Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Work Table Wednesday

Lots on the worktable this week...and it looks like it will stay that way for many weeks to come. Yay!

I have two worktables in the my studio these days. The large 8' x 8' upstairs in the actual studio space and a new to me old metal porch set that I got at an auction for $2. One of the best deals ever!


Have I mentioned I LOVE my studio? I really do. I know I am very fortunate to have such a great place to work. A few weeks ago, I decided to take back some work space downstairs in the shop, rearranged, moved in the table and set up an area for making candles and other projects I wouldn't want to work on upstairs for some reason or another. It makes a nice display piece too when I'm not using it for a work table.

The new work table area
It used to look like this back there
I made my first batch of Holiday soy candles yesterday...Pumpkin Souffle.  It was so nice to have everything in one place and not have to mess up my kitchen and dining room. The studio and shop smell like Thanksgiving Day. Yum!

My brother-in-law, the plumber, got us this old farm sink and Rick built the base.  I'm using an enamel table top as a back splash until I find another use for it.  The shelf above is an old green chippy locker door.

I'm using found objects as candle containers this season. Can't wait to show you how cute! 

 Upstairs, on the big table are three file boxes awaiting embellishments. They are the same file boxes from the Container Store that I used on the last keepsake box project.

Such a nice box to start with!

Two boxes are for little boys and the other one obviously is for a little girl. I've shopped for papers and other embellishments and now I have to get busy piecing it all together. I'm still looking for what I want to use for feet.

For a boy with navy and other blues and red as an accent

For a boy with classy Ralph Lauren type patterns

For a girl with a bold floral and polka dots

I should be pretty far along by next Wednesday and hopefully they will already begin to look like the keepsake boxes they are meant to be. Stop by for Work Table Wednesday next week and see.

So, back to the work table(s). What are you working on this week?

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Outside the Box

Lots going on this fall here at the ranch...more unexpected surprises...we are once again homeschooling. Yay! More about that maybe later...but, I will go ahead and say it's all good!

It's been busier than ever this past month, but too, I've taken many days off to spend with Erin. I love having flexibility, but it can also be exhausting! I can't believe this is our last week together before she goes back to Oklahoma. Boo and Hiss! 

I have managed to finish a couple of small commissions....


This is one that I got as a result of my Etsy shop...it's a keepsake box for a new baby girl that will house her drawings, awards, lovies and maybe a love letter or two...

It started with this great file box the customer sent me from The Container Store. It's sturdy cardboard, heavy enough to keep it's shape under the glue, paper, paint and polycrylic....and boy was it fun to make! 



The name and birth date is painted on vintage sheet music and I did a collage-like treatment with papers, acrylic paint and ribbon for added interest.

This is actually a print of the original piece on top of the box. I was afraid that the vintage paper would be too fragile for actual use, even with the poly finish. I'm really glad now that I invested in a good fine art printer earlier in the year and most recently a new scanner. The print looks identical to the original and sturdy to boot! Because it's printed with archival inks there was no worry of the ink smearing under the polycrylic.

I'm including the original piece in the order as a gift to the buyer for her scrapbook or maybe even for framing.


As with all of my boxes, I like to embellish the insides a little too...the paper on the bottom of this one hides the wooden dowels that attach the ball feet to the bottom of the box.


The ribbon on the top and bottom is a sheer brown organza. I didn't realize it was sheer when I bought it and it was a very pleasant surprise effect. I love when that happens!


I decided on stripes because of the size of the box compared to the size of the decorative papers I use. The box is the largest I've done to date...16 3/4" x 13 3/4" x 10 5/8 h. The papers are 12" x 12". The stripes allowed me to piece the papers without showing seams...experience I've gained over all the years hanging wallpaper. I'm thinking if I do any more large boxes I may use wallpaper...or maybe NOT...now that I think about it, it reminds me of back in the eighty's when I worked for a designer and we made dozens of paisley shaped boxes and covered them with wallpaper. Ugh!


I am happy with how it turned out and hope the buyer is just as happy with it! 


This one is the clock box that I showed you the beginnings of a while back sometime in August. It's also a commission and I believe I remember hearing that it would be for stamps and envelopes on her desk. It's a 7" square paper mache box, the smallest I've found to work with the clock kits I have.


This isn't the new owner's trophy, but it would be a nice way to preserve some of them I think. Looking at the top, it makes me wish I had done a little something more to the top...it's hand painted by the way.


It's pretty all the way around with two different papers, the floral ribbon and nickel tacks.


The embossed pink paper gives the appearance of tooled leather don't you think? When I found it I couldn't wait to use it! Now, I can't wait to use it again.

I'd like to decorate for fall and Halloween around here this week. If October goes by as fast as September did, we won't get to enjoy our Halloween decorations for very long. Got yours out yet?