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My Journey As A Creative Designer - Woodworking and Beyond #1480: If First You Don't Succeed . . .

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Blog entry by Sheila Landry (scrollgirl) posted 01-21-2015 01:21 PM 2076 reads 1 time favorited 8 comments Add to Favorites Watch
« Part 1479: New Printers! Part 1480 of My Journey As A Creative Designer - Woodworking and Beyond series Part 1481: Some More New Designs »

I always like sharing my triumphs here on the blog. It feels great to accomplish something positive and be able to share it with you all, my readers. But sometimes when I do something, it doesn't work out exactly as I have planned. (I know! Hard to believe, right???) I never mind telling you all about those times either though because I really want people to understand that being successful does NOT mean having everything work out perfectly every time. Anyone who tells you different is lying. We all stumble from time to time and we all have our successes and failures. 



I think that admitting that we did something wrong and adjusting or trying again is part of every designing process. No matter how well thought out an idea may be, the actual implementation of that idea is what really is important. Things may look fine and good on paper, but once one actually makes the build or paints the picture, it may not be quite as one expected. 



Such is what happened to me yesterday. 



Now it isn't a really big deal and certainly one that can be fixed, but it is bothersome enough to me to feel really HAPPY that I like to cut my own prototypes and asses my designs myself. In order for me to feel really good and confident about the designs I am offering, I like to actually make them. Now I know that sometimes on flat plaques and things I rely on the computer to create the pictures for the patterns (and I see nothing wrong with that in certain circumstances – like when I am making a plaque) but especially when I am building a three dimensional piece, I really like to cut it myself so I can really make sure my drawings and all are correct.  Besides – I like cutting. 



Yesterday I finished cutting my SLD489 Layered Heart Damask Boxes (the link won't work until I post the product in a couple of days) and I lovingly sanded and finished it using several coats of spry shellac. I love the way the maple and walnut looked when finished with shellac. The soft sheen really brings out the grain without looking plastic-y. In between things, I worked on transferring files and setting up my new hard drive on my computer. For the past several days I had been waiting for the drive to arrive and things were just 'out of place'.  



I was getting ready to glue the pieces together for the rings of the boxes last night when I dry fit them together and something struck me – the box was too "tall". :(



You may not see it here, but it definitely looked too tall for the width. When I pulled out the top trim ring (the walnut one) I liked the look of the box much better:



Here is a picture of it with my hand in so you can see the size:



I liked that much better.  However, if I were to pul one of the rings out of the center (which I need to do because the bottom is solid and the top is the trim ring with a smooth and routed edge) than the color sequence of the maple and walnut pieces would look out of whack. It just wouldn't be what I envisioned. 



Now there are many solutions to this problem to choose.  I could just allow the two walnut pieces to be on the top two layers and keep the two maple on the bottom. I could use all five layers, but cut them from thinner wood (maybe planed to 1/4" instead of 3/8ths. or I could simply re-cut the walnut ring and have the three side pieces done in maple and only the trim ring in the accent walnut color. I think I will choose the third option. 



Of course, I am sure I will get many different opinions as to which one to choose. I find that people are as diverse as the options presented to them. But my own personal taste is what I will follow on this one, as I need to feel good about what I am doing and I really think this will be more attractive. So it is back to the saw for me today. 



On the 'good news' side, I think the box came out really beautiful. The two options for the lids are shown here:



One option is to make the lid entirely patterned in the Damask design. The other is a monogram. The pattern will include the entire alphabet, and I also included the lower case lettering so that my customers can use it with other projects. 



I am finishing this up today as well as the other heart-themed project. Hopefully I will be able to get the patterns together today as well. We will just have to see how it goes. 



In closing today, I want to show you some photos from Sergio Marsala who is a customer. He used Keith's SLDK315 Family Plaque Design and a re-purposed headboard to make a wonderful deacon's bench:



At the top and center of the back of the bench, it added Keith's Family plaque:



After building the base, he added the seat:




And then painted it with chalky finish paint for a distressed look:



It makes a beautiful piece for an entryway or anywhere:



Both Keith and I love seeing others use our designs in this way. It is great to see that our customers are using our patterns for their own unique designs and applications. I wanted to share it with you all so that it may inspire you to also think of other ways you can use your own patterns. I think it is lovely. 



