Monday, May 6, 2013

Something New

I've learned to not take custom requests. Oh, I'll change a piggy's shirt from blue to red, or I'll give you one animal, not two - but I get quite a few inquiries that start, "I love your work, can you do  _______?".  It's fraught with peril. I worry so that my vision is nothing like the clients. It also takes me an unreasonably long time to design. Trial and error seems to be my method and I hate to send something out that I'm not in love with.  But. . . I got an email from a lovely mum who had purchased one of my Noah's Arks last year. She was looking for a farm/barn set that used the same size animals as the arks and wondered, "can you do it?"  I just so had a barn in the unpainted state that I'd been thinking of before Christmas.  So I told her I could finish it up for her. Usually our "first editions" go to our own kiddlets.

 Some of you may not know that I have a big helper. The BLHubby does a lot of the building of the basic Ark boat. He also is responsible for the 3 Pigs houses. For some reason I make the 3 Bears houses All the animals and bookends I do all the woodwork. I always do all sanding and of course  the painting. If I could get a helper elf I would put him to work sanding.

 He handles the stuff that is cut on the big mean table saw. For some reason that saw and I don't like each other. It's sad. I"m all for ladies and power tools. I can use most all of them. But I've had a few mishaps with the big saw (kick backs that throw big pieces of wood right at my chest and bend the blades) and I'm a little gun shy. This barn is a good illustration of how BLHubbs and I work together. He works in manufacturing and is all about reproducing things exactly. He thinks about how to cut things out so the wood won't be wasted. When I wanted a barn he calculated angles and roof lines. I then say things like "It's too wide" or "can you do one a little taller?" and he without grumbling too much will do it. We struggled with the roof. It took a bunch of angled cuts to roof it and I didn't like how it looked or felt.  Then I come in and hold a piece of wood against something and think "that's about right" and I cut it out with the scroll saw. If it doesn't fit I sand it down.   I glued some roof "shingles" on the top of BLH's roof and I liked how it turned out.  We work well together.

 This was fun to finish. I've been slow to put it into my regular line up of items but this has been a bit of a struggle to get my head around. I think we'll do some "tweaks" and a few changes. It uses the same size animals as the Noah's Arks but I think a farm needs baby's. I did get some baby piggies.

There are hay bales, well, straw bales, that go with it, too.
 So glad to see this done and off to some little boys.


  1. The #stephanies are coming to town (McCratic & buckley) so let's have a Central Arkansas Blogger...

  2. All of your lovely wooden toys are so precious - makes me wish my 17 and 22 year olds were closer to marrying and grandchildren!!!

  3. Oh my goodness! I LOVE THIS little barn!So Stinking adorable.