My Journey As A Scroll Saw Pattern Designer #240: Getting Lots Accomplished

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Blog entry by Sheila Landry (scrollgirl) posted 1173 days ago 2967 reads 0 times favorited 12 comments Add to Favorites Watch
« Part 239: On to the Saw! Part 240 of My Journey As A Scroll Saw Pattern Designer series Part 241: Pictures!! »

It was a full day of fun and excitement yesterday. I even got some work done. I like days like that because even if I don’t accomplish everything I want to, I made a big dent in the list and it makes me happy.

My new designs are all ready to cut, but the first order of business was to set up the final cabinet left from our reorganization and mount it to the wall. We received several cabinets for free last summer and although they were not of the highest quality, they were sturdy and in great shape. They were all painted in a dove gray which was acceptable for our bathroom the bedroom, but the final hanging one we wanted to put in the kitchen where all the cabinets were white. My partner took on the job of painting it on (as I was busy drawing the past several days) and it was dry and ready to hang.

It fit perfectly in the corner of the kitchen right above the scroll saw. It was as if it were made to go there. We certainly liked the idea of the additional storage space and we also thought we would mount some fluorescent lighting on the under side of it so that we would have a convenient light when we scrolled.

We got the cabinet up without incident, and Inspector Pancakes made sure that it was level:

From "The Project"

Once we received his approval, we installed the doors. It seems we are getting the hang of this, which is kind of scary to me!

From "The Project"

We only have one problem – what to do with that empty cabinet space?

From "The Project"

I am thinking that more tools are in order. I am sure most of you will agree :D

After purchasing two eighteen inch light fixtures, we were getting ready to mount them and kind of held them in place to see how the lighting would be. Unfortunately, the light seemed to be too high and cast a shadow on the scroll saw right on the area where the blade and table meet. This would not do.

We packed up the lights and headed out to return them. As you may have read the other day, my wish for lots of snow had come true. We were greeted with the process of digging out the car, which I suspect is why many people don’t like winter in the first place. Since there was some sleet and rain prior to the actual snow falling, there was about a inch layer of ice which encased the car under the several inches of snow. Also, the driveway had been plowed and there was a wall of heavy snow behind the cars:

It really wasn’t bad though (probably because I don’t have to do it often!) and I couldn’t help but think of the ice palace scene in the movie “Dr. Zhivago” while I was scraping through the layer of ice.

Before long, we were on the road. We went to three local places though and were unable to find suitable lighting that would work for us. We decided to wait until another day to get anything, as we didn’t want to settle for something less than useful. I can smell a trip to Yarmouth coming up in the future.

In our travels however, I came across some cordless headphones that I had been looking into getting. As you know, I live in a small place and even though we have a decent sound system, if others are home (including the land lord) I don’t like to put the music that loud when I am cutting. When I lived in Chicago, I used cordless headphones all the time when I cut, as I liked to listen to both my music and some fun talk radio shows they had. It really makes the whole process even more of a pleasure.

Since moving to Nova Scotia, I found out that my favorite talk radio personality now streams his show daily. I love to listen to it from time to time, as it makes me feel as if part of me is still there. I think he is quite amusing and I enjoy his daily show a lot and it makes the time pass quickly, especially when I am spending a long time at the scroll saw. I also love so many different kinds of music and it is great to hear it without imposing on the rest of the world.So I decided to give these headphones a try and we headed home.

I chose the wood for all four trays and laid out the patterns on the respective pieces. I did the outside cuts and the center tray cuts on everything because the next step was to router them and I knew that i needed to do that inside. I did the quick round over on each of the pieces in the bathroom and it only took a minute to roll out “the monster” (my show vac) and clean up the mess. I was so pleased! Yes, this is workable to get things done like this!

I didn’t start the actual drilling and scrolling on the first tray until almost 4pm. Another time I would have been discouraged at my late start of cutting in earnest, but with everything that was accomplished yesterday, I couldn’t help but be pleased.

I chose the bunny and egg tray first because it would probably take the longest. There was a lot of detail there and many holes to drill. This was the type of designs where the drill holes were a very big part of the decoration so I made sure to take my time and really be precise. I finished everything by seven or so and I liked how it came out:

From SLD343 Easter Bunny and Eggs Candle Tray

This has to be one of my favorite designs to date. I am also going to use the gel stain medium on this design and tint the eggs in pastel colors. The charms are going to be two rabbits, one in walnut for the chocolate bunny and the other in holly to make a white chocolate bunny. I think that will look really kind of cool.

