Monday, July 19, 2010

Expecting a Visitor!

Today I am preparing for my first visit from a model horse friend in Holland!  Anne is coming from Den Dolder, which is close-ish to where Ben's parents live.  She is coming tomorrow and will leave on Wednesday.  We are going to be doing a lot of tack making, and I can't wait!  I am about 75% finished with a commission set, so I hope to finish that tomorrow and get a good dent in tooling the next set on Wednesday.

Here's the little station I made for Anne, with all the essential tools for tooling and tack making!  Of course there are supplies she will need, so I can supply her from 'my' desk next door.  

Contents of the little work surface: catalogs for inspiration, sealer, paint, glue, water and a brush for tooling, a few stamps, tiny knives, burnishing tools, various styluses a ruler, leather pieces, rawhide hammer for stamping, and a little tray with toothpics for paint and glue.  

I've also tidied up the studio in general, there were some adult (or at least late teen) sized dust bunnies!

I'm really looking forward to having somebody to work with, it's been a long time.

Friday, July 16, 2010

I have gone nuts.

So I was working away on a commission today, when I hit a piece of leather that was super thin, and would be too floppy for a trad scale set.  I thought to myself that it would be great for a mini set, if I made those. You can see where this is going - I said to myself well, why don't I make mini sets?  No matter that the last ones I made were abominations to tack making, and I did them more than 10 years ago.  It's always a good time to try something new, right?  So my order was sidelined, and I set to work trying to tool a mini pleasure set.  Here are photos of it right now, with the Spinny by Mel Miller that will be wearing it!

Here's a detail shot of the pieces.  They are larger than life here!  I have just edge coated them, and will go back up and burnish the edges after dinner.

Sorry for the terrible photos!

I am planning on trying to finish this tonight after dinner.  I think I should be able to, assuming I can figure out the tree situation in a reasonable amount of time.  I really have no clue how I'm going to go about doing the swells and the horn, especially.

Wish me luck!

Thursday, July 15, 2010

German show & tack updates!

Once again I managed to ignore this poor blog for a month. How does the time go so quickly?  Since I last posted I went to a show in Germany again, this time in Frondenberg.  There should be an umlaut over that first O, but my keyboard can't do it. :-(  Here's photos from the show, my horses did very well!

I did not show any western saddles this time around, and I think that might become a trend for me.  It seems sort of weird to compete against customers, now that I've sold work in Germany.  I will show in the western classes at the big show in August, because I have already entered them, but that might be it for me!

I've also been busy in the studio.  Here's what I did yesterday and today:

One of the things that helps me really blast through stets is to have the "icky" parts done ahead of time, and in quantity.  That photo shows a ton of buckles with pesky tongues added, as well as three saddles worth of stirrup/fender adjustments.  I always hate slowing down to do the construction on those, and will really be thanking myself when I don't have to on these next saddles!

This headstall is for an order I did back in May.  I really enjoy doing braided headstalls, especially when I can add a little color.  The model is Hazel, painted by Carol Huddleston. 

Lastly, I am planning on going to Breyerfest next year!  My friend in Germany, Melanie K. and I are starting to save now.  I am going to be making one "extra" sales saddle set each month to raise money for it.  Those sales pieces will be posted directly to MH$P and here, so keep an eye out if you're interested!  They will be a mix of pleasure and working sets.

Thanks to everybody for reading!