Although I took it quite slow yesterday, I did accomplish a few things. I planned on taking a nap in the afternoon, but I was involved in other things and I forgot. That was a good sign.
I finished working on the drawings for the gingerbread candle try. The first tray I did was all gingerbread men. But then I looked at it and thought that he looked lonely so I altered the patterns to make him a girlfriend. I decided to include both designs in the pattern as some people have daughters and some sons. Then I wound up making a third version with alternating boys and girls. It didn’t take very long to modify things, as I kept the border the same on all three. I thought that the variety would appeal to many people and they would feel as if they are getting the most for their money. I always try to do some extra stuff like that.
I received an email early in the day from a customer who made my Christmas tree embellished ornaments and also my snowflake embellished ornaments. He said he loved the pattern, but he had some trouble with some of the spots blowing out when he drilled close to the edges. I looked at the patterns and they were indeed close in some areas. I could see where areas were a little close to the edge. However, I remember when I made them that I could go right to the edge and there wasn’t really a problem.
He said that the circles which indicated where to drill the depressions for the beads were under the 1/8” size that the pattern called for. When I brought the pattern up in my Illustrator software, they were indeed a bit smaller. I don’t really know how that happened, but sometimes it does. Now in the instructions, I indicate that you only touch the drill bit to the wood, making a depression for the crystal to sit in and I am thinking that he must have drilled deep or all the way through as some who didn’t want to put crystals in had told me they had done. If this were the case, the side would definitely be a bit too close.
In any case, I went back and adjusted everything so that even if someone were to drill all the way through the ornaments, they would do fine. There were 12 Christmas trees and 10 snowflakes to check and redraw, so this took most of the day for me to fix.
I suppose that what was there wasn’t actually wrong. I cut all the ornaments out myself and tested them and they did fine. I think I am at a point where what is second nature to me isn’t always what comes naturally to everyone else. It is sometimes difficult to think in terms of a beginner or someone who is newer to the craft. I think that is why I like it when people point things out for me. These two patterns were done prior to my friend Leldon doing the proofreading for me. Although it wasn’t actually a mistake, Leldon in all probability would have questioned the spacing. Leldon is an excellent cutter and also designs his own patterns. I would consider him advanced to expert. But sometimes when someone else sees your work they are able to see it in a different light and point out things that you take for granted or miss. I am glad that he helps me.
After the patterns were revised, I sent the updated copies to the customer along with an additional pattern for his troubles. Once in our correspondence, when he was making his point, he said that he hoped I wasn’t angry with him for telling me. I was surprised that he would think I would be angry, and told him that I did appreciate the feedback. I would certainly rather have someone telling me that they are having trouble with something that I designed rather than just throw it on the shelf and not notify me. How would I ever know if people didn’t communicate back to me? It does help to keep me grounded and aware of things and I think it also makes me a better writer and designer.
The sun was out yesterday, which was rare of late so I laid out and prepped the gingerbread tray. I found a nice piece of aspen that I thought would do wonderfully for the project, as I want to tint the gingerbread people as I did the leaves in the trays before and needed light wood to do so on. I had forgotten about the aspen that I just purchased at the last outing and I am excited to use it. When cutting the perimeter and inner circle of the tray, I remembered what a joy it was to work with. It is semi-soft – almost like pine, but the structure is much more stable and there is very little obvious grain and no sap to deal with. Although it would not be great for something that is intricate to scroll, with the half inch thickness I am using in combination with the relatively simple pattern it will make a fine base for this design.
I cut and routed the edges of the tray and will cut out the design today. I am looking forward to it, as it seems it has been a while since I have been at the scroll saw. Hopefully, I will have some pictures for you tomorrow.
I am also in the midst of doing some major organization. With living in a small place here, it seems that things really pile up quickly. I need to go through things and sort things out and get everything in order again. I like knowing exactly where everything is when I need it and taking an hour here and there to keep things in order pays off quite a bit down the line when I am in the middle of a project and need to find something. It feels good when everything is sorted and where it should be. I always feel I work better when it is that way.
Thank you for all the nice thoughts yesterday, both on the list and in PM’s. I only have a couple more days on the medication I have to take and then I am sure that I will be back to normal. I made some creme of chicken and rice soup and that went down very well. At least I will be done with this all by next Thursday when I am going to celebrate Thanksgiving. I have to be able to eat for that! :)
Have a great Friday everyone.
-- Contributing Editor, Creative Woodworks and Crafts, Sheila Landry Designs http://www.sheilalandrydesigns.com "Knowledge is Power"