Friday, December 17, 2010

A Milestone

Today I finished my purfling. This is the time in many makers' opinions that signifies something. From here on things go a little quicker, I am told. Brian asked me if I was going to celebrate. Yes! Jam tonight at the arts center. That's really all I have to say. See you soon.

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Good times

Okay all you excited onlookers! I am now working on purfling my beautiful and unique violin. All I have to say is SHIM! This is when, because of cutting the channel for the purfling too wide, you have to fill it with wood shavings, otherwise there will be gaps between the instrument and purfling. I have also been creating the wonderful bee stings. And it is said Strad took the easy way out and created his bee stings with black soot, not messing with actually cutting the purfling that way.

Friday is our final, which will consist of a written test over the Stradivari book we have been reading written by the Hill brothers. Next semester we will read about Guarneri.

Man I am excited to come home for Christmas. I feel like I need to make a list of all the people I need to see and things to do...Shelby is flying here this weekend and we will fly back to KC Wednesday. Shopping this weekend! Gifts, gifts, gifts, luckily if it all works out, I will be making most of mine. Something that made me happy today was getting up extra early and working on my Christmas cards. It has been lots of fun making them. Let's see what else has been going on.....not much. Happy Holidays Everyone. And now I'm off to work on gifts at the art center!

Friday, December 3, 2010

You know Brian was telling one of the students about when he was little. These are the stories I wish I had when I was little; maybe I just don't realize them yet....Anyways, he was saying he could remember when he was five years old he built a wooden ash tray. He said it felt like he spent hours on it. He would go in the basement to work on it and it took a couple days. He ended up giving it to his dad as a gift. He said from then on he knew he was going to be a wood worker....can kids really come to that realization??? That's amazing to me. I would like to find my niche.

Today I continued practicing purfling. Still working on those curves. I didn't want to show Brian my first try, but he told me, believe it or not, he has seen much worse. Haha that was a little uplifting I guess.

House sitting is soon coming to an end. It was nice.....oh I think I should get snow tires.


Thursday, December 2, 2010


I am jamming out to Crooked Still at the moment....well not really jamming, more like intently listening. I spent about an hour listening to a couple of their songs today and singing along; it was great....Ok well house sitting is going well. The other night I watched Julie and Julia, about the two cooks. And one of the girls blogged about her cooking. Her blog took off so much that she was getting calls to be on T.V., to write a book, to make a movie. It was based on a true story too. I just thought it was cool how her blog became really really poplar and started her off on a career. You never know, you know?

Today I began practicing purfling. We use three different tools for this. A purfling marker, pick, and a knife grounded specifically for this process. There are always stories Brian tells us about when he was in school at Chicago, like when it was time for him to start his purfling he just did it with a regular knife. No one told him you made a new knife for purfling, which doesn't seem like a big deal, but let's see you try it. Ya but he said all the students came over to him and were asking what he was doing. He wasn't told a lot of things when he was going to school that he fills us in about. It sounds like we have it easy compared to "back in the day".

Ok so Monday I brought my violin in to school to glue the upper seem together and Brian told me all the things that could/should be done to my violin. And guess what Allen you were right. I need a new bridge. It wasn't that I didn't believe you....I guess I am a little finicky about working on it. I guess I will have to wait a while longer to do it myself. I also continued finishing my outline on the violin I am building.
Tuesday I worked on making a handle for my purfling knife and grinded some on my purfling marker.
Wednesday, I finished grinding and honing the blades for the marker and learned how to install them properly. I also finished my handle, which I was informed took too long. I take too long often. Haha....
Today, I started practicing purfling on scrap wood. Doing straight lines wasn't too bad. The curves are another story. You want the channel about 1.7mm deep. The second try I got my channel as deep as 4mm or close to that. I was told I had made the grand canyon literally :P  whupps.....