Saturday, March 28, 2015

The End of March Update

Just a little post of what we have been doing these past few months.
The Kitchen Jotul provided lots of comfort this year... always feels so good to feel that heat and see that cheery flame. 

Ok now, this was a fun find! ...  the Schwinn Air-Dyne exercise bike.. non electric... Manual.. totally works by just pedaling... you never have to plug it in! ...even gives you a cooling breeze as you pedal... 

It was given to us when we went to a yard sale.. the fellow just wanted it "gone" as he had sold his house and had to move that very weekend...  so we loaded it on the trailer and took it home..  Perfect condition and was it Heavy!!!   So solid... found out after some research that it is quite a Collectors item and I can see why... they don't make things like this anymore ... you know, things that don't wear out!  From the 1970's...  It is practically indestructible and you can do lots of different exercises with it other than just basic pedaling.. Love this !

This beauty was also being given away.  It is one of the coolest looking sewing machines in my collection.  It needed cleaned and oiled as most all old machines do, but I like to see if I can get them back in working order. It even came in its own table. It has a very masculine appearance don't you think?... brown and cream with lots of dials... also very heavy.
This machine was very dirty and dusty mostly just from sitting someplace where dust and grime accumulated...  most parts of it were seized and needed quite some time for the oil to soak in. 

The original  Kenmore ad was still with it, torn from the pages of a mid 1960's Simpson's Sears catalog.  I believe it is one of the early fancy stitch machines... Made in Japan.  The sewing machine industry was something that grew huge in Japan after the second world war as they were trying to get their economy built back up... shifting from war machines to domestic machines... and Japan made excellent quality machines.. 

Here "He" is with his top metal lid removed... a bit of a look at the many working gears and moving parts.  I oiled everything that moved and even the parts that never. It eventually loosened up and everything started working in unison.... but it took a few days.  He had not been used for a long time but was almost like new.  I don't think it ever saw much use.

 Thought I'd test it out.  I had an old pair of oven mitts that were worn out, dreary and darn ugly... made from an old pair of recycled jeans years ago... they had done their service and were ready to retire.

  I took a pattern off them and sewed a new pair up using that groovy sewing machine above... worked great. I reused the inner padded insulating lining.  

The fabric was left over from the drapes in the living room.  I preshrunk it and it was fine for the job... besides it's pretty and heavy and so much nicer to look at.

We are still in the studio making jewelry too. Here are some new "Fiddleheads"... can't wait for the real fresh ones to pop their heads up...  and a pair of "Ship and Whale" that are always popular with visitors to the Maritimes.  
The sand dollars in the background were found on the St. Martins beach at one of the times of year when the tide is very, very low and goes out the farthest.  They were on the sand at exactly the point where the tide turned... you had to be quick to gather them.

 An in-progress shot of the  Fiddleheads after fusing, being set up to have the hole drilled for the earwire... at this in-between unfinished stage they have not yet been hammered, buffed or polished. 

Also doing some forging and shaping on the big steel textured block, my dad found for us years ago.  

And every once in a while I unload some art supplies and spend some time making art.  I particularly like the new Sakura "Koi" water brush.  That's it lying across the small white sectioned dish... the main body of the brush is a water reservoir... no problems with leaking and the bristles hold their shape well...  A pleasure to paint with.

Till next time. All the Best!


Penny said...

I love this post, a glimpse of so many things. Love the sand dollars, I have never seen any here.

Faye Henry said...

You have been busy, dear Gwen.. You sure have good fortune at the yard sales but there are not many people who would be willing to put so much effort into bringing them back to life.. smile.. You are such an industrious girl.. Love the sand dollars and have not seen those in St. Martins before.. Great find.. Spring seems to be here in a the temps at least.. Take care, my friend. xo

Guillaume said...

I envy you so much for your fireplace! Every time I see your sewing machine I remember the one my grandmother had.

Gwen Buchanan said...

Hi Penny, Faye and Guillaume, this time of year we never go too far away. Always trying to take care of things and prepare so the rest of the year goes smoothly.

Valerianna said...

Thanks for the update!! Waiting for spring, here, by the fire as it was cold and snowy yesterday, cold and sunny today. Did that Jotul used to be black? I seemed to remember if that way... but, maybe just because mine is the gunmetal enameled one. Happy almost April, hope it starts to feel that way soon.

rachel said...

You've just prompted me to measure our two bathroom doors, both modern panelled affairs that do not match anything at all in this old cottage! Then off to the reclamation places to seek more appropriate replacements.

Gwen Buchanan said...

Hi Valerianna, Sunny here too today... just got back from a long walk on the beach. Needed that! That is the cream coloured Jotul that is in the kitchen... the matte black one is in the living room.

Good Luck Rachel, in your search... nothing like real wood! Beautiful and functional.

cathyswatercolors said...

Magic! Thank you

Janice / Dancing with Sunflowers said...

You have been busy! I love your creative energy, and it's great to see all your finds being lovingly restored, even if it takes a few years for you to find exactly the right use for some.

I've never seen a sand dollar before. They're gorgeous.

Happy Spring to you!

Gwen Buchanan said...

Thanks Cathy and Janice, We are biting at the bit to make progress at the old homestead, making lots of plans and which steps to do first. cheers!

Jeri Landers said...

That is a good looking stove! I have one very similar but it is red. And now, on to the FINDS, wow, did you luck out! A heavy duty exercise bike to hop on after a few hours of sewing on that amazing machine...and it truly is GROOVY. I love the mitts made of old drapes...shades of Scarlett Ohara, it makes me smile. Can't wait to see what you accomplish this year on the old homestead!

Lisa said...

If you feel so inclined, I'd love to hear your process for fixing up the old doors. Part of my work out in Vancouver involves trying to encourage people to salvage material from old houses before they demo them but there's not much of a re-use market out here (most houses are built on spec and everyone wants to use new, generic building supplies). It would break your heart to see what gets sent to landfill/chipper out here. The pace of redevelopment is so fast.

Love your sewing machine find - looks like that will last forever. Sharp contrast to my modern low-end machine that I'm pretty sure is 90% plastic!

Shelley said...

My Seaside Friend, so nice to 'catch up' even if it is remotely. Loving the update and of course - those doors! You know me and doors. Great fun these projects, both big and small. Great finds as well! Wow a fan for those coming soon hot days.

Elizabeth Musgrave said...

Love the sewing machine! Funnily enough I have been wondering about replacing my Bernina (bought second hand and now quite elderly) but you make me wonder why. It works. Maybe I am just getting caught up in the idea of the new.