Sunday, February 28, 2016

Life on the block

This weekend was not about making - rather it was about doing things that contribute to our life on the block including our art life.

On Friday we spent all day travelling and loading and unloading beautiful letterpress trays, type and cabinet that Fiona had purchased -n a 'town' about 2 hours drive away.

©2016 Barry Smith - Gorgeous heavy cast-iron book press
Saturday morning was about picking up the book press above that had been gifted to us - we thanked the woman who gave it to us with a couple of small art pieces. The press has made its way over to my studio-garage - it will encourage me to get back to a bit of bookbinding and journal making.

I spent a bit of time sanding and oiling Fiona's 'new' type cabinet. As you can see the cabinet was very dirty; but is now clean without removing the marks etc that are the history of the piece - it is very old. Fiona has spent much of the weekend sorting type and putting the trays back into the cabinet - she has a veritable treasure trove of type now.

©2016 Barry Smith - Type cabinet - seen cleaner days.

©2016 Barry Smith - Type cabinet looking a little more loved
When we we were off picking up the letterpress stuff Fiona's dad was keen to visit a big orchid nursery in the area of the town we visited. Fiona and I ended up with 12 small orchids. I managed to attach these to offcuts of the Hairy Oak I cut about a week ago on the band saw. They turned out well as you can see below - all now attached to trees on the shady terraces below the house.

©2016 Barry Smith - Baby orchids ready to take their chance on the block.
And we were running out of 601mvr coffee so it was time to husk some beans. Ended up with about 1-1.5kg of green beans - ready for roasting. I'm sure the coffee will help with creative thinking and doing.

©2016 Barry Smith  - Dried 601mvr coffee beans ready for husking - last year's crop
©2016 Barry Smith - Once through the hand operated husker
©2016 Barry Smith - After a couple more rubbings and winnowings
©2016 Barry Smith - The Husks - lovely texture and colour
All in all a varied weekend.


  1. It's a productive life Barry...well done.

    1. Hi JM - It what keeps us going - thanks for checking out the bits and pieces. B

  2. A new letterpress, fabulous new cabinet for Fiona, orchids and fresh coffee beans?! Doesn't get much better than that. Enjoy!

  3. What a wonderful variety of delights, Barry! Fiona's type cabinet looks great and I'll be waiting to see what you make (in the bookish line) with the new press. I can smell the coffee from here...

  4. Hi AA & C - thanks for sharing our joy - as AA says it doesn't get much better; except as C says unless you cash smell and enjoy the coffee. Go well. B


Comments are welcomed - it is good to connect with fellow travellers.