Wednesday, May 17, 2006

Another Hot Day

But not quite as hot as yesterday when we broke lots of records for May 16. Still really warm though! Not complaining, honest! I got up at 6 am and started in on the attic space before it got too hot. I managed to get it cleaned out and all the equipment photographed plus some more stuff that was scattered about. I’ve made a good start on the inventory, though there’s lots more to do still. I already have all my books and magazines inventoried, plus a whole lot (most?) of my spinning fibre. Not my yarns or fabrics though. I find that just a little daunting. Downright scary in fact. It may never happen.

OK, the Finished Object I promised yesterday. It was really a lot of fun to do and used a number of different craft skills. Remember the little white lunch box? Now it looks like this:

First I masked off the top and bottom and the handle with plastic wrap and masking tape. Then I spray painted it with several coats of a copper paint with a hammered look. (We used it for our hinges and other metal bits when we were renovating the kitchen last year.) After it dried for several days (to make sure it was hardened properly), I started on the decoupage. I used rust and black paper plus 3 different paste papers that I made with my Spectrum study group. I kind of followed a quilting technique where you start with a 5-sided piece and then add more pieces to the edges of the first piece, cutting them off as you go. Since this is paper and not cloth that could be stitched and I wanted the “seams” to be butted together, I used repositionable tape to hold the pieces together. I continued to add new paper pieces, cutting them with a ruler and my “paper” rotary blade, until it was the right size for the top of the box. I used scissors to trim the curves on the corners. I painted the top with a coat of matte Mod Podge using a foam brush and then covered the back of the paper (still taped together) with it. Then I put the paper on top of the box and smoothed it into place, removing the tape as I went. When it was all snuggled down I coated the top of the paper with another coat of Mod Podge. After it dried I gave it a couple more coats and then a couple of coats of semi-gloss Flecto Diamond Varathane to make it more durable and waterproof. I repeated the whole thing with the bottom of the box. The pattern came out differently since I wasn’t planning on a match, but a coordinating look. I did start with the same rust-colour paper in the middle though. On the inside, I put a magnet for following a graph pattern or holding a needle in the lid and a padded bottom so my knitting won’t rattle around. I used a really pretty piece of Chinese jacquard silk/rayon with blue dragons on a copper background. I serged the edges of the silk and laced it with nylon thread over a piece of lightweight batting and a piece of matboard. Then I used a loop of packing tape sticky-side-out to secure the whole thing into the bottom of the box. It might come unstuck eventually but it can be easily removed to clean lint or threads and replaced with a fresh piece of tape. And there you have it!

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