellow – and proceeded to pay for it, but not without asking for some contact details first, so that I could explore more of his marvelous work from home as well and recommend him to all those enthusiastic about such arts & crafts.


Before giving us our model castle Stefan kindly showed us how to pop-up the walls and towers and lock them into place and explained how he did the wood sawing at an angle so that the pieces don’t simply pop-out all together. He seemed like a very nice guy to talk to and his work obviously spoke for itself. Feel free to explore some more of his work on his official website: