New Studio!

I've been working in an 8 foot by 7 foot area for seven years and finally made the jump to the cinder block bunker known as our garage. Two months of renovation, insulation, and roof repair has lead to a 260 SF studio and workshop.

We have an open house, today, and I am still getting tools put away, but looking forward to the folks stopping by to make it "real." 

Process pics of the transformation are mainly up on my Instagram account.

As soon as the sawdust settles, I'm tackling the backlog of product research and design to-do's that have built up, but wowza. This year is going to be amazing and I thank all the folks who have been lending their awesomeness to see this through.

studio.JPG
Posted on March 4, 2017 .

#FieldTripFriday It's Everywhere!

Sometimes, a #FieldTripFriday can be a quickie. No big whup. A fun boost to the day. But the places it can lead me are often fabulous little post-field trip adventures, winding down paths overgrown with weird facts and gnarled with interesting inspirations.

Today I picked up on an old favorite geek of mine, searching out the sidewalk contractor stamps and more rare plaques as I took a walk around my Denver neighborhood with the hound. The concrete stamp usually has the name of the contractor and often the date the concrete was poured. Heck, the sidewalk in front of my 1890 house got poured in 1970, making me wonder what history lies just beneath our feet (and often beneath our notice).

denver sidewalk.jpg

Masonry of Denver put together a few Denver stamps. 

Forgotton Chicago has a splendid article about the difference between plaques and stamps and great photos from my home town. 

Sidewalk of Corvalis, OR nails it with a Google map showing GPS coordinates and pictures of sidewalk stamps.

But stamping into concrete is not just the purview of contractors. Imprinting into a semi-squishy surface seems ubiquitous by chance or determination. Head out to Morrison, Colorado and the easily accessed Dinosaur Ridge. An easy hike up the road (or pay for a ride up at the base camp Dinosaur Ridge Museum) and view the wonders of IGUANADON FOOTPRINTS!!! GAH! GEEK SQUEAL!  

The Romans may have invented concrete, taking it to an apex of material engineering and design with the Parthenon, but I wonder if a hand print is embedded somewhere in there...

Around town I sighted plenty bird feet, their hopping committed to the concrete for as long as that matrix lasts. Perhaps just as wonderful are the family hand prints such as the ones in my back yard made by the previous owners dated 2001.  

You can find photos from today's #FieldTripFriday on my Facebook page , and some on Instagram. I use the hashtag #FieldTripFriday on my Twitter posts, as well.

I LOVE LOVE LOVE seeing what other folks find on thier fieldtrips, so please feel free to tag me or use #FieldTripFriday so I can geek out with your adventures!

Posted on May 29, 2015 and filed under Field Trip Friday.

Gingham Gold!

Could there be anything so useful as a good sized bandana? 

I'm a sucker for vintage cotton fabrics and this spring season I went digging for gingham gold! A limited amount of 22" to 24" square hand washed, dye fixed, hand sewn bandanas will be available to purchase as part of the Gifts for Gardeners set available at my booth (see my Events page for all the spring markets around town where you'll find me). 

I'll post more details in April. 

Posted on March 9, 2015 .

Beeswax Wood Finish Recipe

BEESWAX FINISHING WAX RECIPE

Uses: Wood, Leather

You will need:
1 part beeswax
3 parts colorless, odorless food grade oil (jojoba)

Grater- large holes
Wax paper
Baking Sheet
Small bowl
Liquid measuring cup
Scale
Sauce pan to simmer water
Medium bowl to place above sauce pan- ideally with a pour spout
Metal mixing spoon
Container for oil- recommend wide mouth, straight side glass jars, but can also use plastic container with tight fitting lid.

Soft cotton cloth to apply wax

OPTIONAL: ADDING COLOR TO WOOD
Food coloring can be used on wood to safely tint but the wood needs time to completely dry before applying the beeswax finish. 

- Add 5-6 drops of food color into 4 oz water and brush directly onto the wood and let dry overnight before applying beeswax finish. Add more food coloring to water for darker colors.

Steps:

1. GRATE BEESWAX. You will need one part wax to 3 parts oil
- Tear a sheet of wax paper to line the baking sheet. 
- Grate beeswax onto lined baking sheet. 
- Set up scale. Put small bowl on scale and zero scale.
- Gather up wax paper sheet with beeswax shavings and pour into small bowl on 

scale until you have 1 part beeswax registered on scale. (EX: 1 oz of beeswax for 

3 oz of oil). Reserve wax paper and baking sheet to use as base for filling 

containers at the end of this process.

2. MEASURE OIL. You will need three parts oil to one part wax.
- Measure oil into liquid measuring cup. 

3. BAIN-MARIE-In saucepan, add 2 cups of cold water, bring to a simmer.
- Add medium bowl to sauce pan, lower heat to medium low. Water should be just 

below but not touching the bottom of the bowl.

4. Add oil to medium bowl. Allow to warm for about 2 minutes.

5. Add shaved beeswax, stirring slowly and constantly until the wax has completely 

dissolved, 4-6 minutes

6. CONTAINER: set open containers on wax paper lined baking sheet. 
- Pour mixture into containers, leaving 1/2" below lid. 
- Allow mixture to cool in containers with the lid off. Mixture will be completely 

opaque and yellow.
- Mark container with "beeswax finish" and the date. 

7. STORAGE, SHELF LIFE:
Store in a cool place out of direct sunlight for longer life.
Shelf life- 1 year.

---
FINISHING TIPS:
Take a soft cotton cloth and rub into the beeswax finish. The wax becomes soft with just the heat of your hand. A little bit goes a long way so work in small  amounts.

If you are left with too much wax on an item, wrap it in a cotton cloth and use a hair drier to heat up the item. The excess wax will be absorbed by the cloth.

---
NOTES ON INGREDIENTS USED BY DONNA DIDDIT:
Why Jojoba?

No scent
No color
Does not go rancid
Food safe
Source: Desert Essence
Other options: any shelf stable food grade oil that is clear and relatively odorless.

Why Beeswax?
Honey scent
Warm yellow color
Long life
Food Safe
Source: Beeyond the Hive
 

Posted on August 29, 2014 .