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Workshops and Garages

My goodness, what a weekend.

Neither one of us got off to a good start on Saturday morning. My bedroom fan decided to emit a scalded-pig type squeal from its bearings at somewhere about 5:00am, waking me up from a sound sleep. I managed to turn it off and fall back to sleep, which is why I never heard the TV turn itself on at 6:00am – I forgot to turn its alarm off. That woke Bob up. So I woke up with my alarm at 8:00, and he didn’t move. I got the place tidied up, Charlotte dressed and fed, and rousted him out in time to be caffeinated and presentable by the time folks started showing up for the workshops.

I would say that it was a successful day. We had a rehash of an ongoing early Norse shoe workshop that’s been going for the last few months, mostly for my benefit. I was concentrating on the one piece pattern, and it is SO cool. I’ve promised period shoes for isabeau_lark ’s niece, and this is going to be a good pattern to start with. I’ll be interested to see what she (the niece) thinks of them – they are necessarily made out of very thin leather, and as we discussed on Saturday, you have to walk much differently in period turned shoes on leather soles than we do in modern shoes on hard soles. But these are going to be very doable – I’ll just need a quality hour or two with her feet to make the pattern. It’s also going to allow me to keep Charlotte in authentic shoes while she grows for mere pennies. This is a good thing.

Okay, yes, I’m unreasonably excited about this, but it’s SO nifty. Shoes are hard when you’ve decided to go the authenticity route. Or expensive, and I’m back to having more time available than money. So now I have to get to Tandy Leather and buy myself some shoe leather. The lightest I’ve got right now is about 4-5 oz for *my* shoe uppers, and I want a lighter weight – at least for Charlotte.

The afternoon half of the workshop was on leather tooling. In theory we were aiming this at making knife sheathes, but the shaping/sewing together portion never really happened in any organized fashion. I asked though, and Camma walked me through the basics with a demo. She gave us a hands-on rundown on tooling and stamping, and it’s really terribly nifty. merimask  has shown me some tooling in the past when we were hanging out at Pennsic, but she was working on masks. Because Camma was showing us samples on scrap she could go through all the steps. Camma brought all of her tools, and a bunch of people got to try it out. Myself not included, of course. This is the irony of these workshops. Because I am 1) the hostess and 2) primary child care for the day, it’s difficult for me to actually get my hands onto the hands-on stuff. If it’s something I’m really interested in I manage, but how successful I am varies. In this case, if I know that if I have something in particular I want to make, I can ask Camma for a private lesson. That’s the advantage of asking my friends to teach the workshops.

As an added bonus, I took delivery of four boxes of hand-me-downs for Charlotte, and jofglastingburi  took two piles of plant pots. There may be more that I want to get rid of, but I just grabbed the ones I could reach behind the stuff that was piled in front of the shelves. I can always get them to Jane.

I hope a good time was had by all. Over the course of the day we had twenty people there, although not all at one time. AND – the plumbing all behaved itself. This is a definite win. Now we need to come up with a topic and a date for September. I’m toying with the idea of making one of these a year more of an “adult swim” session – an unstructured bring-a-project sort of thing. I don’t know if people would still come for something like that or not. That’s more of what we think of as a “stitch and bitch,” and historically in this barony those don’t generally seem to draw very well – or at least not very widely. I’m also trying to figure out how to do a workshop on cooler covers. That’s not something that can be done in one day with multiple people, especially not if we’re going to cover making the materials list and parts layout and such. I’m just not sure that I want to give up multiple weekends in a row. I’ll have to keep thinking on it.

It was very difficult to get moving on Sunday. I finally was forced out of bed by internal hydraulic pressure, at which point Charlotte demanded release from her prison. Bob came and got her, and I tried to go back to bed, but couldn’t get back to sleep despite being exhausted. That was pretty much the pattern for the rest of the morning – too tired to function, try to nap, fail to nap, try to function, fail to function, try to nap… Really annoying. Eventually Charlotte went down for her nap, and Bob provided the motive force by heading out to work on the garage. My stated goal for Sunday had been to get all of the scrap lumber sorted into two categories: keep and trash. That’s all I was looking for. We moved the cars out of the way and dove in. Bob sorted and I sat with a hammer and pry bar and pulled all of the old nails out. A lot of what I was dealing with was still the pieces of the old wet bar that we pulled out of the kitchen four years ago. It was all piled across the front of the parts car and the house’s electrical panel. That’s the part that really made me nuts – I shouldn’t really need to check the status of my tetanus shot before I try to throw a circuit breaker. I also got some more of the general debris cleared off of the Triumphs. Tarps were folded and stored on a shelf; banner stands were stashed in Charlotte’s Pennsic wagon for now; a rug and a moving blanket were put on the clothes line to air (crap – they’re still there. Well, they’ll be well aired out.); a bag of coffee cans was sent to the basement for use storing hardware; etc. Once the wood had been moved out of the garage it made enough room for Bob to squeeze in and take down the last of the previous owners’ shelves. He also put up bicycle hooks and hung his old bike out of the way. I’m not going to be tripping over it for the first time in *years.* This makes me happy.

Just about the time I got the last of the nails pulled, Charlotte woke up. I decided not to warehouse her like we did last weekend. That didn’t make anyone happy. However, she does not like the miter saw. Not at all. Oh – the tears! I’m not sure what that’s about, because she has the same reaction to the vacuum cleaner, and used to have that reaction to the stand mixer. Something about electric motors? I have no idea. Eventually we took her inside and I left Bob to sort the lumber – somewhat against my better judgment. I have a feeling that we kept a lot more than we would have if I’d been out there. However – he also put it all away up in the rafters, so I’m not tripping over it. That works for me. Putting it away hadn’t been on my list – I just wanted it sorted.

The garage is actually coming together much more quickly than I had anticipated. Right now I can actually walk all the way around my car, and you can see that there are two small British sports cars on the other side. Once this week’s load of trash has gone out, both of those situations will be magnified.

I need a weekend to recover from my weekend.


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( 1 comment — Leave a comment )
galingale
Jul. 20th, 2010 12:18 am (UTC)
Congratulations--a very productive Sunday!
( 1 comment — Leave a comment )