Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Storm aftermath

We returned home from Maine (after securing the house there as much as we could), knowing that any heavy rain would cause water in the basement. Surprisingly, I was able to contain the water leaking in with vigilant mopping. But with all the aged, decrepit trees with dead limbs, the only one to come down was a 20 foot tall apple tree (the tag said "dwarf Macintosh") I planted about 2o years ago.
Power was out a couple of days, but otherwise, all is well.

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Another painting framed

Now that the big show is over, I am getting into the far corners and ferreting out things to finish up. I had forgotten I even made this frame, black over red ground, water gilt liner. I don't even remember if it was intended for a particular painting, but I put this one in it, it looked good, and I can check off another project on the list.
Yes, another one in the "Wiscasset Psychic" series.

Monday, August 22, 2011

Yes, I do windows.

Had I only known at the beginning of the project how tedious window sash repair is, I would have gone for replacements on the first floor, as I did on the second. Of course, even at that, I wish I had decided on replacements for the second floor BEFORE I repaired all the sash up there.
But, all good things must come to an end, and I have taken out the glass from the sash of two more windows, and will now scrape, repair, repaint and reglaze. When this is done, only two more windows left!

Sunday, August 21, 2011

Shrewsbury Art Festival

The Artist Guild of Shrewsbury ( ) held their firt arts festival at Dean Park in Shrewsbury, Massachusetts. Not a bad showing for the first time out, and the weather was perfect. Artists could rent individual spaces, or show work with the group under a pavillion.

Thursday, August 18, 2011

Smoking at Old Sturbridge Village

After a business meeting, I helped some other members of the Historical Society of Early American Decoration ( with a decorating project at our new research center at Old Sturbridge Village (

Smoke decoration is done by using a sooty candle or lamp (we get the candle to produce more soot by holding a large nail in the flame), letting the still wet paint or varnish trap the soot on the service. The swirls of soot leave a "marbled" appearance. One drawback, as you can see from the picture, is that you need to have the item above the smoking candle, and for these cabinet doors, that made it a three-person job.

Will post more when the doors are re-installed. For more about the group decorating the building, go to:

Monday, August 15, 2011

Union Antiques Festival

Union, Maine is the site of the Maine Antiques Festival every August (, and we were there again. It is outdoors mostly, or in sheds or under tents. It ranges from the formal to the primitive, from the high end to, well, whatever. The displays are not usually elaborate, but some put in more effort than others, and at the end of the weekend you have a nice layer of wind-blown dust over all.
The weather this year was just about as good as it gets. We had a good time, sold some stuff, and got to display some of the gilding work.