Archive for the ‘Materials’ Category

Fun Finds in Studio

Sunday, September 1st, 2019

Patina

Patina gone wild on bronze welding rod. Copper wire removed from handmixer remains the same.

A Forgotten Collected Pod
Milkweed

Milkweed
Milkweed

Milkweed


Patina Residue

Thursday, August 29th, 2019

Patina Residue


Who is Left/Loss Piece in Progress

Monday, August 26th, 2019

There are three wool blocks used in the piece–lightest is for spacers, tan is for dashes, and brown is for dots.

The quote is based on a Henning Mankell quote, “Who is left to connect me to my earlier life?”

Who Is Left

The removal of the safety pins is based on tap code or a 5×5 code. The code is the single word, “Loss”. An A is 1,1; L is 3,1; O is 3,4; and S is 4,3.

The image shows the removal of safety pins for the letter “S”. A single safety pin is left as a spacer between the four and three removed in the middle row.

Loss


Stones, Succulents, and Dash

Monday, June 24th, 2019

Dinking around with adding stones in the garden.

Stones

Definitely needs a better curve.

Dash noticed the changes right away.

Dash Stones


Work in Progress–Who Is Left…

Monday, June 17th, 2019

Who is Left… is a piece that has felted wool blocks stitched together with copper wire. The copper wire was removed from a mixer that caught fire.

Who Is Left

The wire replaced safety pins that I had hoped would patina green.

Who Is Left

That didn’t happen, because they weren’t bronze. They became a lovely textural brown.

Who Is Left Brown Safety Oins

Not the result I wanted, but the safety pins will find their way into a future piece.

Solution to patina pennies green
2.0 parts white vinegar
.5 parts salt (non iodized)
1.5 parts clear detergent (free of ammonia)

Solution Instructions
Spray on solution and allow to set for 1 hour. Reapply.
Allow patina to dry to green powdery finish
Patina will set permanently
Allow to set overnight.

I used Sea Salt and All Clear Free. The solution became thick and white, not a sprayable solution. I dipped the piece in the thick solution and squeezed it through the blocks.

Who Is Left

The piece was hung to drain over a plastic bin. Sprayed it multiple times with water. The detergent made a bit of foam. Suspect I will soak the piece in the morning to remove excess detergent.

Who Is Left Water Application

I wrapped the piece in plastic for the night.

Who Is Left in Plastic

Also wrapped the bin with excess solution in plastic to keep it clean for possible application tomorrow.

Now I wait.


Thoughts, Words… In Progress

Thursday, May 16th, 2019

Today I cut 330 plus pieces of hardware cloth for my Thoughts/Words… piece. The extra pieces are to replace blocks that are not quite right. Sometimes when trimming a block it is possible to break the joint. A broken joint can result in shredded fiber and make it difficult to bind the block. Also, the wire is sharp and can cause wounds.

Hardware Cloth

My gloves don’t appear too damaged.

Gloves

This is how I had my hand taped. I kept adding tape when areas felt a bit stingy. The clear plastic tape on my palm is a horrible product. It gets sticky and leaves a sticky residue after it is removed.

Hand Taped

The tools that I use to cut the hardware cloth and the removed tape.

Removed Tape

And a few blisters.

Hand Blisters

My palm tonight after a day working, making dinner, and washing dishes.

Hand This Evening

Not as annoying as a month after hand surgery. Apparently, when you are told to work as much as you feel up to, they really mean an hour a day, not 6-8 hours per day.

Blue Hand

The result was the inability to work for nearly two months. And certain activities are still challenging. Last week I had a steroid injection to break up the scar tissue. After the bruise and sting went away, my hand is behaving more like a healthy hand.

I really should have spread out the repetitive cutting of hardware. Funny how when you get in the zone, you just keep working.

So, tomorrow I will spend part of the day cutting and perforating 330 pieces of roofing felt. Maybe begin assembling the blocks.


2019 Anniversary Piece

Thursday, May 16th, 2019

Each year I make an anniversary piece, somewhat of a 3-D greeting card.

2019 Anniversary Piece

2″ x 5.25″ x .75″
1/4″ Hardware Cloth, Wool, Metal Washers, Pennies

2019 Anniversary Code Blocks

Hardware Cloth .25″ X 1.5″ x .25″
Undyed Wool–Brown Dots, Tan Dashes, Cream Spacers.

The background pieces make the code 0527.

0 is 5 Dashes; 5 is 5 Dots; 2 is 2 Dots and 3 Dashes; and 7 is 2 Dashes and 3 Dots.
3 Spacers are placed between each component of the date. Two vertical lengths of cream yarn were inserted through the blocks and bound into the frame.

This is the first time that I stacked code pieces. I really like the result. What if instead of a piece that can be held in your hand, the scale is 5 or 6 feet? Could use my stash of rope in place of yarn. Something to think about.

