Thursday, June 27, 2024

Storage Emptied

We made it! We actually finished clearing out storage last Sunday, but I've been too distracted to post photos.

As an aside, I thought it was interesting all three walls of this locker were patched. I wonder if someone who rented this space before us broke into all three of the adjoining lockers. It never occurred to me to be worried about folks breaking in this way. Consider yourself warned.

We still haven't figured out where to store the extra black wire racks that no longer fit. But we did finally decide to let the white cubes go. I'm trying to overcome my tendency to hang onto things just in case we might need them later.
We've started setting up the workout area.
We are currently searching for a used recumbent bike for me. I don't really want to buy new, but if I haven't found something by Black Friday, then I'll probably break down and buy new.

Jeff already chose the set up he wants (the Inspire FTX) but we'll probably wait until Black Friday to buy it as well. That will give us a good deadline to get everything cleared out and have the spot ready for it.

Wednesday, June 19, 2024

Storage Almost Empty

We've been steadily chipping away at our storage unit, visiting every weekend to bring home a load. It looks like just one more trip and we’ll be completely moved out—right on track for our end-of-June goal!
Letting go of things we probably won't need again is still a challenge for me. It's tough parting with items that 'might' come in handy someday, but I'm working on it.

Back at home, we've set up all the racks, including one for our canning supplies. Back when we lived in a rural area, canning was a big part of our routine thanks to the abundance of free or inexpensive produce. However, since moving to Portland, those opportunities have become scarce. It just doesn't make sense to spend a lot on fruit for a few jars of jam, so I’ve been downsizing our jar collection. Just this past week, I managed to clear out three large boxes!
Our next puzzle to solve is finding a new home for several boxes of fairly valuable books. Since the county library system stopped accepting donations at the beginning of the pandemic and hasn’t resumed, and I’m reluctant to simply drop them off at Goodwill, I’m considering selling them. It does mean more work, but I'm thinking of starting with a few of the most valuable ones to see how it goes. Who knows? It might turn out to be a worthwhile endeavor!

Friday, June 14, 2024

New Joinery Chairs

They've actually been finished for a couple of weeks but we were never able to make it into the workshop to pick them up during their business hours.

We bought four side chairs to match the two armchairs that came with the dining room table. We had them use the fabric that we used for our living room morris chairs. Now we just need to recover the seats on the original two armchairs to match. 

It will take a while for the cherry wood to darken so they'll look lighter than the rest of the furniture for a while.

This was definitely a splurge. The Joinery makes beautiful furniture but it is more expensive than we are typically willing to pay. I definitely prefer to buy used whenever I am lucky enough to find it but I looked for a set of four matching cherry chairs for more than a year before I finally broke down and ordered these.

Thursday, June 6, 2024

Still Playing With Stencils

While the starter edition of the Linearity Curve program is severely limited, it remains my best tool for removing backgrounds and cleaning up blemishes from bad scans. I'm finding it quite enjoyable to play around with the program while watching TV with my husband. When I'm ready to create the cut files, I plan to subscribe for a month so I can export SVG files again.

I'm hoping that once we've finished emptying out our storage, I'll be able to pull out my Cricut and start experimenting with cutting out one of the designs. By then, hopefully, I'll have decided which one to tackle first. LOL

Here are the latest options I'm considering.

I actually edited this one because I thought it would look better with more petals.
Excelsior Fresco Stencils catalog, 1924
Excelsior Fresco Stencils catalog
Blue Label catalog, 1900
Excelsior Fresco Stencils catalog
Devoe Art Stencils, c. 1910
I tried to make the ties look a little better, but they still need some work.

Blue Label catalog

Saturday, June 1, 2024

Living Room Stencil?

I've been playing with my stencil files again. I don't know for sure if I can cut them out with my Cricut, but if I can't, I suspect I have at least one friend with a laser cutter. (I'm hoping, anyway.)

I've spent like four days playing with images trying to come up with a stencil that I like but I don't really know what I want and I keep changing my mind. The downstairs rooms are more difficult to choose colors because we can't use light paint colors because they will get lost in the wall paint color.

I think I maybe have settled on this first one but this one will be a lot more difficult to fudge corners and add extra bits to fill space.

Sherwin Williams 41 from their 1910 catalog

I also prepped the files for this stencil, but I'm worried with all that orange it won't look good over the green wall paint. It does have the advantage of being stencil-able in one pass.

Blue Label 1559 from the 1900 catalog
This third option was the one I picked to do several years ago but now I've mostly abandoned it because I'm not convinced it will look good over the green paint.
Alabastine 305 from their 1920 catalog
I am experimenting with adding a large painted field below the flower but that may not work well because the stencil area is so large. 
One of the main reasons for this post is because I wanted to mention a new-to-me program I found that is super helpful for making stencils. I was trying to use my Cricut Design Space software and it was super frustrating because it just wouldn't do what I wanted it to. It's possible it would work better if I paid them the $15/month subscription, but I only use it a few times a year and have no use for any of their art files.

Anyway, when I clicked on one of my svg files it came up with Curve software. What? I don't even remember downloading that, but I must have. Anyway, its long name is Linearity Curve Graphic Design and the starter version (which is what I've been using) is available for free. I just uploaded my stencil clip art file, asked it to trace it, and it was super easy to remove the background and make changes. I have only used it for a few hours and I'm already a fan.

Update later: I spoke too soon on the free Curve program. I made the HUGE mistake of letting it update and now it's practically worthless unless you pay them. Sigh.