first attempt - cross grain hand finished effect.

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Of framing styles or techniques that rocked your boat, and also of those that didn't
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Not your average framer
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first attempt - cross grain hand finished effect.

Post by Not your average framer » Sun 02 Aug, 2020 4:23 pm

This is not yet perfect. I know what I've got to sort out and I need to make a little jig, but that needs a bit of thinking it out as well. Having said all that - Here is the photo! BTW, this is a very cheap piece of pine moulding and it's not hard to do. Everything has been done completely free hand. I'm surprised it has worked as well as it has!
DSCF0112.JPG
Any comments welome!
Mark Lacey

“Life is short. Art long. Opportunity is fleeting. Experience treacherous. Judgement difficult.”
― Geoffrey Chaucer

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Re: first attempt - cross grain hand finished effect.

Post by prospero » Mon 03 Aug, 2020 2:49 am

Nice! :D :P 8) :clap: :ninja: :ninja: :ninja: :ninja:
Watch Out. There's A Humphrey About

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Re: first attempt - cross grain hand finished effect.

Post by Not your average framer » Mon 03 Aug, 2020 4:18 am

I need to make a jig to be able to do this better. The front face of the moulding was dragged across the teeth of my band saw blade in the wrong direction, but it needs more pressure, without deflecting the blade to get a more uniform effect. This means having a large piece of oak preventing the blade from flexing sideways and another piece of wood to set a uniform pressure as the moulding is dragged past. It's a bog standard cheap pine moulding, which costs something like about 30 pence a foot, which is a lot cheaper that an equivalent cross grain factory finished moulding at about £8 per foot + |Vat for the same sort of moulding width. I also can pick what even colour combination I choose, rather that settle for only the colour choices available a factory finished moulding.

This particular example is light brown over black, but I've got plenty of other colour combinations that I want to try as well. In this particular case, the light brown is lightly flicked across the tops of the resulting raised texture, but if I used a suitable chalky emulsion paint and removed the surplus with a damp cloth, I think it would have been a different effect. The wood needed to be treated to remove any raised grain and other flatness variations on this occasion, but I think this would not be such a problem with a slightly deeper and more uniform texturing effect. I have plans to try a longitudinal brushed and distressed pine driftwood effect too, which will be a very different type of effect and maybe a burnt pine effect as well.

As you may have already guessed, this is me sharpening my act up, to do lots of interesting things for displaying in my shop windows for when I re-open and for the coming recession, that we are being told to expect, apparently it going to be a very deep and potentially long lasting recession. Fortunately, I've got some amazing looking stacked moulding frames and really eye catching ideas for displaying in my shop windows, a lot of these will be using up some of the dead stock old moulding that I have got from years ago. Many of these old mouldings have not been manufactured since the 1960's and 1970's. There's quite a few which are being re-finished, with a more modern twist and as usual, I'm doing plenty of different things that will be unique to me.

Doing exactly the same items as everyone else, means that everyone else is your competitor and the only difference between you and everyone else might just be the price tag. This can easily be where the race to the bottom begins. I like the unique selling postion, otherwise known as USP. I like to be doing things that are different and largely unique. You generally don't see anything which I do anywhere else. Lots of customers like to have things in their homes, which you don't see elsewhere. These people are not followers of what everyone else does. They are not following whatever may be fashionable at the time. They are leaders, not followers! Where do they shop?

They find interesting places, where the people who run these places are also leaders, not followers and seek to be ahead of the game, not just copying what the market seems to be doing at any one time. How do you get stuck with old stock? Just stock what seems fashionable at the time and get caught with stock left over, when the next new fashionable thing comes along. The more that something is in fashion, the more it is out of fashion, when the next new fashion comes along! That's why big stores have sales. I don't play that game! Why should I? I've been a designer almost all of my working life,so I'll design and develop the things I want to sell and save money at the same time.

