Some wood is too nice to toss and this cedar was no exception. Also the maple ring which was just cluttering up my bench — time to let it go as well. The cherry bits came out of the scrap box so it was totally a scrap wood project. On the cedar I tried a new experiment — I put orange alcohol dye in the shellac to brighten up the colors in lieu of dyeing the bare wood as I normally do. I was very pleased with the result – just a hint of color. I’m sure all wood turners have boxes of cut-offs and scraps that can be used for these types of projects.
I’ve been a bit slack on posting recently but not due to a lack of new projects — those I have in abundance. This one was driven by using up scrap wood, primarily that nice piece of spalted Pecan that was too nice to chunk but too small to make anything else. Everyone who sees it asks if it is an old map. The walnut is a perfect contrast. I ended up with a small hole for the lid to save all the spectacular grain and figure in the walnut at the top.
I have also been doing a lot of improvements in the shop recently including installing a new AC since it has been seriously hot and I still need to be out there. What a difference it makes!
I had done a piece I called Ebony no Ivory a while back. This one I wanted an ivory lid on. I had tried various inks and dyes but could not achieve the white on wood so I had to resort to paint. After rooting around in the garden shed I was able to locate a can of spray paint that was called Ivory and this is the result. The bowl itself came off the wall of shame and got updated with the black with floral pattern. It started out as cherry and still is on the inside. The black spindle just sets the piece off perfectly.
I have many projects in the almost finished stage and where I go with them depends on my mood. This piece has been sitting for about 3 weeks and I needed to get it on the done list which primarily consisted of making the lid and spindle and cutting the tenon off the bottom of the pot. I wanted a lid that complemented the vase so I used the same color scheme and added a black field beneath the spindle to match the neck. The spindle was a piece of cherry from the scrap box that was perfect for this piece.
Finished project — well almost. I wanted to spray and nice lacquer finish on it but it kept threatening to rain all day so I abandoned that plan. On this piece I had to work within the confines of the chunk of wood I was turning and came up with this shape. The sap wood was real soft so I epoxied a piece of ash to the bottom in order to chuck it up and dyed it black just for an accent. I was going to do a black lid to compliment that but the sycamore looked so good natural that I decided to leave it. Of course I had to bring the walnut up to the spindle just for balance.
I tried an oak bowl done black with gold leaf paint on it and wiped the paint off leaving the gold down in the grain. It looked spectacular but was just an old junk bowl so I had envisioned doing this piece using that technique — until I saw how it looked natural and decided to leave it that way. The grain was way too pretty to cover up and the knot going through was a definite plus for the interest value of the piece. I believe this is a piece of pecan wood which we had trimmed off a tree a few years ago and not the oak I had suspected before I took a tool to it. No, I haven’t given up on color, in fact I did another one this weekend with nice shades of green and blue which was rather soothing to look at. I still need to complete the lid and lacquer work on it before posting.
This lidded container is turned from sycamore and left natural. The only concession was to blacken the rim which looks very dramatic against the start lightness of the vessel. The lid is turned from teak, which I don’t like to turn but I had some to get rid of and this was a good place to use it. The spindle was a piece of walnut but I also blackened the base of the spindle to complement the black rim of the vessel. There is a light coat of shellac as a sanding sealer and then the piece was waxed to a satin sheen.
I found a whole branch of spalted wood out next to my shed that had been hanging around (not literally) for quite a while. I suspect it may have been from the pecan tree we had trimmed a few year ago but I’m not quite sure. I wanted to play the blues and had some new dyes that needed to be experimented with so this is what I came up with. The neck is actually a piece of sycamore and it got a hair line crack after gluing it in so that needs to be dealt with somehow. The lid is just a piece of poplar with more dye. It may may the crowning achievement of this pot. The main body is very grainy so it need many more wet sandings and coats of lacquer before I consider it a finished piece but it will be done this week in any case. I also have a couple more in progress that I’m working on that are totally different.
Today I am off to visit with the apothecary and I was able to get this piece done. It is a small piece of that spalted oak and I didn’t want to waste it so I glued it to a chunk o’ cherry and went at it. There is a band of Seattle’s Best #5 (dark roast coffee) separating the cherry from the oak and it looked suspiciously like walnut so I put a walnut spindle on to match. I do wish I had also but one of those bands at the top where the cherry lid meets but I just ran out of time — funny how that happens even when you have nothing but time but I had another bowl I wanted to finish coloring to take with me and I had to make a choice.
As promised, the willow pot that got colored. Actually it got recolored, the first dye job was too much of a bright red and looked a bit garish or maybe juvenile. Unfortunately I didn’t think of that until I already had a couple of coats of lacquer on it. I sanded back the lacquer a bit and then wiped down with lacquer thinner and rubbed alcohol based blue indigo dye on hoping to get a shade of purple. What I actually got was another smoky ember effect which honestly looks better than purple would have. Not sure about the lid yet — I’ll have to look at it a few more days yet. Maybe a natural wood wood be better.
I have so many projects going on at once that sometimes I lose track of what I had in mind for a certain piece. I feel driven like I’m just on a long weekend and need to get as much as I can in before going back to work. Eventually I’ll accept that every day is a weekend and I can relax a bit more.