Friday, April 20, 2012

Introducing a new blog

Today I want to introduce you the blog of Lucy Coles, she does amazing things with thread, knitting needles and a crochet hook.

Isn't this little doll and her clothes just too adorable?

And I just love this bear with his blue coat.

Go and check out Lucy's blog at and have a look at all her pages in the side bar as well, she has a tutorial for making this fantastic little basket.

Have a great weekend.

Monday, April 16, 2012

Chair making tips

Each chair is different and so gluing them together needs careful thought if you want to end up with a chair that has all four legs touching the floor nice and square. In my previous post I showed you the Chippendale chair, today I want to show you how different the easy chair's back is. On the pattern you  can see that the easy chair's back legs leans further over than the feet and you need to take this in consideration while gluing the back together. I stacked 3 pieces of scrap wood on top of one another to make up the difference at the chair's feet, because this chair's back are square from side to side I didn't bother with a paper pattern, I just used bigger magnets because the little ones would just slide in under the chair side posts. I normally just glue all the stretchers, etc on to one side and when that is dry the next side. I also use tape for the first side as all the pieces normally starts falling out when I add the other side to keep everything in place, I take it off as soon as I have the second side in place and then carefully puts it in the jig to dry.

In this photo is the first step in making a nicely shaped cabriole leg, they are already glued to the front stretcher, it gives you something to hold on. On the right leg you can see where I used a dowel wrapped with sandpaper to round the 4 sharp edges, right click on the photo to open it in a new tab so that you can see better, the dull parts are where I sanded the leg. Remember to also round the foot of the leg.

I use fine sandpaper or nail filing pads and fine files to finish the shaping of the leg, I hope you can see the difference between the finished and unfinished leg. You can do this to any legs that you get in a kit too.

Have a great week.

Friday, April 13, 2012

Gothic Chippendale chair: Assembling the back legs

I have started to glue the chair backs together, here you can see all the parts, this back splat still needs to be carved.

Here you can see the jig I use for gluing the chairs together, most chair sides are not square, so I asked my husband to make this one which is just a right angle without any sides, that way it is easy to use a rubber band while the glue dries. I taped my pattern on the back and line the magnets up with the  sides of the drawn back legs, these chairs have a tendency to want to pull out of shape. The back splat is just loose in place in this photo, only the seat rail and bottom stretcher has glue on it.

Next I had to make the shoe where the back splat fits in, here it is in it's jig ready to be hollowed out on the sides, the front profile has already been routed.

The first back glued together.

For all the tool and bead junkies, a friend sent me this link for a shop in New York, quite close to the hotel where I will be for 3 days in June, so I will go check them out :-)

Have a great weekend

Friday, April 6, 2012

Gothic Chippendale chair: Carving the Back Splat

When I started planning making this chair, I never realized that there was quite a lot of carving on this chair, the photo in my book is not all that clear. It is only when I did some internet research that I noticed that there was more carving detail on the back splat than what I thought. I realized that I jumped in at the deep end and will have to learn to swim fast since I haven't really done any carving before, some things that Casey and Debora has mentioned on their blogs regarding carving has stuck in my brain and I got out the craft knife and gave it a go. The chair back on the right is done, well, not quite, I see a few things in the photo on it that needs fixing.

I used a combination of diamond bits on my Dremel, my craft knife, scalpel and some very fine cut 6 jewelry files from Switzerland to do the carving with. I recently found some diamond bits and cutters from a new company in Italy, PG mini that sells smaller and different sized bits than Dremel, I always like having a big range of sizes to choose from. I am curious to see how the Mopane is going to carve in comparison to the African Black wood, this is really careful work as the back splat is only 1mm thick.