Tuesday, 10 February 2015

About the coffee stirrers

I had a few questions/comments about using the coffee stirrers.

I have used them before on Connected-Disconnected. One of the pieces from a challenge I did with a small art group I was part of. (Well, we still work together, but we started the TVCT group and that used up all our time and energy!)
The coffee stirrer was at the top of a piece with translucent layers. I stitched large beads through the wood to hold the layers in place.

The Connected-Disconnected aspect of this piece was this: The layers were separated by beads, but also connected by the beads.
The particular coffee stirrer used in this piece was painted with wood stain first.

For the coffee stirrers in this bead project, I am using a thick pin (I find them too thick for using in sewing, so I use them like nails when I need one! Grin!) and tapping the pin through the wood. First I just make a small dent in the wood with my awl because the pin can scoot out of position and you find you have tapped your hole in the wrong place! I am using one of my older cutting mats to do this on. I stagger the holes a very little bit so they are not going into the same grain line of the wood.
Pin has been tapped in. Awl is making a dent.
The other marks are pencil to show where the other holes need to be.

Then I turn it over, and can just about see where the point came through. Then I repeat the process from this side for all the holes. Some stirrers are a bit more prone to splitting than others.
Pin is poised to poke into the little hole.

With the pin having a fine point, it doesn't force the wood apart too much. and it makes a hole big enough to stick my needle through.
Sometimes there is a little spitting at the end, but if I am careful I can still work with it.
The biggest thing to be careful about is the split having minute splintered edges that snag the beading thread.
You can see how it could split the wood if they were all lined up precisely.

Besides, unprecise actually makes work more interesting...the hand of the artist and all that! Big Grin!


365 Dresses said...

Thanks, Sandy! For some reason, the coffee stirrers are so much more appealing than popsicle sticks to me.

Maggi said...

Great recycling.