Last week I finished two napkin holders, and since I do not feature these items in my store, I thought I would post the pictures in my blog as well as the gallery. The designs for these holders are from Shiela Landry designs. I chose to make the sides out of 1/4" baltic birch plywood, and the bases are made from hardwood; in this case it is catalpa. The finish is water based lacquer over water based sanding sealer. I normally sell these napkins holders at craft fairs for $25, so if you are interested in purchasing one (or more) your price will be $25 each PLUS the cost of shipping to your destination. Please contact me by using the contact form on this website if you are interested. Enjoy the pictures!
Here is a photo of a pyrography project I recently completed. The patten for the project is from Lora Irish's "Great Book of Woodburning". Lora is a very talented artist, and I learn a lot from her books. This picture will be a birthday gift to my oldest son, Roger, who is a fire fighter in our town. He (obviously) does not look anything like the character in the picture, but I hope he will enjoy the completed project. The colors in the picture are done with watercolors, and the finish is water based lacquer. The frame is teak, since I had a piece that was about the right size. I had fun making it, and I hope you enjoy seeing it as well.
Each year I make many compound cut Christmas ornaments for sale at the various craft fairs I attend. Because many of my customers are intrigued about how I make these ornaments, I thought I would document the process I follow to make the angels I sell at the fairs and on my website.
The pattern I use to make the angel is from Diana Thompson’s book entitled Compound Christmas Ornaments for the Scroll Saw. You will also find instructions and patterns on her website: www.scrollsawinspirations.com.
The first step in the process is to select and cut to size the wood I will use to make them. I make the body of the angel out of pine (because it is light weight), and I make the wings out of cherry (because the wings are fragile, and therefore need to be made from a strong hardwood). The patterns for the body and the wings contain two views; a front view and a side view.
The photo above shows the pattern for the body attached to the pine stock. One side of the pine stock has the front view of the body, and the adjacent surface has the side view. A hole is drilled through the stock just outside the pattern lines on each side to allow me to feed the scroll saw blade through the stock.
This photo shows the stock on the scroll saw ready to be cut. The blade has been fed through the hole in one side of the stock, and is cutting along the pattern line. The two pieces of plywood clamped to the stock are used to help stabilize the piece during the cutting process. The magnifying glass is there to help the old man see where he is cutting.
This photo above is a close-up of the body being cut on the saw. I must cut completely around the perimeter on each view; front and side. After the side view has been cut, the cut-out piece must remain in the stock. Then the stock (with the cutout piece) is rotated and the front view is cut. Then I remove the two plywood support pieces and cut from the outside of the stock to the perimeter cuts that I had previously made. I take away the scrap and what remains is the body of the angel cut to the correct shape.
The two photos above show the front view (actually the back surface in this case, as you can see the groove cut in the neck area for mounting the wings) and side view of the angel body after it has been cut out of the stock. Sometimes the grain of the wood can create a striking pattern on the body.
The wings are cut in the same manner as the body. The photos above show the pattern attached to the cherry wood.
I often attach two or three copies of the pattern to the wood to make the process easier, but it does not seem to make it go faster!
The photos above show the pieces that are left after I have completed cutting both views of the wings, and a close-up of the piece that I will use (the wings). As you can see from the photo on the left, there is a lot of scrap material (waste) that is produced during this process.
Now I take the two component parts, glue the wings into the slot cut in the back of the body, and end up with the completed angle.
I drill a very small hole in the top of the head, and install a small eyelet to allow the customer to hang the angel on the Christmas tree. Then comes the sanding and finishing. I usually apply two coats of wipe-on polyurethane, sanding between coats. I usually will do a few of these angels at one time, and apply the finish to all of them at the same time, so I end up with a “flock” of angels hanging out to dry!
After all this work, I end up with a lot of scrap wood from the process. Thank God I have friends that burn wood to heat their home, so I give them my scraps for kindling!
I hope you have enjoyed my documentation of the process I follow to make these Christmas angels.
I have been busy the past few days constructing a new background for my craft fair display table. It is finally completed, and I thought I should show the results of my effort. These vertical back pieces have a wider footprint for more stability, and a shelf that will allow me to display a wider variety of items. I used a very light green paint on the pegboard, because most home walls are painted a light color (and I happen to like green). After the paint dried, I set out my products, and the finished display is shown below. I will keep it set up for a few days and try a few options on the display, trying different positions for some of the items to improve overall appearance. I like what I see so far, and hope you enjoy the photo.
I completed another tablet stand this week, and thought you might be interested in seeing the final product. The original tablet stand I made a couple of weeks ago was designed by a friend of mine in Ohio, and you can see photos of it in the gallery page of this website. The great concept of this stand is how it raises the tablet higher off the surface, allowing the user to view the screen much easier and more comfortably.
