Saturday, June 27, 2009

Fresh out of the kiln.

The New Kiln Firing Up.

Since the kiln arrived I've been reading up on the instructions, and to be honest I found it all a bit scary! That and reading my enamel book, and researching the internet and magazines and I think I'm suffering from information overload.

So, this morning I decided that today was the day! With all my safety gear on the ready and my supplies and equipment nearby I wheeled the kiln to a spot by a window where I couldn't burn the house down.
Big Red Leather Welder's Gloves not shown!

Four or five hours later and I've made one small pair of earrings - yes that's all but I have learnt a lot. I've learnt:
  • If my glasses steam up it means my dust mask isn't tight enough!
  • Until I get some more practise -Stick to making pendants - it's hard to get two things exactly the same for earrings.
  • Don't counter enamel with the same colour as the front. A few layers down the track I couldn't remember which side was which or how many layer's I'd done.
  • Even though the books say don't apply a layer too thick - I think I can be a little more generous!
  • Practise on larger items - I thought if I messed up I'd waste less materials with little copper components but the truth is they are fiddly - I'd be better off with larger pieces until I'm a bit more experienced.
  • Find a better spot to use the kiln - preferably near the sink and near another power point where I can plug in the pickle pot - still hopefully where I won't burn the place down.
  • Try and get a production line thing happening - it was very stop start today. I seemed to be forever taking the leather gloves, goggles and mask on and off, depending on what bit I was doing.
Anyway, I had fun, I didn't get hat hair but did get goggle & mask hair instead - glad there were no unexpected visitors! And...........Ta Dah! Here's the results of the day's efforts :)

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Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Where Oh where is the fedex man?

,I recently purchased a kiln to use in my jewellery making and it's due to arrive today. It's being shipped direct from the manufacturer and I've been tracking it's progress on it's journey.

It's taken a rather long way around to get here, it's on Aussie soil now, in fact it's in the delivery truck now as I type, but first it went from Texas, to Tennessee and then to Anchorage Alaska. That bit surprised me - I wouldn't have thought Alaska was the most direct route from Texas to Perth but (?) ..... It then had a short stopover in Singapore before hitting our shores.

I had to rearrange the delivery, as it was initially due to arrive yesterday and I was at work all day. Then at midnight when I checked it's status before bed (as you do!) it said it was ready to be picked up at the depot. I was on the phone at 7am today as I was pretty sure I didn't organise to pick the thing up myself on the other side of the city. The call centre chap said to check the status again after 9am to see if it was still at the depot or on the truck as he couldn't tell either!

It's now 2 pm and it's been on the truck since 9 am. I'm anxious, although I know I shouldn't be, but the anticipation is killing me, will I hear the door knock? (very likely as the dogs will go ballistic so pretty much pointless worrying there!)

This morning the people across the road missed a delivery - I watched from the window as a delivery man took out his trolley, went to the front door, returned his trolley to the truck and left a card in their letterbox. I spent the next hour worrying it was really my kiln in that truck and they'd attempted delivery at the wrong house. Actually I haven't stopped worrying about that yet!

It's very wet and cold today but I've got the front door wide open, so that I'll hear the sound of the truck - I've got a security screen by the way! I have to move fast when I hear the truck to lock the dogs in the bedroom - that way I can open the screen door and allow my kiln - all 18.6 kgs - to be wheeled in on the delivery trolley without the dogs making their usual bid for freedom or jumping up on the poor fedex man.

Ha Ha, the stress of it all ;) - wonder what people did before online tracking?

Update: 3.24pm The Fedex Lady delivered my Kiln - All my worrying was for nothing :) Pin It

Monday, June 15, 2009

Made on The Left

Image by Helena Tay, courtesy of Made on the left.

Back in 2007 a group of Perth Crafters & Artists found each other in the Etsy Forums.
Excited to find like minded, local people on an international site, social meet ups were arranged in "real life".
It was from these meet ups and the online discussions in the forums that the seeds were planted and in 2008 "Made on the Left" was founded with a view to supporting Local Western Australian Independent Designers.
And support it has, in this past year or so, The hard working Made on The Left committee has organised two successful Art/Craft Markets; one here in Perth and the second in Bunbury.

They are now organising their third market at The Hyde Park Hotel, running over two days on the 25th & 26th July. Showcasing different work each day, this will give more artisans the opportunity to offer their work and promises to be bigger and better than ever.

Applications are being taken for stallholders now until 20th June, so get in quick - More details here and if you're one of the many Perth "Indie Handmade" lovers, then mark those dates in your diary.

Visit the Made On The Left Website
Visit the Made On The Left Blog
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