Friday, August 26, 2011

Cutting Template for Tarps

Sometimes when I am cutting something out I want to get the prettiest/snazziest piece of vinyl tarp for the job.

The cutter I use for cutting vinyl has a support sheet that is either 12X12" or 12X24". I built a template for laying on top of the vinyl to get the exact dimensions for the cutting sheet. The cutaway portals are so I can see the look of the underlying vinyl that I am cutting. It is from a recycled coroplast campaign sign. Coroplast is like corrugated cardboard but it is made out of plastic, #5 if I recall correctly.

I added a couple of sandbag-style weights to keep the template in place while I am cutting. Genius!

Thursday, August 18, 2011

Designing a wallet

I put my nerd glasses on and I'm figuring out the cut files for some simple foldover wallets. Tomorrow I'll make the cut file and try out some samples. The wallet will have a clear vinyl window and four card slots.

I had already advertised these wallet features on my website but there hadn't been any request for quotes so I hadn't figured out the exact measurements for the card slots. On this design I want to have finished foldover edges. My previous designs I had raw edges or twill binding for the edge.

Update: this is taking longer than I thought as a bout of sickness has beset me. So when my energy shows up again I'm going to make sure I build efficiency into the design.

Sunday, August 14, 2011

Vexing the dog with PVC conduit

Sometimes I get lengths of PVC or aluminum conduit or dowels with my banners. One fun thing to do with them is annoy the dog. She can't figure out what to make of the noise coming out of the end of it. This strategy is handy when our puppy has the urge to bite everything in sight. At Home Depot they have rubber feet that fit on the end so if I make a stool or something I can likely find some feet to finish it at Home Depot.

Friday, August 12, 2011

Scraplab Design contest

I entered a soap tote into Scraplab's design contest because what the heck, might get some exposure that way.

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Local Recognition!

I've been toiling away in relative obscurity for quite some time now. In the last few days, however there have been some encouragements. For one, the mayor's office has offered me their old banners to recycle. The other cool thing was that a prominent local artist sent me a friend request.

This is just the boost I need to get into my workshop and execute some experiments.

I guess that is what intermittent positive feedback does, it keeps us trying for more of the same.

Sunday, August 7, 2011

Folding Footstool

I continue to get wooden dowels of various sizes when I go pick up used vinyl banners. I think I'll start making something like this to use up the dowels, or else my family is going to want to report me to that hoarders show!

The only thing I do collect these days is banners and dowels. I got rid of all my fabric, knitting machine and wool. I used to do reconstructed clothing, but only one shirt ever sold on Etsy, so I let the listings expire and wore the shirts myself!

Friday, August 5, 2011

Expandable Tote

Offset cuts are the secret to making this type of mesh. Here I used two inch vertical cuts, spaced 1/2 an inch apart. Each cut is offset in elevation from its neighbor by one inch. If I had carried the cuts all the way to the top, the top part of the bag would be able to expand also.

This kind of bag would be good as a beach bag or farmer's market tote.

Thursday, August 4, 2011

Those tripod chair bloopers

I was making a second tripod camp stool, got the legs stained and coated with polyurethane, all was well. Then, upon doing a test sit, "CRACK" goes the dowel. These dowels were the same diameter as my previous successful tripod camp stool, so I shall glue the crack and try again. UPDATE: A bit of wood glue and it was all repaired. Now I have two practice chairs.

I used two layers of a fine-mesh vinyl tarp, and made "collar tips" like on western shirts to add reinforcement to the corners. I used Inkscape to design them. I am used to using an old version of Adobe Illustrator.

It had been a while since I used my workshop PC and vinyl cutter. I found that my son had absconded with the keyboard and mouse for some experiments of his own.

I went to a second big box hardware store and still could not find the exact lengths for the bolts. Those I had to Dremel down to size before adding the acorn nut. At least I got the hardware all the same color this time.

SECOND UPDATE: We went to the local corn maze and I stayed with the dog while the rest enjoyed the maze. I had been using this tripod chair a few times previous. This time two of the wooden dowels disintegrated! I was glad no one saw my pratfall. One was a clean break, the other along the grain. I guess my dowels weren't thick enough. Note to self: use thicker dowels next time. The tarp and the hardware were all fine, it was the dowels that were the weak link.