After completing that stand, I thought I could improve the appearance and customize the stand by adding an overlay design that reflect the interest of the owner. Since many people around here play golf, I decided to make an overlay showing something that would interest a golfer. I do many projects that are designed by Sheila Landry, and so I turned to my collection of her patterns for the overlay. I used her "Gone Golfing" pattern, reduced it by approximately 60%, and cut it out of 1/8" baltic birch plywood. The resulting overlay fits the stand perfectly, contrasting nicely with the cherry used to make the stand. I am hoping that a few of my customers are as pleased as I am with the finished product.
Based on the cost of materials, and the time necessary to complete the project, I intend to ask $70 for the finished stand. I will be adding this product to my store page in the next few days. Take a look at the pictures below and see what you think of the tablet stand. I hope to do a few more in the future with different overlay motifs that people might be interested in purchasing.
Click on any of the images below to enlarge the photo, and come back again soon to visit my website.
As some of you may know, I occasionally do other types of woodworking than scroll saw "stuff". I have wanted to learn how to do segmented vessels for a few years now, but have been unable to make the time to do it. This year I finally stuck with the promise I made to myself and make two salad bowls. The reason I did this (relatively) simply project was to find out if I could do the processes involved in a segmented project, since this was my first attempt. I needed to find out if I had the proper equipment and tools to actually complete the project I had selected. I had gone to a couple of seminars at the woodturning symposium at Pinkerton Academy last spring, and saw a simple bowl that one of the demonstrators had made. I thought something similar might be the perfect project for a beginner.
The completed salad bowls are shown in the photos below, and I thought they came out very well. The two woods used are maple and walnut, and each ring has 12 segments. They are approximately 6 inches in diameter and 2 1/2 inches tall, and finished with a mixture of mineral oil and beeswax. I made two bowls at the same time as since it is easier and faster, and both my wife and I enjoy salads. I do not plan on making segmented vessels for sale as they take way too much time and would be expensive to purchase, but I wanted to show another type of woodworking project I have done. Enjoy the photos, and thanks for visiting my website.
The photographs below (and in the gallery page) show the display tray I recently completed for a customer. Salena is a transformational life coach, and she uses the tray to display interesting and beautiful objects (such as gemstones) as part of her work. This is an example of a custom project that brought the concept the customer had in her mind into a completed product. The process involved both designing the tray and solving several problems associated with the assembly of the components that make up the tray. The tray is made from red oak, and finished with several coats of wipe-on poly. The size, measured at the rim, is approximately 12" wide, 17 " long and 2 1/4" deep. The project took about 23 hours of work to go from concept to completion. I hope Salena's new business will be a success, and perhaps we will change the design slightly for the next one.
Enjoy the photos, and contact me in you are interested in discussing a future custom project by using the contact form on the previous page of this website.
Yesterday I finished a very special butterfly jewelry box for my granddaughter Laura. She will be graduating from high school this year, snd I wanted to give her something special that I had made. Perhaps it will be something she can remember me by when I am gone from this earthly life.
I have included a few photos of the completed box below. This is a variation on one of Gary MacKay's designs. I love his butterfly designs, and I had not made this one before. The body of the box is made from Poplar, and the wings are made from Maple, Walnut and Cherry. This box requires even more work and time than the butterfly boxes I have previously made, but I believe the finished product is even more beautiful. I hope Laura likes the finished jewelry box, and her Grampa.
I do not intend to make another one for sale,but if you are interested in one as a special order, please contact me through the form on this website.
Enjoy the photos.
I have decided to put my jewelry boxes on consignment at a local jewelry store - Andrew Grant Diamond Center, on Southwick Road, Westfield, MA. I believe this is the beginning of a good working relationship with an established local store that is well known for quality jewelry and accessories. I am excited about having this location to display my products, and hope that a it will result in future sales. Please take a few minutes to visit their store if you are in the local area, or visit their website (www.grantjewelers.com).
As a consequence of this arrangement, I will be probably be dropping the jewelry boxes from this website if sales at the store are satisfactory. Each box requires considerable time to construct and finish, and I may not have the time to make enough product to supply the website and a store. I will see what the future holds, and take whatever action seems appropriate.
I added a few photos to the gallery page and to the bottom of this blog post.. I finishes a new Heart Shaped Jewelry Box that is now on display at Andrew Grant jewelry. I hope you like the design; enjoy the photos!
The Southern New England Scrollers, of which I am a member, participated in the New England Woodworking Show at the Eastern States Exposition in West Springfield, MA. The show ran from January 9 through January 11, 2015, and drew more vendors and more attendees than in previous years. Our booth was not in the main lines of traffic, but we are not complaining for the price we paid. We did meet a good number of people, and hopefully a few of them will become new members of our club. Although each day was long, the attendees kept us busy talking about scroll saws, blades, and everything associated with scrolling. If you did not have the opportunity to attend the show this year, mark you calendar for next year; it always turns out to be a fun and informative event. It always seems that I find something to buy that I need in my shop, and there are a lot of vendors there to help you part with your money, but perhaps that is a disease that only I have - or maybe not :).
I have included a couple of photos of our booth so you can see what it was like, and see the old man and his friend Max before the show started. Enjoy!