|Project by Novicebutlearning||posted 05-22-2010 06:13 AM||3109 views||15 times favorited||24 comments|
Well over a year ago, my mom asked me to build her something “nice” to replace the rickety and slap-dash shoe rack that was built by her house’s previous owner. I said “sure” and set to designing the piece. Never mind that I did not have a usable workshop, or any work benches, and only one usable electrical outlet. (I should fill you in, my tools’ first home, after I inherited them, was a storage room with one electrical outlet and terrible lighting.)
Undeterred, I set to work.
After month’s of making do with my setup: constantly plugging-and-unplugging machines; hand-planing the solid wood sides because my 15” planer could not get power; constantly tripping the breaker; breathing in buckets of dust and straining to see my work, I got a break and moved into my first real space (the workshop presently featured.) There I could run power for the planer and jointer, build my dust collector, build some workbenches and wire some lighting. It was there that I assembled the sides and made (most of) the top. Unfortunately, I was forced to move before I could finish the piece. And so this piece moved into a barn with all my tools and sat there for the winter. This summer, I rescued it from the barn and brought it to a friend’s workshop where I finished the top, joined it to the casing and put on the first 4 coats of spar varnish. I then brought it to my house where I put on the next 2 coats and sanded and polished it.
If you have been counting, that is 5 separate work areas. Yikes!
Not that my lack of a suitable workshop was the least of my concerns. I made more mistakes than I care to count. My original design is COMPLETELY different than the final product. In fact, apart from the shelves, every other aspect of the design was an attempt to design my out of a mistake I made.
I learned tons on this piece! My skills grew tons. I also learned that grit and determination can overcome poor planning, a lack of funds, an inadequate workspace and a lack of skills. However, I can promise everyone on this forum, that, for the sake of my sanity, I will not build another piece of furniture until I am financially secure and have a usable work space.
For something that holds shoes, I think it did good.
-- A laborer uses his hands. A craftsman uses his hands and his head. An artist uses his hands, his head and his heart.