Alright everyone – get your minds out of the gutter. It gets to be rather hard thinking up over 900 unique blog titles that would peak your interest. If you are reading this far than I have done my job. And all of my bunnies are definitely ‘naked’. So we’re good.
Yesterday was a day that I suppose I could call a ‘banner day.’ It was one of those days when lots of things happened, I was terribly busy, but I accomplished a great deal. Although it was dark and stormy outside and rained most of the day, I still didn’t feel pulled down by the gloominess. I even managed to make a splendid pot of beef vegetable and barley soup for dinner (I cheated on the rolls though, and used packaged crescent rolls!) But that’s OK. I felt my time was best spent working on my projects. Besides – I like packaged crescent rolls.
I spent the morning doing some final tweaking on the pattern that I drew up the previous day. Since the piece were small, it was essential that everything be accurate. When I printed out the final copy for inspection, I wondered if I didn’t push things a little too far this time. Some of the swirls and curls looked daunting and I realized that they weren’t going to be the easiest things to cut. But every pattern can’t be for the beginners. I think that people would get bored with that. Besides – what better way to stretch your abilities than trying something that posed a bit of a challenge? So onward I went.
I chose a lovely piece of 1/4” thick maple for the design. It was about 6” wide and had a beautiful and tight, even grain. That would work well with the gentle swirls and hold the design well. Many people don’t realize the importance of choosing the type of wood they plan to use for their projects. I feel that it is especially important to carefully pick a wood type that is suitable to the intricacy of the design. It gives you a better chance of succeeding.
I laid out my ten bunny pattern pieces on the board and it took up exactly half the length. This was perfect, as I planned to cut these pieces two layers deep. I have several variations in mind for these pieces and it certainly wouldn’t hurt to cut an additional set. Besides – cutting through two thicknesses of 1/4” maple would give me the precise control that I would need to accomplish this design comfortably. It was meant to be.
As usual, I tried to choose the most difficult piece to begin cutting. My philosophy on that is that if it is going to fail, I want to know early on before I waste additional time and wood finding out. If I can accomplish the hardest piece, then the rest of them would be easy. Right?
I drilled all the decorative holes first, and then the entry holes:
I needed one of my really small bits to drill the holes for the design, as many of the cut-outs are just thin slices. But I like the way that looks and I think it adds to the beauty of the piece and makes the design ‘flow.’
I used my smallest blade for the job (the reverse tooth 2/0) and I found it did a wonderful job. I was also happy that I stacked these pieces, as the amount of resistance was just perfect. Cutting them was actually very relaxing and as I sat there at the saw with my headphones playing some of my favorite music, I was truly in my ‘happy place.’
All went well and there were no boo-boos. I did need to adjust just a couple of lines, as looking at them on the table of the scroll saw was certainly a bit different than looking at them magnified 1200 times on my computer screen, but the adjustments were negligible and the design looked no worse for the changes.
As I finished each piece and peeled off the pattern, I felt more confident about my ideas concerning these shapes. I have lots planned for them in different variations, and this is only the beginning. And it is a good one at that.
I had to switch gears for a while when finished cutting them. I had found out that the Artist’s Club had accepted my Haunted Halloween Mask ornaments for their catalog and I needed to cut a couple of kits out and get them shipped out tomorrow. As usual, the deadlines are tight and I am grateful that I had them nearly ready to go out the door, hoping that my submission would be accepted. This would insure us at least some production work over the slower summer season and came as a bit of a relief (Yes! I do worry when I submit that things won’t be accepted!)
While I was at cutting the kits, I also decided to cut several sets of these bunnies in silhouette form (without the inside cuts) for additional projects. I have a couple of ideas for them for the painters too, and I needed a couple of sets to experiment with.
It was exactly 10:02 when I finally sat down with my tea to relax last night. I was going to leave the sanding of the bunnies until today, but I just was too excited and wanted to see how they looked. So here they are – sanded and naked and ready for the next step:
I apologize again for the low res picture, but apparently it must be done :(
But they aren’t finished yet!
I have several nice plans for these happy little spring bunnies. The scrolled in details are just the beginning.
They are ‘naked’ now and ready to get all dolled up for spring. And I have a couple of great variations that will make these darling little bunnies quite versatile. (Can you tell I am excited?)
So that will be all for today. I will end with a quote that I saw on Facebook this morning. I read it and thought that it was quite fitting for the place that I am in now with my designing. Here you go:
”The more you love your decisions, the less you need others to love them.”
I tried to find the source of the quote, but it came up as “Unknown.” But in thinking about it, there is really a lot of truth in that. I find that my best designs are the ones that I do for myself, from my heart. The rest usually just falls into place.
The sun is shining today and there are only a couple of small piles of snow left to melt. I have the window cracked open and I can smell the fresh air of spring. It’s going to be a beautiful day.
I wish you all a beautiful day also!
-- Designer/Artist/Teacher. Owner of Sheila Landry Designs (http://www.sheilalandrydesigns.com) Scroll saw, wood working and painting patterns and surfaces. "Knowledge is Power"