Thursday, 30 January 2014

And the Week Started Off So Well.....Honeydukes Bay Window Crisis!!

I have spent this week working on the windows of Honeydukes. I have researched lots of different sites and taken on board lots of helpful advice and began the week feeling positive that the look I want is achievable.
I began with the cardboard tubes picked for their size if not for their content!
 I decided to build the layers of the side window first as I don't have to worry about the front opening panel. This window soon proved problematic as the circular tube cannot be placed half way because of the pavement width. This means I have to have a larger ledge inside the shop which won't match the front two bays. Hmmmm, I am not good with things that do not match. 
The actual window is made from a plastic sink mat that I have cut to size. I got this idea from Pinterest where someone had used plastic storage baskets for window panes. I then saw these large sink mats that I hope will provide the bend required for the bow. 
 I have then built the top but as you can see the pavement edging looks to small and nondescript once the top is added.
 I decided that all my circles would be made with balsa wood as I thought this material would be easier for me to cut. I found this cutting tool in Hobbycraft which is mainly for card and paper but I thought it would at least mark the wood for me. Which it did but as balsa is so soft and is not great when cutting against the grain I found out very quickly that circles and thin balsa do not go together!
 The cut circles look better than I thought after a lot of careful sanding but the pavement plinth still looks a bit weak. The wood is the real problem because I have had to use quite a thin balsa sheet so that I can cut it into circles.
The drums are to be covered in a very thin veneer I have had hanging around for a while. I was hoping this veneer  would add texture to the plain cardboard. Thanks Jo for this tip!! I cut strips to size, then steamed them in my vegetable steamer, while they were still damp I have lined these tubes with the strips to get the veneer to bend.
 I then glued the veneer strip around the tube. I was amazed when the is worked first time but.....I then realised I need the joins to be half way round the tube so they can be hidden by the window's edges. Oh, well practice makes perfect!!
 So, I cut out lots of circles, lots of semi-circles, lots of strips of veneer and painted and stained. Then today I have sat down and put all the windows together and discovered all sorts of problems. The main one being I am not convinced the window will glue in properly and be resilient enough. I know the stonework will act as a stabiliser and I can use architrave inside the shop which will help.
This window is one of the front windows and here I have used a 6mm craft circle that I bought on Ebay, for the pavement plinth and the top piece which seem to add a bit more substance.
This will help with the painting as the outside will need to be weathered and I am not sure the balsa will stand up to this.
So I sat and looked at everything this evening and thought, 'this is not working' and have walked away for the moment. I have found some craft circles on Ebay that are 3mm in depth that may prove more robust than the ones I have cut. They won't arrive for a few days so I think I will go back to the drawing board and think through some of the problems.
It's so annoying but I am trying not to look at it as a complete waste of time. What it has shown me is I need to learn how to use a jigsaw or whatever tool it is you need to cut circles!!

15 comments:

  1. No experiment is a ever a mistake or a failure… you simply learn what don't work! If I need nice circles, I order them from a laser cutter. They are always perfect! Just keep at it. :-)

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  2. Hi Tabitha, I know I should view it as a learning curve but experiments always cost too many pennies don't they!? I had ordered some laser circles but they were just a little too thick and clumsy hence the balsa. I should have just looked for some thinner ones and gone with them rather than think.....yep, I an do that.....It would have been cheaper in the long run and far less annoying.

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  3. Janice, they look great. I know how much patience it takes to build these windows..

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    1. As you know Debbie I have been totally inspired by your project. Many thanks for your support.

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  4. Hello Janice,
    I am sorry you hit a bump in t e road. I have never used balsa wood, but would it help to cover it in thick gesso before you age it? I use it a lot on cardboard "walls" and so far is has worked out well for me.
    Hang in there I am sure a brilliant solution is right on the tip of your tongue! All will be well!
    Big hug,
    Giac

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    1. I have decided to ditch the balsa altogether, it is just not giving me the finish I want. I have never used Gesso before so I will definitely look out for some as I have decided to line the bays with card. Thanks for the tip.

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  5. I think the Bay looks great anyway but I know how frustrating it is when you can't make things work as you had intended. I'm sure you will come up with a great solution.

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    1. Hi, I have gone back to the drawing board and sourced some craft circles from Ebay that I hope will give the windows a cleaner finish. Silly me should have done that in the first place.

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  6. You may find various sized wooden circles at a hobby store. These are not very expensive, and can be cut easily. I use them for table tops.
    I love what you are doing with your project and wish you luck.
    Hugs, Drora

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    1. You are so right Drora, I should have gone with my first instinct and bought them ready made. I have now found some that I think will do the job.

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  7. Sometimes it is better to step away for a while and come back with fresh eyes. Honestly they look fine to me but I know what you mean when something isn't right. I am sure you are on the right track but don't beat yourself up it didn't work perfectly first time. No tips on cutting balsa on a curve...for as thin and soft as it is I find it harder to work with sometimes x

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    1. Have dumped the balsa and the veneer Jayne. Ordered some ready cut circles and bought some very thin bass wood, played around with them today and am much happier. Now need the circles to arrive.

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  8. Project Wonderful! The circle cutter great invention! Thank you for your presentation!

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    1. Thank you for stopping by And a.

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  9. Great detailed information, I ll be visiting you more frequently, here is very interesting information.

    Long board & Balsa Long board

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