My Journey As A Creative Designer - Woodworking and Beyond #279: Planning is Part of the Fun!

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Blog entry by Sheila Landry (scrollgirl) posted 03-09-2011 02:31 PM 3810 reads 0 times favorited 3 comments Add to Favorites Watch
« Part 278: Still Crunching Part 279 of My Journey As A Creative Designer - Woodworking and Beyond series Part 280: Good Days/Busy Days »

Well, I am happy to report that I am finished compiling the information that I need to get to my accountant to do my taxes. It really wasn’t that bad, because I had all the things in one place. Now next year I need to go a step better and do monthly reports to keep on top of everything. It shouldn’t be very difficult because I really am what you call a ‘small business’ and I don’t have that much activity. With the new site, tracking sales is not difficult at all and I am able to run reports very easily. I also have it set up that my wholesalers send me monthly reports by email so everything is on my computer. I do all my banking online too, so that is easy to store and retrieve.

I have been following Big Tiny’s blog on financial planning and although I had been doing many of the things he suggested, there is still room for improvement. Somehow knowing that I wasn’t too far off base gives me some inspiration to do even better. I really appreciate his blog and his willingness to share his expertise on the subject. I find that there are so many people willing to help each other here at LJ’s and really am glad I found this place.

So it is on to more planning and getting ready for the show.

I found out yesterday that both of my scroll saw classes are nearly sold out. That was great news. I am teaching one on Wednesday, April 6th and Saturday April 9th. I had initially intended on leaving to come home on the 9th, but since there was so much interest in the show, we thought it would be fine to stay another day. On Thursday and Friday I plan on teaching two painting classes. These classes are only 3 hours long each though, so I offered the possibility of teaching them both on the same day and then putting in a third scroll saw class on either Thursday or Friday. As long as there is interest, I will be willing to teach.

In talking to the director of the classes, he informed me that he didn’t start to promote the painting class yet and will be doing so later this week, so there was still time to make these changes to the schedule. I think it would work out nicely if possible. He also told me that without any promotion at all, he has members that want to sign up for the painting class. That is a good sign right there. As I said before, it wouldn’t matter if I had five people or twenty, I will enjoy doing the class anyway. The non-business part of me likes having small classes because I get to spend a lot of time with each individual student. But having up to 20 people is still a decent number considering the difficulty of the project that I am presenting. I think that the students will be able to grasp everything pretty well in that time frame, and if they need some extra coaching, there will be time after the class for me to do so. These aren’t difficult concepts that I am teaching, as they are just the first steps on the path. Yet when put together, they will allow the students to have a good base to learn further.

The scroll sawing class is really coming together nicely. We aren’t going to be doing just the project. We have developed some great practice exercises to show many different techniques of scroll sawing like cutting circles, turns, acute and obtuse angles, casting on to the piece and many other aspects that they will encounter in many different kinds of projects. I want them to walk away from this class also with a good foundation and feel good about trying to do other scroll saw projects.

We even are going to offer a short exercise on using spiral blades to cut portraits. With spiral blades, you are able to cut the pieces in any direction without turning the pieces, as the blades are twisted so that there are teeth on all sides. My partner Keith uses these blades when he does his portrait style pieces, and he will be helping demonstrate some of the basics for this method.

I love having the eight hour time frame for these classes because it will really give me a chance to interact with each of the ten students and spend some time with them. Besides scroll sawing the project, I am also going to teach the application of the stain using the acrylic paints and the Antiquing and Staining gel. This is something that few people have probably used before and I believe that it will offer a new way of staining and finishing that they can apply to other projects. I am confident that everyone will leave the class knowing a little more than they came in with and at the very least have a nice project to take home with them.

So all is well here in Nova Scotia today. The sun is out and there is little evidence of snow left. As much as I love the snow, it is time for it to be done with and hopefully we will have dry pavement to travel on.

I am going to be a bit antsy for the next two weeks, getting everything ready to leave. I can’t see myself designing anything new, as I have so many little details to check and recheck regarding the trip. I feel odd at this point and a bit unsettled, but not in a bad way at all. As each puzzle piece falls into place, I feel more confidence in myself and also that we are all going to have a wonderful time. As each day goes by, I am feeling fore and more excited about all of the aspects of this trip.

So much to do, so many people to see and so much fun to have! I am a very fortunate girl! I am finding out that not only am I going to enjoy the trip itself, but that half of the fun is in the planning and preparation. And of course the anticipation!

I hope you all have a wonderful Wednesday!

-- Designer/Artist/Teacher. Owner of Sheila Landry Designs ( Scroll saw, wood working and painting patterns and surfaces. "Knowledge is Power"

3 comments so far

View BigTiny's profile


1676 posts in 2889 days

#1 posted 03-09-2011 08:46 PM

Hi Sheila.

Since your students will be doing staining, I hope you have enough disposable plastic gloves so they don’t go home with hands to match the projects. :)

-- The nicer the nice, the higher the price!

View SallySpiral's profile


5 posts in 2813 days

#2 posted 03-09-2011 10:56 PM

Counting down the days and I am the one who is in the whirlwind! So much to do! I think i can hire a team and still not be ready!
As for the snow … We still have snowbanks over the top of the car and the snow “in the yard” is even with the top of the garden gate. Yes we have gotten hammered! Any other year we have one storm in March (sugar snow to make the maple sap run), but we may be collecting sap in June this year. And the idea of you having your own “house” here by using the camper – well….... Billy says No to snowblowing it out LOL
I have so much “finishing” stuff to show you that I have learned in the last few weeks – I should never have taken the course with Giles Gilson – he created a monster!
I am so pleased with the classes! I felt we were losing our growing momentum with regards to scrolling, but since it was annouced you would be a the SHow, our area has seen a 100% regrowth & the response to the classes is further proof. You will absolutely love the “Learning Center” – not only does it have multiples of every tool imaginable but more importantly members who are willing to show anyone what ever knowledge they have. You can’t walk thru the doors without going WOW!

Rest up cause for 3 weeks it is going to be a whilrwind!

-- Jeannie, Adirondack Mts.

View Sheila Landry (scrollgirl)'s profile

Sheila Landry (scrollgirl)

9228 posts in 2921 days

#3 posted 03-10-2011 01:17 PM

Hi, Paul – The staining we are going to do is with acrylic paint and a clear acrylic gel called Staining and Antiquing Medium. We are only going to stain the tops of the various leaves and will be covering a small area. As with most acrylic paint, it is odorless and will clean up very easily with soap and water. There really is no need for gloves when using the products.

And Jeannie – I am also very thrilled to be able to be involved in such a wonderful show and organization. We were talking about it yesterday and I was saying how I never could have imagined how much fun this whole thing could have been. And I haven’t haven’t even left the house yet! I am so anxious to meet all the people and see the center and do the classes. Everything is going to be so much fun! I really can’t thank you enough for nominating me to do this! :)


-- Designer/Artist/Teacher. Owner of Sheila Landry Designs ( Scroll saw, wood working and painting patterns and surfaces. "Knowledge is Power"

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