Thursday, July 31, 2014

Pittsburgh Creative Arts Festival

Pittsburgh Creative Arts Festival logo
Aug. 22-23, 2014 | Four Points Sheraton North

3 Weeks to Go!
We are just three weeks away from the first-ever Pittsburgh Creative Arts Festival, and summer is flying by! We have been busy with preparations and details for the upcoming festival, organizing the raffle prizes, donations and goody bags.
Thanks to the generosity of so many of the people and companies that have stepped forward to support this new show, we will have goody bags at the Friday evening reception for the FIRST 150 PEOPLE.
We will also have lots of raffle prizes for which you will receive tickets. Some of what you can look forward to include: fabric bundles, charm packs, jelly rolls, buttons, beads, specialty papers, fibers, thimbles, silk ribbons, yarns, notions, handbags, jewelry, books, magazines, notepads, needles, threads, patterns, kits, greeting cards, burlap, totes, accessories and more. Wow!
At this writing, our sponsors and supporters include:
With your admission ticket for Friday evening, you'll receive your choice of a complimentary glass of wine, a beer, a house cocktail or a soft drink... along with delicious hors d 'oeuvres, a sneak preview of the market, and special Friday evening demos. It should be a fun time, and a nice way to end your week.
Our Grand Prize drawing, with a winner selected at the end of the day on Saturday, is a One Year Membership to TechShop Pittsburgh, in Bakery Square. The TechShop community-based workshop and prototyping studio is on a mission to democratize access to the tools of innovation. Its seventh location, TechShop Pittsburgh, is excited to offer the Pittsburgh maker community more than 16,000 sq. ft. of workshops equipped with world-class tools and equipment, computers loaded with design software featuring the Autodesk Design Suite, hundreds of classes each month, and the support and camaraderie of a community of like-minded makers. An amazing facility! Come both days and getTWO chances to win the membership to the TechShop... a $1,395 value!
Be sure to check out all of the lovely items our exhibitors have, perfect gifts for everyone, and supplies for your new interests.
As a reminder, we will once again be a drop-off point for the Western Pennsylvania Division of the Salvation Army's Annual Fabric Fair. The collections are not limited to fabric... you may also bring notions, yarns, threads and most craft-related items. There are special sections at the Fair for each category. I know many of us clean out during the summer months; I've seen lots of these items at sales this summer. This is a great way to support the Salvation Army and to feel good about donating your unused items.
Just as a reminder, many of the classes will not be available as a drop-in onsite. They require advance sign-up, due to the teacher needing to prepare in advance for the students. Please be sure to make your class selections by August 15.
Last but not least, congratulations to Pam Volz of Pittsburgh, who won ourPoland prize pack from last month's newsletter. Pam's prize will be waiting for her at the registration table.
With Warm Regards,

Barb Grossman and Ann Szilagyi, Co-Founders   

Creative Arts Festival Update is published by Pittsburgh Creative Arts Festival,P.O. Box 37, Kingwood, WV 26537 / (412) 963-7030. We do not share our mailing list with any third party.

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Monday, July 7, 2014

Trees, trees, trees!

Brouhaha is posing with three of the seven cherry logs given me by Chris' coworker. Word has gotten out about me and wood turning, and trees have been coming in from everywhere. And you would not believe the work that goes in to cutting up logs like this for turning blanks, even part way.

The problem with trees is that once they are separated into log chunks and the sap stops flowing, the wood begins to split. Look at any piece of firewood that has sat around for any length of time and you will see it splitting. This is problem number one, and it is a big one. If I get a piece of tree onto the lathe and that tree has splits that I haven't dealt with, that chunk of wood is liable to fall apart and go flying off in all directions - possibly clocking my noggin in the process.

So the first thing that needs to be done is to cut off anything that might have split, and to remove the very center of the tree, called the pith. Go look at that firewood again, and you will see that the splits begin at the center, at the pith. So that has to go. Then what is left can be cut up into blanks. I could chainsaw one of those cherry logs into usable chunks in the space of a day. One day, one log. So that is a day spent with the chainsaw, and NOT with the lathe. And when someone gives me a quantity of tree parts, this has to be done NOW. The longer you wait between falling the tree and cutting up the tree, the more of the wood gets thrown away. BUT, it does make for nice firewood.

I've been blessed. I acknowledge that. Trees have been coming at me from all directions, and I now have a variety of types of wood for turning. And the leftover bits go to the firewood racks that we have all over the place. I even had to go to some auxiliary storage out behind Rudy's shop. We now have enough firewood stored to keep us warm for the next several years. And I have enough blanks cut up and sealed. I probably have more blanks than I can use in my lifetime. So it is time to say, enough. I have enough apple, maple, black walnut and cherry to last me for years. Then there's the misc. department, which is substantial. Unless you have a variety of tree that I don't have, and it is spectacular, I can't take it. 

But thanks.