A Birthday Box…

m 40th bday box

This month, our talented friend Meredith decided to give a piano recital in honor of her 40th birthday and to raise money for a charity that is near and dear to her.  I offered to make a box for her to collect the donations in, and decided to stretch my creative muscles a bit.  She has a love for Arts and Crafts style, so I designed it in that vein.  It is oak, the darker wood is the homemade apple cider vinegar stain and the lighter is just the natural wood oiled.  This was a great project for me, as I really got to fly free with it and felt like I was doing really good work.

There’s nothing better for a craftsman than that feeling, that you are in control and master of the materials.  It may be fleeting… but that one afternoon in the shop where everything is going right, your skills are sharp, your mind is sharp, the design flows from your mind through your hands and into the wood…  it’s the feeling that you are on the cusp of something great, and if you just keep going and persevere then the clouds will roll away and amazing things will be there waiting for you.  That one afternoon can carry me through weeks of struggling and frustration and doubt.

In other news, I did a batch of adjustable piano footstools for kids and decided I’ll never use hardwood veneered plywood again.  The veneer was so thin, it chipped and tore no matter what combination of blades and methods and “tips and tricks” advice I tried.  It was so bad, the toothbrush I used to apply glue was causing the veneer to flake off around the edges of cuts.  Not to mention something in the plywood made me sneeze uncontrollably all day long.  So I’m done with that stuff.

We emptied out the booth at the antique mall and brought it all home this week.  Now to decide what to do with all of it.  May be building another shed to hold it all.  It was disappointing, but we’re glad to be done with it.  Have a couple of things to do for Christmas, some custom orders, and still getting my ideas together for the Ren Faire… and tomorrow it’s December!

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