I did have one small issue which I will be able to correct on my pattern prior to releasing the design. The piece of maple that I used for the tray was just under 1/2” thick. I had the round over router bit set a bit too deep for that thickness and it really took a bit more off the edges than I had anticipated. I route the edge before I drill the decorative beading holes, and it took a lot of concentration to not go through to the edge. I thought I would, but I was careful and lucky enough not to, although some of the holes are on the angle of the routing. You can see if you look closely on the lower left that I still need some cleaning up to do with my sanding (and how close I was – and LUCKY!)

From SLD343 Easter Bunny and Eggs Candle Tray

I will need to add an extra quarter of an inch or so to the pattern to allow some additional room for the edge of the tray. This will make it much more comfortable for people to make.

Overall though, the day was great. Working in such an organized environment is FUN! I have the other three trays all prepped for the scroll saw and I have my music ready and the last of the organization project is completed. I even have a couple of empty cabinets. Who would think that this small place would hold so much cool stuff and be so functional? I suppose that means that I will have to think of buying more tools!! (Yes, indeed!)

I know I am going to have a fun day today – and I hope you all do too.

Happy Saturday!

-- Contributing Editor, Creative Woodworks and Crafts, Sheila Landry Designs "Knowledge is Power"

12 comments so far

View KnotCurser's profile


1738 posts in 1567 days

#1 posted 1173 days ago

Very, VERY cute Easter Bunny tray! The part that impresses me the most is the ears – they look 3-D!

Good luck on the rest of the re-design!


-- Robert Rhoades WoodWorks / Email: /

View Sheila Landry (scrollgirl)'s profile

Sheila Landry (scrollgirl)

7180 posts in 1418 days

#2 posted 1173 days ago

Thank you Bob. All I need to do is to pull out the outer edge by a bit to make it a little more comfortable to drill. Sometimes on paper things are a little different than reality. That is one reason why I like to cut my own designs. I have had many generous offers from other who would cut my prototypes out for me, but I prefer to cut them myself. That way, also, when I have a customer ask me about a certain aspect of the design, I know from experience what to tell them or how to direct them.

Besides – that is the best part! :)


-- Contributing Editor, Creative Woodworks and Crafts, Sheila Landry Designs "Knowledge is Power"

View Lee A. Jesberger's profile

Lee A. Jesberger

6642 posts in 2478 days

#3 posted 1173 days ago

Hi Sheila;

Not only are you very artistic, you’re quite accomplished with the scroll saw.

Nice work.


-- by Lee A. Jesberger

View Dennisgrosen's profile


10850 posts in 1614 days

#4 posted 1173 days ago

isn´t it great to have the inspector at hand when needed …..nothing is delayed ….LOL
it deffently looks like it was build to that corner of the room :-)

what you shuold do with the space ….right .. new tools in ordre
I think there shuold be enoff room for a jointer,planer and a bandsaw…..LOL
I´m sure you already have used the space now ….no women can have an empty cabinet in the house
more than one minut :-)
sorry I just had to tease you with it , its your own foult , We only have one problem – what to do with that empty cabinet space?

one question ; have you considered to use spot´s on flex-arms to lighten the little workcorner

I like your eggs on the tray :-)

have a great day

View tyskkvinna's profile


1295 posts in 1484 days

#5 posted 1173 days ago

Wow Sheila! That looks like it took a LOT of work to cut out. The end result is well worth it, IMO. I bet it is going to look awesome painted. Also, I love the white and dark bunny idea.

-- Lis - Michigan - -

View Sheila Landry (scrollgirl)'s profile

Sheila Landry (scrollgirl)

7180 posts in 1418 days

#6 posted 1173 days ago

Dennis, Dennis, Dennis!!!!! If you don’t count tools and woodworking paraphernalia, I consider myself pretty ‘low maintenance’. I don’t collect shoes, jewelry or clothes – and my favorite ‘vacations’ are to buy lumber and go to the woodworking shows. LOL (Every guy’s ‘dream girl’! – Right??)

We do plan to build a nice router table that can be hooked up to ‘the monster’. We are really impressed how we can use the Rigid sander and make such little mess when using it with the vac.

