Monday, November 20, 2017

It's so Dark....

Makes me Want to Hibernate
I don't know what is up with it being so dark lately...but I don't like it. Here in southern Colorado, its midnight dark by 5pm! Depressing. I don't remember it getting so dark, so early last year.... Its hard to get things done when all I want to do is sleep. I have been working very hard tho, tho at the moment it doesnt look like I have anything to show for it. Last weekend I worked the four butterflies on the top panel of my flat top casket...so this weekend I was super excited to get to start my two angels. Their wings are a big focal point~ each feather I am working separately.  I drew in lightly with pencil where each feather would go....eventually.

 So there's not much to show for an entire weekend of work...the two angel busts are attached now...but thats about it.  You can see their poor feet dangling on the panel~ I just have them pinned in....not sure if they will even have feet or not yet....

 The entire weekend, just about, I spent working 2 pieces of needle weaving....for portions of their gowns. I wanted them to be open and kind of lacey...so made up my own stitch. The second piece has more open areas, so they both wont be totally the same. It was fun, but took what seemed like eons...

 I have been working like crazy out in the shop trying to get orders filled for Christmas, and working on orders due in January and Feb(I just can't crank out things in a day)....I think it is hard for people to really understand how much time and effort I put into my work....so I took a few pictures of the shop yesterday to try and maybe show why ya'll have to wait for things.  When you open up one of my kits and see all the cut and portioned threads....they didnt arrive like that! We had to measure, cut, package and label each and every container....me...myself and I. We have a great time doing it...but it takes time.  Oh...and that awesome picture on the cover....of the finished model....we stitched that too, so that we can write you the most complete stitching instructions possible. We make an awesome team, ....me, myself, and I...but we can only do so much in a day.

 The wood for my stitching tools I mill myself...we are planing down stock for padded mirror cases in the picture above.... Each and every hole on a thread palette, gets drilled not once, but twice~ once from the front, half way, and then again from the back, so there is no tear out....same goes for holes in the slats of my slate frames....there are 48 holes on a single large slat, so 96 holes per large slate frame, drilled twice is 196 holes I have to drill for one large slate frame....then they all get sanded.....and yes, each and every hole I drill, gets sanded inside the hole!  When you see a shaped thread winder...I cut out each and every one, myself, on a scroll saw. If it's a circle.....dont even dare think I use some hole saw jig....absolutely not~ I cut that sucker out freehand, absolutely.

 Speaking of slate frames.... I had a visitor to the shop the other day see this stack of frames I have to make the mortise & tenon joints for, and he says...'so you use a mortising bit on a router for those I been thinking about getting one'   To which I replied, "no~ I dont use power tools for my slate frames~ theyre too small. A power bit has too much power and bends in the wood when its this small~ I use rasps and a chisel."  ...He didn't believe me until I showed him, to which I then got the~ you are crazy comment. Its  what I do~ I enjoy the process just as much as I enjoy the finished product.

I wanted to have a slide top spool box ready for eBay this weekend...I got the box done, but not painted, so it will be coming soon! I am also working on some regular spool palettes for those of you who dont want a hole box. Here are three sets of spindles....and yes, I make them too~
  
 It took an entire afternoon, and I mean an entire afternoon to sand and shape the tops of the spindles!

 I have been working on some new designs in between other things. Got in some new wood, this is quarter sawn sycamore, and I love love love the design of the grain~ its only achievable by sawing the wood this way.  I have been wanting to make this shape of a thread winder for a while~ I have to have a steady hand on my saw....it's a replica of a c1840 winder...coming to eBay this week!

 As you can see, we(me, myself and I) have all sorts of things going at once...while some things are getting clamped...I work on something else....everyone is patiently waiting for their turn!

 Ok...I'm so excited about it, here is a peek of the thread winder going on eBay this week! For me, this is the best winder I have made to date~ I have been experimenting with different finishes to try and get a more Early American looking finish to my work, and finally, finally have a lacquer based finish that I am super super happy with. Its strong and super smooth to the touch. The varnish I have been using sometimes can feel tacky to the touch after fully cured~ which was just the nature of the varnish...I have been trying to get my finish to look and feel like a hand rubbed and worn finish....and finally, success! I know ya'll will be as happy with it as I am....not to mention the colors of the design~ these are water colours folks!


And if all that wasnt enough to keep me busy... husband decided to throw a new puppy into my day. We lost our beloved Yetti on the 4th of July, and well...I really wasnt ready for another Pyrenees yet....any puppy for that matter. But what can you do~ that wicked little face is so cute. I personally wanted to name him 'White Devil'....because he tears around the house, eats everything in sight...my shoes, the kids shoes....pots, pans...I caught him chewing up tiles from the floor the other day :::sigh:::  ...but alas, his name is Yukon, so everyone~ say hello to Yukon....he wont be little little for long!

3 comments:

The Chilly Hollow Needlepoint Adventure said...

Congratulations on the new puppy. GPs are great dogs. We have had (and lost) two and I do want another, even though we have two Akita puppies now. Hug the White Devil for me!

Barbara Brown said...

Looks like you're busy, busy, busy! As usual!! Yukon is going to be fun until he gets out of "puppyhood" and quits chewing up everything in sight!! All I can say is, just remember he's a baby and will eventually learn, meanwhile......have fun! lol LY, Mom

pamina said...

Welcome to your little dog ! It will be a lot of fun ...and work also ! I can't wait to see your progess on your casket. It will be amazing !
It's nice to see where you work..so many things to do and never enough time.... Laurence