Jun 22, 2014

Packing dust

Good day everyone.  I have a lot of household chores to do today, but I finished the heart and wanted to show you.  I put it on a sampler to give you an idea of its size.  Sawdust was my filling choice and I just love it.  The quilt batting is great for some items like ornaments (and pears), but the crushed walnut shells and sawdust have such a great heft and feel for pincushions.  I know that many are appalled by its use because wood fibers are acidic but I'll be long gone and this will be dumped in a box for an estate sale when I'm gone.  Let them worry about it.  I always use a very lightweight fusible so the fine dust doesn't release, and I have no idea if that protects the fabric from the sawdust.  It wasn't until I purchased a pincushion from Susan Hoover of Olde Threads that I fell in love with dust.  And osnaburg for stitching.  The feel of her work was unlike anything I had done and I just kept playing with my new piece, kneading and patting it like a monkey with a doll.  So I tried it.  Na-uh.  So I tried again.  Much better!  Now I use it more often.
 I packed and packed and smacked and pressed until it was nice and dense.  To give you an idea, this tall container was filled with dust, and all of it is in the top curves of the heart.  I use the bottom of my tack hammer, a large dowel, paint brush handles, paint can openers as a rake, fingers, anything without sharp points to pack it in. 
As I reach the opening, I keep a threaded needle going, and add a line of glue to close as I go.  I'm not a  neat stitcher when closing and the glue just assures that the dust will stay put.  But I have to work fast because once the glue starts drying the needle is difficult to pull through.  When completed, you can squeeze to shape, smack to flatten, or pinch to fill a wrinkle.  It's like silly putty in dust form.
Squeak was here this morning, tried to eat, stayed most of the morning, and wouldn't let me close enough.  I can't waste the pill in his food if he's not eating.   He stares at the house, wanting me to help and it's killing me.  I tried 5 flavors of food, put his vitamins in cream, but he only consumes a little.   On the other hand, this fat cat is doing just fine.
And Momma is bringing the babes for breakfast and twice in the afternoon.
I need to get my year older butt in gear and clean this house.  I was so glad to see Kathy Barrick's post on her studio mess.  I think we all need to share photos like that so we know we aren't alone.  You go first.
Have a wonderful day as the month of June slips by.  Damn.
Thanks for visiting.


Robin in Virginia said...

Fabulous heart finish, Marly! Where do you get your sawdust? Or do you make your own?

Robin in Virginia

Faye said...

I love packing with sawdust~ I need to use it more often!!!! Love the babies.......

cucki said...

Sweet heart finish...
Pretty kitty and sweet fellows..
Big hugs x

Maggee said...

Love that heart!! It's really cute! Sawdust, eh...? Wonder if my husband can collect it when he works? Don't know if he has a bag on any equipment that he uses... Thanks for the pitch! Hugs!

Carol said...

Wow--that turned out great, Marly!! I love a more solid feel to pillows, ornaments, etc., too. I'll have to check out the sawdust idea. I'm with you on not caring so much about my things lasting forever... With my guys, they'll probably just pitch them anyway :)

Aww... aren't the baby deer so sweet? I just notice my first of the season romping out back by our pond yesterday. 'Tis the season, indeed!

Hope you can get that pill in Squeak soon--poor baby...

Merry Wind Farm said...

Hi, Marly, love your heart and Thankful Davis. I really need to try sawdust, seeing as a have about 50 huge bags out in the barn (used for horse bedding, but it's all pine and clean). Maybe try tuna fish for Squeak?

Anonymous said...

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Vickie said...

Aww no, poor Squeak. I am praying for that guy. ♥

Unknown said...

Thanks for your great finishing tips. I agree about the polyfil for ornaments. The sawdust makes ornaments too heavy for a real tree.
As for sharing our work areas with everyone, I would be mortified for anyone to see my mess. I'll just have to let your imagination run wild, but believe me it is not a pretty sight. Really pathetic!

Barb said...

That heart is so pretty!Thanks for your suggestions on the sawdust!

Margaret said...

Beautiful work on the heart! I haven't tried sawdust yet. I was going to ask the same question -- where do you get your sawdust? I don't have a woodworker. lol! Love the pics of the babies. Hope you can get Squeak to take the pill.....

Mary A said...

You are doing your best for Squeak, Marly. Trust that all will work out in the end. Love the info on stuffing the heart. I have that kit too.

Anonymous said...

Oh my, I love how your heart turned out! It's beautiful!
I hope Squeak's health improves soon. He's certainly in good hands. Take care.

Catherine said...

Catching up on all of your posts that I missed! Love your projects ~ congrats to the lucky winners of your beautiful pears ~ glad Bud is feeling better!!

Brenda said...

Oh I just LOVE your new heart you stitched!!!! Thank you for sharing the picture!!

And the other pictures as well esp the ones of the deer!!! LOVE love pictures of deer.

Jeanne said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Jeanne said...

Marly I made a needlepoint pincushion for my grandmother when I was in high school. I got it back after she passed away and still have it in my sewing room. It's stuffed with sawdust from my dad's table saw (he's also gone now). It's now 42 yrs old and still looks perfect! You're right to not worry about the sawdust filling!

Truus said...

Love your heart Marly!
Never used sawdust but for weight I use sharp sand or the sand for birdcages.
Have a nice day
greetings,Truus from the Netherlands

Melissa said...

Beautiful finish and thanks for the tutorial. I guess on your next post you'll answer all these questions about where you get your sawdust from!

I really like Thankful Davis, more and more every time I see it!

Deb Riddell said...

Wonderful heart finish Marly, so lovely! Hope Squeak will come to eat so you can maybe get a pill into him poor guy :O( And what's this about your year older butt?? Did you have a birthday that I missed? If so, happy belated birthday! Deb

Melody said...

Love your heart! I haven't tried filling anything with sawdust. I bet it does feel heavy. I hope Squeak feels better soon. It looks like Bud is doing great.

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