What's stopping other forum members from doing the same thing? Probably not that much! The bottom end of the market, is not generally where the money is, when hard times come along. However the top end of the market does a lot better! It's about special things for people, who don't mind paying a little bit more for something that's a bit more special, than the"run of the mill" stuff. How do you start getting into selling niche market items? Well, it starts with exercising a bit of imagination and spending time, looking around places that are upmarket and trendy. Get to recognise the look and the feel of what people with discernment and money like to buy and then start making things that are really special, nice and tasteful.
Mark Lacey

“Life is short. Art long. Opportunity is fleeting. Experience treacherous. Judgement difficult.”
― Geoffrey Chaucer

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Orde02
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Re: first attempt - cross grain hand finished effect.

Post by Orde02 » Mon 03 Aug, 2020 3:15 pm

Looks great to me!

Matt

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Re: first attempt - cross grain hand finished effect.

Post by Not your average framer » Mon 03 Aug, 2020 6:01 pm

Thanks Matt. I was quite pleased with how it turned out. The first time is a bit of an experiment to see if the idea is any good and to find out what you got right and what you got wrong. What you expect to happen in theory and what actually happens in practice are often not the same. Well, I still need to put somethings right, but at least I now known what needs putting right and hopefully how to do it. The moulding is a very cheap plain and un-finished flat pine moulding, which I have a number of different uses for! This is only one such use, out of many!

I still need to find out if the customers will like it. I assume that at least some will, but I have to wait and see. I am hoping to have lots of new and nice things for my shop windows, to be revealed on the day that I re-open my shop. I am assuming that there might not be a lot of money around, so things need to be a bit special and eye catching, as these might be really hard times. I'm not in the busiest of locations. The town no longer has any branches of banks anymore and there is not as much foot traffic as there once was.

Lots of our friends have shops in the town as well and things are not as easy as they once were. My wife and I are both pensioners, we don't particularly need the income from the shop, but I still need to keep active to fight off the effects of my stroke, so keeping the shop going seems to make sense for the moment. I am very happy to be working out some of these ideas and also to share them with others. Somehow, we all need to keep going and to earn a living. Perhaps a few good ideas from various forum menbers might turn out to be more timely and helpful, than any of us realise.
Mark Lacey

“Life is short. Art long. Opportunity is fleeting. Experience treacherous. Judgement difficult.”
― Geoffrey Chaucer

Not your average framer
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Re: first attempt - cross grain hand finished effect.

Post by Not your average framer » Thu 10 Sep, 2020 7:34 pm

I am now working out which contrasting colours will work best , with a few more display chevron samples. I kind of thinking that maybe I will made the base coat black in each case, with peaks of the graining highlighted in tan (as per the photo), muted red, muted mid green and perhaps a muted blue grey. I am wondering about some not to bright metallics as well, but I'm not really all that sure!

Any thoughts?
Thanks.
Mark Lacey

“Life is short. Art long. Opportunity is fleeting. Experience treacherous. Judgement difficult.”
― Geoffrey Chaucer

Justintime
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Re: first attempt - cross grain hand finished effect.

Post by Justintime » Fri 11 Sep, 2020 7:28 am

"What's stopping other forum members from doing the same?"...is an interesting question.
As a one man band in year 4 putting in 40+ hours a week in the home studio, any spare time I have goes into working on marketing. Social media, google ranking/listing, networking and some occasional print advertising have all proved to be the best sources of new business for me.
Selling mostly prefinished mouldings does feel a bit of an easy way out so i concentrate on trying to do interesting mount work and give a great customer experience.
I love what you do Mark and Im still hoping you'll do a day course in hand finishing one day or make a video to get us all started. Customers are very picky and I encourage them to not settle for anything that they don't love.
At one point I did have a few simple hand finished examples but felt I needed a range of 20 or so various hand finished styles to cover a variety of tastes.
Time will tell.
I am also very interested in what Orde02 is putting out at the moment too.
Keep posting Mark its great to get glimpses into your world.

Not your average framer
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Re: first attempt - cross grain hand finished effect.

Post by Not your average framer » Fri 11 Sep, 2020 10:30 am

Thanks Justin,

It's great to get glimpses into other members thinking and perspectives, I find you comments very helpful too and learn a lot from other who are doing things that are different to me, or have a different perspective to myself. I am hoping to provide some proper training seassons, probably early in the new near and they will need to by run from my workshop.

