Sunday, 25 August 2013

Trials and Tribulations

In the five or so weeks since my last post I've continued to experiment with credenza styles. Not so much the shape, but the door fronts and legs.The laser cutter is proving to be far more capable than me. With some technology, the only limitations are the imagination of the user. The learning curve is growing ever steeper but I'm managing to drag myself up there by my fingernails. I so wish I had payed more attention to computer studies class at school.

So I've been trying out some new fretwork designs.


The two above are cut-through fretwork doors. Below, the design is just etched into the laminate surface



The legs are aluminium angle cut into 6mm slices. I was persuaded to try it after seeing the ballsy Mad for Mod making big with the power tools. This was the start of the trials and tribulations I mentioned in my post title. First, in a moment of utter stupidity, I cut the aluminium without wearing glasses. A sliver of metal flicked up into my eye and left me cursing my own recklessness. That day ended with me watching Warm Bodies (which is très funny by the way), munching through a half kilo box of banana flavoured toffee, all with no depth perception. Next day, blurry eyed, I returned to cutting and managed to bend the angle stop on my saw. Geeez! You know there are three occasions when you shouldn't use machinery...when you're tired, when you're grumpy and when you've been drinking alcohol. I've done all three - sometimes together - and believe me, the outcome is never good...ergo the bent angle stop.

 
The last two are simple designs but I liked the bright colour contrasting with the wood. I think I'll call those angle aluminium legs 'Renfroe' since I'm almost positive it was Paris Renfroe who had the design savvy to use this idea first.

You know it took me an age to balance that 20 pence piece on the top ha-ha

I also wanted to resolve something that has, for a long time, niggled at my conscience. I hate to waste materials. Wood, especially, is becoming a rare commodity. Wood sheet that you buy from the hobby shops tend to be in three inch wide sheets which is great if your building three inch wide furniture. I seem to have an abundance of 15 - 20 mm strips which are too narrow for anything. My solution was to cut a wave into one edge and then glue the strips, offset, one on top of the other.
 



I guess you would call it basket weave. Though the doors are 'dummy' and can't be opened, I do like the texture it adds to the credenza.

I bought a magazine I don't normally buy because it had a piece about designing furniture and getting the dimensions right. The magazine is Fine Wood Working - how to design furniture if you want to buy it. Rather than infringe the magazine's copyright, here's a link to a pdf showing standard furniture dimensions. It's really helpful if you're making your own scale miniature furniture and need guidelines. 

Hm, what else have I been up to? I met up with some friends recently. My mate from the Netherlands, Josephine,  has just the coolest Dad. He's pretty clever with small electrical stuff and decided to build me a tiny Radio receiver that fits into the miniature Cathedral radios that I make. Thank you Mans, the radio literally rock and rolls now!


Okay, that's enough from me. I'm off to get Sunday Lunch with my nearest and dearest.

Have a great weekend all

Pepper =0)

42 comments:

  1. Dear Pepper,
    Thanks for sharing your projects. I love that PDF file. Thank you.
    May I refer to your blog in my blog ?
    Greetings Dorien

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    1. Thank you Dorien and of course you can link to my blog. You're now on my 'cool blogs to visit' link =0)

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  2. Great furniture, as always Pepper, I particularly like the fret ones, and the radio is super cute. The eye story, is a tad scary! that would have been awful if........ ahhhhhhhh please wear your glasses at all times :D Been there, done that, I fear my dremel tool now :D

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    1. Thank you Sarah. I will certainly take more care in future. You only have one pair of eyes right? =0)

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  3. Hi Carol, your fretwork panels are simply beautiful i have no doubt these wont be the last we see, the basket weave pattern you have created is also brilliant and as you said a great idea for using those pieces of timber that usually get cast aside, a wall would look rather cool in this design.Nice to here you finally got the the tiny radios to work :)

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    1. Hey there Tony. You know you're right. A wall would look pretty amazing with that textured weave look =0)

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  4. Hi Pepper, thank you so much for your post. Your work is outstanding. The furniture you are showing in this and your former post reminds me of dutch modern design in the fifty's/sixties; "Pastoe". Your own miniature furniture has the same elegancy. How great your radio is really working now!!!
    But please be careful with yourself while working with your tools and machines! Have a nice (and safe!) sunday :-)
    Hugs, Liduina

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    1. Thank you Luduina. Your work is pretty amazing too =0) I'll have to have a look at the 'Pastoe' range, sounds cool

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  5. I'm stunned at the beauty here, my dear Pepper. Truly, truly lovely. Please continue!!!

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  6. Beautiful work, I really am in love with your credenzas and furniture, Pepper, it is outstanding work, like Liduina says! How lovely that the father of your mate gave your miniature radio his own sound/music, I wish I could come to listen to that extraordinary radio of you ;)!!
    Thank you for sharing the PDF and the links, I'll go and visit them!
    And Carol, please, take good care for your safety whilst working with your machines!!!! 12 years ago I thought in between to cut a small little piece of wood.....yep, deep into the top of my left thumb, ouch!! The doctor sewed it all together, so now I am not afraid of working with machines but I try to work as safely as possible with those small but also "killing" machines!
    Have a great weekend and it is good to see you're working on your miniatures again:D!! Hugs, Ilona

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    1. Thank you so much IIona. Ouch, that thumb accident sounds pretty painful. I have to remind myself that even though my machines are hobby size, they can still do a lot of damage =0)

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  7. Dear Carol
    Your Aluminum circle pattern and the bright color options are simply a beauty.
    I also like the weaving pattern very much .
    On the whole every thing you show is so impeccable!!!!!!!!
    All the best
    Neomi

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  8. WOW Pepper! That fretwork is fantastic. Thank goodness for laser cutter machines. Congratulations on your working radio. How WONDERFUL!

