I’ve spent most of the week working on what I’m calling ‘tinker’s wagon infrastructure’, or stuff that’s gonna make the build easier — from buying a bench vise to making cutting guides specifically tailored to work with my roommate’s circular saw, thus allowing me, for the first time in my life, to cut wood, or indeed anything, in a straight line.
But more about that next week! Due to circular saw issues, I spent the latter part of last week on another task I’ve been putting off, that of Making My Space Pretty.
Above you’ll see the purple shelf I finally got hung up, & gorgeously adorned with pretty things. It’s above my desk, so that I can look up & see it there.
IT TURNS OUT that if you use right-angle thingers & clamps to hold your 2×2 pieces together, & then GLUE them into place, & ONLY THEN do you drill the pilot holes & put in the wood screws, it works a WHOLE LOT BETTER. Continue reading those other shelves
not that I’m remotely done with the sewing, mind you
I think a lot of you are familiar with what my booth usually looks like. For those of you who haven’t seen it, the top picture is what I’ve been running with for the last several years. It’s a pretty standard wedge tent, with one long side held up on poles instead of staked to the ground. It’s sturdy, not terrible to put up, & it works.
I got the idea a year or two back to use the bits that hang down from the side of the roof — you can just see one on the left side of the tent; they’d be part of the door if I were using it as a wedge tent — to extend the space the tent overs out to the side a bit. This spring I finally got the chance to try it out.
It works! I mean, I knew that I could add a couple of poles & _do_ it; what I didn’t know was if it would make enough extra space to be worth the effort. Once I had the thing up? Yeah. SO worth it.
I’ve _also_ needed new sidewalls for years. I’ve been using too-small pieces of canvas, extra tablecloths, & even a random spare shower curtain for that, & it. Hasn’t LOOKED good. It looks like crap, to be honest, & I’m lucky I haven’t had to deal with serious wind. I couldn’t do anything about it until I tried the thing with the flaps, though, so I’ve been waiting to get that started, too.
I still have to sew a bunch of ties & loops to the side walls, but they’re cut, they’re hemmed, & they more-or-less fit.
…they also still need some adjustment, but I’ll be putting another pole on the side that’s drooping, & shifting some things around, & I think they’ll be in pretty good shape by Battlemoor.
Y’all, it’s gonna look SO good, & I am SO excited that I’m finally in a place where I can work on this project.
It’s honestly well past time, & I want to thank my friend OctopusGallery for giving me a poke towards using less plastic in my packaging.
I know, I know, look, there’s been Stuff. But I’m getting there.
Some of it’s easy enough — the bags I give out at shows are easy enough to replace with brown paper bags, although it’s gonna be a while until I use up what I already have in stock. It’s also pretty easy to switch to brown paper for the smaller bags I put products in when I ship out orders.
But the soap & bath salts? More of a problem, because people want to see what they look like.
Fortunately there’s a pretty decent solution. Compostable plastics have been around for a while, & they’re getting better & better. I had some fun sorting through competing claims about how WELL they compost, mind you — one site said their compostable plastics broke down as easily & quickly as a leaf, which is, it turns out, actually not the case. Needless to say I went elsewhere.
But what I’m finding is that a good compostable plastic will compost Just Fine in the sort of industrial composting center that a lot of big cities use to take care of leaves & such, & if you don’t live in the big city, they’ll still compost okay in your backyard compost pile, though it’ll take maybe a year or two.
Given how rarely I actually remember to do anything with my compost, that’s not a problem. If you’re running your compost through faster than that, it might be a bit trickier, but I sat down & thought about it, & you know, even if most of the compostable plastic I’m gonna start using still winds up in a landfill, at least it’ll sit there & compost, instead of breaking down into microplastic. So, you know? I’m good with it.
I’ve found compostable plastic replacements for most of the plastic bags I use. I haven’t ordered any of it yet — it’ll take a while to use up what I already have — but I’ll get there.
I haven’t started looking for compostable plastic lip balm tubes yet & I don’t know if there even is such a thing, but I can hope. I suspect I’ll be out of luck with finding compostable plastic in tubes like I’m using for the foot salts, but there are other options I can poke at.
& of course there’s still the plastic lids for all of my glass containers, but eventually I might be able to do something about those, too.