Obviously these courses will be for a much more limited number or people and those who come on a course will be working from one to side of a persex screen and me on the other side. There will also be ample extractor fans to remove plenty of air so that we are not breathing each offers air. As I won't need to rent the upstairs hall in the town hall any more. I won't need a minimum number of people to pay for the hall so prices will be kept quite low.

I have never needed to make lots of money out of teaching others, what I do. A large part of doing the training is about having fun doing something that I really enjoy and enjoying meeting people, so keeping the cost down is a major objective. So yes, training will be a possibility and it will be a lot cheaper that the normal going rate.

Also I am hoping to do the odd hand finishing day, when other forum members can pop in, see what I do, watch me do some demos, have a bit of a chat and drink my coffee, all for free. I like to do things which are fun! Also I have been thinking about the newbies and want to do something free, so the newbies can watch their expenditure. I think a lot of them are probably not very flush for cash,so a few demo and question time may well be helpful.
Mark Lacey

“Life is short. Art long. Opportunity is fleeting. Experience treacherous. Judgement difficult.”
― Geoffrey Chaucer

Not your average framer
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Re: first attempt - cross grain hand finished effect.

Post by Not your average framer » Sat 03 Oct, 2020 10:09 am

I have moved on a bit in my thinking since first trying this and probably will do this main as a single colour, plus a wash stipples into wax, then applied and the surplus wax and wash rubbed off. It is a more consistent way of operating, which makes it much easier for all four side of the frame to be consistent with each other and it also speeds up the time required to produce a finished frame. I am now finding that my preferred way of work requiring simple, quick and easy is starting to be part of this idea. Most ideas which do not meet this criteria general get dropped an fall by the wayside for me, sooner, or later. I also like ways, that I can work in batches and this is now looking possible, so I am feeling much more comfortable with this technique.

II think part of this technique may have some spin off''s when I come to making my driftwood, or rustic type country cottage frames. I like to re-invert some of what I do most years, so that what I do does not start to look boring to my customers. One of the main difficulties with aiming to be different, is that you don't want to be too set in your ways and lose traction with your customers. I heard today that local authorities are expecting 120,000 people to lose their jobs in Devon and Somerset this year. I can't say that I'm particularly surprised, although I did not have much idea about the numbers. They say that this will be the worst affected part of the U.K. This part of the country has not been all that easy for a while now and I knew that I would need to sharpen up my focus, when all this covid business started.

It takes time to change things and make the right moves and as I've been recovering from my stroke during this period, the months have been working on this have been most important. This will be a period unlike much of what we have encounter before and we really need to be on top of our game as the recessions starts to bite. Please be aware that the most dangerous phase in a recession, for business failures is the recovery phase. It's when you think that things are getting better, that's when cash flow is at it's most difficult. As demand starts to grow, the growth has to be funded with extra cash flow. There have always been winners and losers in past recessions, this recession will probably be the same. Those will have plenty of money, will be used to spending it on nice things, so the better end of the market will be the end with the money.

A lot of my new framing ideas are based around producing special looking frames and other items from good quality, but very carefully priced materials. A lot of the lower priced stuff, will be produced from off cuts and whatever bits and pieces that I can find. My digital camera is getting a bit passed it, but my wife is going to lend me her's to post some better picture on the forum and share some of these ideas as best as possible, I may even be able to have the odd open day, so members can drop in and see what is possible and perhaps go away with some helpful ideas. Not everyone has necessarily been planning along these lines, but I'm hoping to be able to offer some ideas that will be ready to run with a hopefully be a bit of help to some. I'll even have some free filter coffee, on hand as well.

As usual, what I am doing will be quick, easy and simple, but won't look cheap although the materials, will be fairly inexpensive, while also not being poor quality. As much as possible, we will get through this difficult time in fairly good shape and with sound cash flow. I am not the only one, on the forum who shares helpful ideas and we can all learn good things from each other. The bottom end of the market is going to be much harder to keep the money flowing, but there will be some sales volume still coming from there and I've got some good ideas for some of the cheaper end of the market too, which I will also share.
Mark Lacey

“Life is short. Art long. Opportunity is fleeting. Experience treacherous. Judgement difficult.”
― Geoffrey Chaucer

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