Thursday, July 1, 2010

Dancing with the Stars…er…I mean, Spoons

Believe it or not, I actually *did* come up with this idea on my own.  Although, I *do* have to admit I was *greatly* influenced by an image that I found during one of my many -- Yeah, you guessed it -- Google Image searches. 

The image I found looked like it was probably a single cartoon film cell (no, I don't know who did it.  In fact I don't seem to be able even *find* it again) showing two elaborately decorated spoons positioned on a dance floor in a rather typical “Dancing with the Stars” dip position.

I wanted to come up with something new and different to have as a table decoration at this year’s Christmas Craft show and I think I finally found it.  I have no real desire to sell it -- its real purpose is to generate customer interest -- so I’ll have it there with a ridiculously high price tag on it.  But, of course, in the event that somebody *really* likes it and isn’t driven off by the price, I may have a tough decision to make. :-)

This was one of those projects that I wasn’t positive that I was going to able to pull off until it was almost done.  After I drew up and carved the spoons, I drilled a small hole the tip of each of the bowls and glued in a dowel rod into each one for support.  But until I temporarily slipped these dowel rods into holes in a piece of scrap wood and held one spoon against the other, I still didn’t know exactly how, or even *if*, they would fit together. 

When I carved the “man spoon”, I left a little extra *meat* on his right hand.  Holding the two spoons together with one hand, I scribed the arc that was required to accept the “lady spoon’s” right shoulder with my other.  I carefully scooped out this area in “his” hand (*repeatedly* checking the fit, believe me!) to accept “her” shoulder. 

Once they seemed fit together the way I wanted, I shaped the rest of his hand and veeeeeeeery carefully drilled a hole through “his” hand (from the rear) into “her” shoulder, taking great care *not* to punch all the way through.  I then glued a small piece of dowel rod into “her” shoulder to hold them together during final assembly.

I cut a sort of semi-randomly shaped piece of cherry to use for the base (it seemed to me that symmetry would not work well here) and carefully transferred the mounting holes making sure that their spacing and angles exactly matched those in the scrap wood base. 

Much sanding and finishing later, I glued the spoons to each other and to the base. I added supports and rubber bands to hold everything steady, carefully mopped up all of the glue drips and went off to bed hoping that everything would actually hang together.  I spent much of time before sleep finally overtook me imagining how and where I would add all of the small gusset plates that I *just knew* I would need to hold things together when the glue wasn’t enough. 

Fortunately, while I slept, my faithful and resourceful magic wood glue fairies did a good job to make everything marvelously solid.  Even so, I still intend to handle it with kid gloves. :-)

The only thing left to add is a small, engraved brass plate on the sloped area on the left side.

‘Til next time, Keep makin’ chips.