Friday, September 4, 2015

Friday fragments

... in which our plucky heroine enjoys the retro healing powers of calamine lotion, and other end of the week delights:

Huzzah for Boneclaw Mother! I heard a racket in the backyard this morning, Nanny Ogg was standing on the ramp to the henhouse making a big fuss, and when I looked around, Boneclaw was nowhere to be seen... so I checked inside the coop: she was just getting up off the nest box, and there was a lovely pale brown egg, the very first egg from my new hens!


Tiny rivets, tiny rivets... there are well over a hundred tiny rivets on this project...
and they all need to have two or three aligned holes drilled, and enlarged (since wire gauges and drill bits don't come in identical sizes) and carefully kept aligned whist each rivet is being set so the other holes will stay where they belong. It is most fiddly, and requires a good deal of mental gymnastics to sort out which parts of the assembly to do first...
It has been a real challenge, since I have only ever made two other coronets from start to finish. Usually my contribution to the projects like this has been as a sort of subcontractor, to create the enameled pieces for the regalia, and my former studio partner Bill Dawson did all the fabrication. Reasonably, after many years of this, he wanted to hand off both the negotiation and the labor on this particular pair of coronets, which are for a group local to my area. I, however, have had a (hopefully) unwarranted, but unrelenting and paralyzing fear of having things go wrong, which has made an intricate and elaborate project even more slow and difficult. I don't know when I shall ever feel confident in my abilities with metalworking, but I do know that I shall be very glad when this project is completed and delivered!

I know this is really an advert, but the sentiment is a useful aide-memoire

Took a break for part of the day today (from the coronet project) to finish up an apron-dress style overdress* for little Blue Cedar House - after all, if an active girlchild is going to September Crown, she will need more than one set of outer layer clothes!

September SMART goals
1 apron dress for L - -
2 - - -
3 - - -
4 - - -
5 - - -
6 - - -
7 - - -
8 - - -
9 - - -
10 - - -

* This dress is a lot cuter when being worn than on the hanger on the front porch; this is the first overdress I made for her →

Oh, and about that calamine lotion... apparently some of the very very tiny chicken mites decided to go ahead and bite the chicken keeper (while I was washing them out of the chicken house...) nasty horribly itchy painful little bites, like a spider bite but smaller and a lot more of them. I look like I have the chicken pox all over my torso. Not since I lived at Rosehaven have I been so attacked by arachnids. Have been taking HOT showers to help denature the itch. Tried Benedryl topical, but no help at all. Remembered calamine from my childhood, and it is somewhat slightly better at calming the itch. Now that I've acquired some hydrated lime, will be making limewash to whitewash the inside of the coop to keep the mites at bay!


  1. That egg is a thing of beauty, and how wonderful that Nanny Ogg was impressed with it enough to announce its arrival. The coronet, too, is a thing of beauty. How fortunate your friends are to have a talent like yours in their midst.

    1. Thank you... Yesterday was the first day that there were two eggs in the nest box, which made me even happier. One of my four sources of income is making custom jewelery and regalia, and as my knee injury will preclude my returning to housecleaning for pay, I will be needing to increase my efforts for the other sorts of work. I learned a lot while working on this project about what order to do different parts of the job, and probably more than I wanted to learn about the quirks inside my own head!

  2. OMG Alison you are such an artist, and I agree with Carol. Love the girl's layers and your first egg. That is truly special how you found it.

    1. I find my hens a never-ending source of entertainment, as well as now, a source for homegrown eggs! The overdress/underdress combination, worn here by little L, is our best approximation of clothing worn in the Viking Age, based on the very few archaeological finds from that era. (I did add in some embellishment to make it "pretty" because what little girl doesn't want some bling, well as long as it doesn't get in the way of her active life!)