So believe it or not, the cabinet has been up there for 21 hours and still is empty! :D

On a serious note, we are looking into the flex arm lights. That way we can swing it over to the drill press too for spot lighting when I am drilling. I have a small Ott light task lamp that I stick on the back of the scroll saw now with magnets but it still gets in the way on the bigger pieces. We want something that mounts from above.

And thanks so much, Lis. I got it cut in about two hours. It took over half an hour to drill though, as about half the details in the piece were drill holes. Brad point bits are a must!

I can’t wait to get all these done though. It will be fun to show you over the next couple of days.

Sheila :)

-- Contributing Editor, Creative Woodworks and Crafts, Sheila Landry Designs "Knowledge is Power"

View BritBoxmaker's profile


4277 posts in 1535 days

#7 posted 1173 days ago

Sheila, I wouldn’t worry about the extra space, you’ll fill it.

Between you and Steliart you’ve got me fired up about maximising use of space. I’m working on v2.0 of the bandsaw circle jig right now and am amazed how much extra space I have just turning my bandsaw 90° anti-clockwise. Once the jig is finished it may be time to rationalise the shop.

-- Martyn -- Boxologist, Pattern Juggler and Candyman of the visually challenging.

View Sheila Landry (scrollgirl)'s profile

Sheila Landry (scrollgirl)

7180 posts in 1418 days

#8 posted 1173 days ago

You’re right, Martyn! I don’t think you will hear me complaining about having too much space. (EVER!) I already have some ideas! :)


-- Contributing Editor, Creative Woodworks and Crafts, Sheila Landry Designs "Knowledge is Power"

View Sheila Landry (scrollgirl)'s profile

Sheila Landry (scrollgirl)

7180 posts in 1418 days

#9 posted 1173 days ago

That is great Martyn. You know, I always hear “a clean shop means you aren’t productive” but I don’t buy into that at all. Since I have been doing woodworking, I have always seemed to have limited space and I found that you can get a LOT out of a small space with a little organization. You don’t have to be a slob.

People come over and can’t believe that we do what we do here. Honestly, the picture of that corner in my kitchen is really ‘typical’. After I finished cutting last night, I opened those closet doors and pulled out ‘the monster’ and about three minutes later it was neat as a pin. I even mentioned to my partner that I should do a clean up video to show people how easy it is to keep things clean. You just have to put stuff back where you got it and not let it pile up.

The router table will be a challenge. I am lucky to have a larger bathroom with good floor space. It is all ceramic tile and I just pull the kitty box and the small trash can into the hall and close the door and I can route out what I need to and all I have to do is a quick vacuum clean up. Now remember, I do small projects and don’t make large furniture, but it works well for me.

Take before and after pictures of your clean up process and blog it, Martyn. I am sure you will also be an inspiration to a lot of people. :)


-- Contributing Editor, Creative Woodworks and Crafts, Sheila Landry Designs "Knowledge is Power"

View Dennisgrosen's profile


10850 posts in 1614 days

#10 posted 1173 days ago

LOL…LOL great re-sent ,and excactly the reasen of my tease …LOL

now the other thing with the monster and the routertable that sound like an interresting
solution ,I look forward to see it done :-)

here is a picture of our wire – eater and my daughter :)

have a great evening


View Sheila Landry (scrollgirl)'s profile

Sheila Landry (scrollgirl)

7180 posts in 1418 days

#11 posted 1173 days ago

You daughter is lovely! You can see the mischief in both your daughter’s and kitty’s eyes! LOL Is you cat part Siamese? I used to have a chocolate lynx siamese named Isis. She looked similar to your cat.


-- Contributing Editor, Creative Woodworks and Crafts, Sheila Landry Designs "Knowledge is Power"

View Dennisgrosen's profile


10850 posts in 1614 days

#12 posted 1172 days ago

hello Sheila
no there is no Siamese in it even thow it cuold look like that , its a Abyssinier ( the Danish word)
Abyssinian (the English word) it shuold be one of the oldes known race
here is the wikipedia site
and a little set of photo

one of more funny things about them is that the hairs is duoblecoloured every single of them

and the cat type has no fear or at least ours has no fear at all if it want to fight with other cats
or dogs nomatter the size of the other ,it has even attcked me one time when it cuoldn´t reconise me …
yep another trip around ER for me since it was my head that bleed all over , no stisches since it was
an animal that did it , so I looked funny the next month or so
yes cats deffently give memory´s …..LOL

take care

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