1983 Penny

2019 Penny


Work in Progress–Thoughts, Words, Habits, Character

Tuesday, May 14th, 2019

Thoughts become words. Words become actions. Actions become habits. Habits become character.

330 blocks–129 Dots, 97 Dashes, 104 Spacers

Thoughts Words

Debated whether to use blocks of 10 squares or 9 squares.

Thoughts Words

Dot, Dash, Spacer
Thoughts Words

Quarter inch hardware cloth, 9×9 squares, 2.25″ square blocks, with 1.75″ square of roofing felt, cream wool stitches.

Fifteen blocks per row 15 x 2.25 = 33.75″
Twenty-two rows 22 x 2.25 = 49.5″

The finished piece will be larger because the hardware cloth borders for each block will be bound with cream wool. Then the pieces will be bound together. A previous piece had 18 blocks that were 1.75″ squares. 18×1.75=31.5″ When stitched together and the addition of a couched border, the finished piece was 33.25″.

Blocks Made in Flash
A symbol for each block was made, then a symbol for each row.

Thoughts Words Blocks

Row 1 of 22
Thoughts Words Row 1

Layout Pattern
Thoughts Words Layout

The Use Count in the Flash Library is another way to verify correct layout.

Thoughts Words Use Count


Watch Yourself and Salt Residue

Tuesday, April 30th, 2019

I was rearranging my studio and ran across a beautiful salt residue from a patina used on metal bits.

Salt

Salt

Salt

I used the salt solution on metal bits from a broken veg steamer that I planned to use in the piece Watch Yourself.

Watch Yourself Parts

Why Watch Yourself? Steamers in use are too hot to touch, so be careful. Also the addition of mirror gives the viewer a peek at what they are doing.

The code on used in the piece is based on a combination of Morse and Celtic Tree Code that I used in a previous piece.

Watch Yourself Code

A salt solution was used to add some rust.

Watch Yourself Patina

Watch Yourself Patina

Watch Yourself Patina

Watch Yourself Patina

The other materials in the piece are mirror, linen, and jump rings.

Watch Yourself Patina

To Complete–application of wax, build a cedar box, nail the assembled piece inside the box using existing steamer holes.


Mistake to Neglect Testing Before Using a New Material

Wednesday, April 24th, 2019

I ordered some truly beautiful safety pins from Amazon. This is the description–Household Mall 3/4-Inch Safety Pins, Bronze (1440 Pieces).

Read through the product information and not once did it state that the safety pins were not actually bronze.

Bronze Safety Pins

I was using the second type of safety pins to suspend Who is Left on a bronze welding rod.

Bronze Safety Pins

These were not bronze because the product description states–Firefly 1000 pcs Bronze Metal Gourd Pin/Calabash Pin/Safety Pins/Bulb Pin/Bead Needle Pins/Clothing Tag Pins DIY Home Accessories.

Material: Made of metal of good quality, hard and durable, not easy to break.

So, bronze colored, not bronze.

How did I find the bronze safety pins were not actually bronze? I used them to assemble the Who is Left. After an application of a patina solution, bronze would have developed a nice blue-green patina.

Who Is Left

The bronze welding rod has developed the start of a nice blue-green patina, but not the safety pins.

Instead the result was basic rust. That would have been totally fine if the description of the safety pins had been steel. I would have anticipated the rust result.

In my excitement to use the new safety pins, I did not test the metal. Not all mistakes are a bad thing. The results can be informative and be perfect for a future project.

Who Is Left

Who Is Left

Since I am determined to add the blue-green patina staining and weeping down the piece, I removed the safety pins, row by row, and replaced them with copper wire.

That would be the copper wire I removed and saved from my hand mixer that caught fire.

Mixer Parts with Copper Wire

I assembled the blocks of each row with a twining technique. Cut a length of wire a longer than double the width of the piece. Folded the wire in half. Slipped the first wool block of the row into the folded wire, with the fold on the left side. One half of the wire was on the back of the wool block, the other half on the front. The wire was inserted through the middle of the block, back through to the front, front through to the back, then given a twist on the right side of the block.

Who Is Left

The process was repeated for the remaining 8 blocks in the row, and for the other 15 rows.

Who Is Left

Next I will twine together the verticals. I suspect that task will be a tad challenging. Then patina.

So what about the existing rust staining on the wool blocks?

Who Is Left

If, as I hope, the blue-green patina stains and weeps, the rust staining will add another layer of age to the piece.

The used safety pins will be used for a future project.

Who Is Left


Progress 04/26/19

The back wire comes through the center of the wool block to the front.

Who Is Left

The back wire comes through the center of the block to the front; the front wire goes through the front of the wool block to the back.

Who Is Left

All safety pins removed and replaced with two thicknesses of coppoer wire.

Who Is Left

Who Is Left

Next comes patina.