August 20, 2008

A Quote to Keep in Mind

I was killing time one morning this week waiting for the first caffiene rush to hit and I found this on a business blog I have begun following:

"When your work speaks for itself, don't interrupt."
- Henry J. Kaiser

(Henry Kaiser was a 20th century American Industrialist and Shipbuilder)

The as soon as I read it I did not think of business, I thought of being an Apprentice. How often does our work get complements and then we reply "Thanks, but....and into an explanation of the nit picky faults we ourselves find in it.

August 18, 2008

A '12th century painted chest'

This is a project I finished this summer.

How to make a "12th century painted chest" for those folks who have no tools:
Take the Ikea APA toybox:

Start by staining the wooden rails. Then paint the panels with matte finish spray paints. Painters Touch Decorator colors work well. For the panels that are pre-assembled in the kit, mask the different areas with masking tape and paper.

This design is my interpretation of a Tree of Life pattern from the doorways of early medieval English churches.

Cut a stencil out of thin posterboard. Save the inner pieces to mask unpainted areas.
Paint the green vines first.

Pull the flower shapes away to then paint yellow.

Hold down the cardboard so mist does not get under the stencil.

When dry, pull stencils sway carefully. Your spray painting is done! Outline shapes with a black matte enamel paint (like Rust-o-leum). Assemble the rest of the chest according to directions.

I lined the inside with felt. The inner surface of the panels is a rough textured pulpwood, and I wanted to hide that.

Your chest is almost done!
Add handles to the sides.

I also added nail-in chair gliders to protect the bottom of the chest. The lid is left as a lift off type, hinges will not work because of the rail shape.

August 11, 2008

Embroidered Roses for Queen's Gift Baskets

A trio of embroidered roses contributed to the Queens Gift Baskets at this years Pennsic. They will be appliqued to handkerchiefs.

The first 2 have satin, stem, and seed stitch.

The last one is done in blackwork fill stiches outlined in stem stich. While I worked on the blackworked rose, I watched the first disk of the Tudors. Nicely appropriate.