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    1. Thank you Catherine, you're very kind =0)

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  9. I hope you're all healed up, and yes please be more careful T_T everything looks amazingggggg (your usual standard hawhaw) and am super tickled by your mini working radio!! Keep them mice entertained!!! :P

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    1. No real harm done, just a bit sore for a while. Ha, that would be awesome if the mice had a party on a night time, listening to the radio =0D

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  10. That's a lot of experimenting! You're going to end up with quite a collection :) I'm sorry to hear about your machine troubles personally its my least favourite part, its always more enjoyable when everything is finally cut and I'm left to assemble. The pieces are really gorgeous, I especially like the basket weave piece.
    Always happy to see a new post from you,
    Kristine

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    1. Thank you Kristine. I already have a shelf full of credenzas...I just love to try new ideas =0)

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  11. You are very very talented. I love ALL of your credenzas! I want to know more about that little radio...it really works!?

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    1. Hey there Grandmommy. Yes, the radio does work. Mans made this teeny speaker and all the workings that can fit inside. The battery to power it has to go on the outside, hidden from view. He really is a cool man! =0)

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  12. O'my...The eye thing is scary, please have glasses!
    I Love all your beautiful works, the ones with bright colours are my favourites!
    And the working radio is so amazing! ...even the idea of one like that is so cool!
    Hugs
    Kikka

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    1. Thank you Kikka. I will certainly use my glasses from now on =0)

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  13. Lady, you are one talented artist!!!! These are incredible especially that basket weave one...stunning! I don't think I've been called ballsy before, but I kind of like it! You're right about Paris being the first one with the idea for the legs.

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    1. Oh, Glad you can still see. Be sure to wear those safety glasses!

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    2. Thank you so much M4M. Yeah, I think I would describe you as ballsy. I reckon you're one of those cool chicks that dive right in and nothing phases you. You certainly inspire me =0)

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  14. Beautiful work, as usual.

    And thank you for the timely reminder about safety glasses. For the past few months I've been meaning to get some: then, whenever I'm at the hardware store, find myself standing in the middle of the entrance trying to remember what else it was that I'd been meaning to pick up while I was there: and going home empty handed...

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    1. Thanks TSS. You should really, really have glasses the amount of kit bashing and painting you do. Don't want to hear of any hospital visits from you, okay? =0)

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  15. Hello Pepper,
    Everything is so beautiful, but I
    am blown away by the first 2 pictures. The cut-outs are so intricate and I just love the design. Incredible work! The Radio is fantastic!
    Big hug,
    Giac

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    1. Hi Giac,
      you know it's amazing how fine the laser can cut. The fretwork is only 1mm thick yet still has a lot of strength. It's something I could never do by hand. =0)

      xx

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  16. many thanks for the link,I've already downloaded it: it will be very helpful....
    The solution for weaving strips is genial!!! Thanks again ciao ciao Franca

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    1. Thank you so much Franca. Glad you like them =0)

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  17. I think something is wrong with this site. I keep trying to add these items into my shopping cart, but they won't go...
    Beautiful work, Pepper! You are such a stylish, banana-toffee eating vixen of craftsmanship! How's that for a description? :) You make me smile, man.

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    1. You make me laugh pretty Lady. I've been called a few things in my time but never a banana-toffee eating vixen of craftsmanship. Do you think it would be too much to change my name to that by Deed Poll? =0)

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  18. HI Pepper! I think that there is no difference between the quality of the Real McCoy credenzas and your miniature versions! Yours look spot on and without the coin perched on the surface, one would not be able to distinguished the full-sized from yours! Superb craftsmanship, Pepper! I am most intrigued by the basket weave pattern because I love the texture of it but they are all MARVELOUS! I can entirely relate to not taking the proper precautions when diving head first into something that needs safety glasses and what a close call you had. I haven't ever had to pay with the loss of sight, but I Have eaten a full liter of ice-cream to make myself feel better after mis cutting Foam Core Board. That turned out to be very tragic for my waistline, which has never been the same since! :D

    elizabeth

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    1. Wow Elizabeth. Thank you so much for the compliment. I think comfort food and bad experiences with miniature making go so well together. I can totally relate to the disappearing waistline =0)

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  19. Well that's a handy PDF. Much easier than sitting in the middle of room measuring the furniture while my family stares at me. XD

    And I love how you used those wave cut pieces to make more furniture.
    I know what you mean about not wanting to waste anything, I have a bag full of scraps, that was a clever way to reuse those extra bits. :)

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    1. Thanks Kyle. I can't tell you how many times I've gone into IKEA to measure something and get an odd look from passers-by =0)

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  20. HI Pepper!

    I think that your miniature credenzas show that you know how to do amazing craftsmanship.
    the basket weave pattern is gorgeous and I love the texture of it but the ones with the laminate doors are marvelous and definitely my favorite! I must agree with Modern MC and beg you to starts selling these beauties as quick as possible and as for the snacking just make sure that those banana-toffee’s don get you to lose your eye sight! Cause that would be a catastrophe.!


    Love Mandy

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  21. The colourful, bright ones are my fav! :) Big hugs from Sweden! :D

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  22. Oh Queen of Miniatures I bow to your talent and skill. So now your asking.....what does she want? I love the fretwork credenza I was wondering how it would look in 1/6 scale? Hint.....hint...
    My Barbie is drooling.....
    :)
    DiAnn

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