Well, that will be all for today. It is snowing large flakes out today and a bit grey. The rain from the past few days had wiped the landscape of snow and it we were due to have more fall. But I don't mind. Besides my quick trip to the post office, I can stay inside here and work. It will be a good day. 



I wish you all a wonderful Wednesday. Be happy and do something fun and creative!

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



8 comments so far

View Celticscroller's profile

Celticscroller

1217 posts in 1539 days


#1 posted 01-22-2015 12:01 AM

Love the deacon’s bench. What a great idea incorporating Keith’s plaque.
Your box looks great. Does it look too tall because the top trim ring isn’t notched? Would it look OK with the top walnut ring notched? Love the damask patterns on the lids.

-- Anna http://richmondcarvers.com/

View Sheila Landry (scrollgirl)'s profile

Sheila Landry (scrollgirl)

9041 posts in 2386 days


#2 posted 01-22-2015 12:13 AM

Hi, Anna:
I don’t know if notching the trim ring would improve it or not. I kind of like the idea of having the top ring smooth as it finishes off the edge. Keith however, thinks it should also be notched. We usually think opposite on things like this so I am not surprised at that at all! :)

I played around with it this afternoon and re-cut one of the pieces to make it one level shorter. I like that look better although it could certainly be taller if one likes it that way. That is part of the joy of these little boxes – they can be put together with any material you like – thick or thinner, as many levels or species of wood. They are super easy to personalize and great for using smaller pieces.

The bench is wonderful! I loved seeing it too and I hope it inspires some of you to think in other ways about things.

Thank you for your thoughts on this! I always appreciate different opinions. :)

Have a great night – Sheila

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

View Roger's profile

Roger

19883 posts in 2270 days


#3 posted 01-22-2015 01:35 PM

I like the 5 layer box also. The bench is very nicely done as well.

-- Roger from KY. Work/Play/Travel Safe. Keep your dust collector fed. Kentuk55@yahoo.com

View Sheila Landry (scrollgirl)'s profile

Sheila Landry (scrollgirl)

9041 posts in 2386 days


#4 posted 01-22-2015 01:37 PM

Thanks, Roger. :) No blog today. I am running too much to catch up. But I appreciate your kind comments.

Have a great day! Sheila

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

View HillbillyShooter's profile

HillbillyShooter

5811 posts in 1759 days


#5 posted 01-22-2015 04:06 PM

Really like your 5-layer, heart box! That is something my wife would love. Let us know when it’s available—I may have to rearrange my “bucket list” and do it after I finish up a batch of dragons I doing for charity and my nieces and nephews.

-- John C. -- "Firearms are second only to the Constitution in importance; they are the peoples' liberty's teeth." George Washington

View Sheila Landry (scrollgirl)'s profile

Sheila Landry (scrollgirl)

9041 posts in 2386 days


#6 posted 01-22-2015 07:25 PM

Thank you, John:
I should have finished photos tomorrow. I am working on finishing up the pattern packet today. I am glad you like it. I see several new boxes like this in the making . . . ;)

Sheila

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

View BritBoxmaker's profile

BritBoxmaker

4607 posts in 2503 days


#7 posted 01-23-2015 11:14 AM

Sorry I haven’t commented earlier but I’m suffering a bad cold (I’m told it could be Man-Flu but I’m too weak to argue).

I very much like the layer box, Sheila. A good conclusion. I also suffer the sort of dilemma that you went through with this design.

I also find that things don’t always go right and indeed if they go right easily I often conclude that I’m not challenging myself enough. My conclusion being that only through risking failure can you hope to progress.

-- Martyn -- Boxologist, Pattern Juggler and Candyman of the visually challenging. http://www.theartofboxes.com

View Sheila Landry (scrollgirl)'s profile

Sheila Landry (scrollgirl)

9041 posts in 2386 days


#8 posted 01-23-2015 02:23 PM

Hi, Martyn:
I am sorry to hear you have cold. I was kind of coming down with one last week, but I think I caught it before it got more severe.

Thank you for your kind words. You know I admire your boxes so much. I have had many customers ask for more box patterns and I really do enjoy doing them. This ‘weave’ type side is very easy (and fun) to do on the scroll saw so I think I will make several new patterns. Making them different can be a little challenging though. I agree that we need to do that to grow as designers. :)

Have a good weekend and feel better soon.

Sheila

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

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