December 16, 2008

The things we take for granted.

Last Thursday we were hit with a pretty severe ice storm, where it rained, and rained, then froze. Our power was out for almost three days. Even now, five days later my sister still has no power (or hot water!) and they are saying it could be weeks until they get to fixing everyone. Yikes!

Of course there are now three snow storms in the forecast over the next five days. Maybe we will have a white Christmas after all.

November 7, 2008

Meet Little Miss Lola.
Monster #2. She's the 'baby' of the clan, and oh so photogenic, that I had to share.

It always amazes me how fast time goes by when you are busy. Now that everything is in order and I can find all my supplies, I can finally sit down and get some things finished up. I love the idea of being able to leave my projects out and just close the door until I can come back to them. Thus there will be no stealing by the furry little monsters. I have no doubt this will save me valuable time with each project.

I've unpacked the majority of my horses, and set up shelves for them. As silly as it seems, I find they inspire me, so it is good to look at them every day. Here are a couple of quick shots of the office. The space is so small, I could hardly fit that desk in there. The back corner…

…and the other side of the desk.

As you can see, this leaves me with a ton of workspace. Well, maybe not a ton, but much more than I had before ; )

Hopefully by next week, I will have some new finished items to post to the email list, so stay tuned.

October 13, 2008

We are now officially moved into our new home. While a lot remains to be done, it's a tremendous relief to be over and done with moving. Everything is now everywhere, proof that even careful packing doesn't go very far. And for now, all my precious models remain boxed up in stacks in my dining room (good thing I don't have a dining table).

A large portion of the past two weeks has been filled with prepping rooms and painting. But of course nothing can be easy. Not only did I figure out that the moldings are not white (like I thought), but they had been painted directly to the walls and upon removing them they would rip the drywall. What fun. Thank goodness for painters tape and lots of helping hands.

My temporary studio is almost in order, and I hope to soon get back into the swing of things…

September 15, 2008

Here's a preview of a very special tack project I'm working on. As you can see it will be quite adjustable. Have I mentioned how much I love my Lonestar? :)

September 10, 2008

Things over here have been as busy as ever. But even with all that is happening I've managed to put in some time on a few new tack items. Once listed to MH$P, both the jumper and the western set sold pretty quickly, which has definitely encouraged me to get more items going. I wasn't sure how well the jumper set would sell, as it was the first I've listed, but with all the positive feedback I'm definitely working on a few more. Next will be a set in a lighter color tan, with either a figure eight or a flash noseband, laced reins, running martingale, maybe even some boots. All the bells and whistles basically.

I've also had a chance to update my website with the new saddles. Pretty soon I'll have to divide english and western saddles apart!

No tack photos today, however for your viewing pleasure these are from a recent miniature horse show.

September 4, 2008

I've just listed both the hunter jumper tack set and the western hearts tack set up on MH$P. You can follow the MHSP link on the top of the column to the right to view the ads.

In anticipation of our up coming move, I've started packing up my studio. I'm about 75% through packing up my models, and I seem to have run out of those handy Peter Stone boxes. Luckily I still have plenty of bubble wrap!

August 29, 2008

After a long rainy summer the cool air of fall has finally arrived. Even the leaves have started to turn brilliant shades of red, orange and yellow. This is one of my favorite parts of living in New England and all I want to do is be out on the trails riding.

With the changing of the seasons, comes many other changes. This year is no exception. On September 29th we will be closing on our first home, and with that comes the multitude of tasks required with moving. I am beyond excited about our new place as I will finally have a spot to make into my studio. This winter while we are buried in snow we will transform the upper loft of the new, over sized two car garage into a studio where I will be able to keep my model hobby contained.

I've already begun thinking of a special tack project for the holiday season, which I'm hoping to release around Thanksgiving to allow plenty of time for Christmas giving. For now, I'll leave it at that.

August 24, 2008

With fall just around the corner, I've finally put the finishing touches on my two latest tack sets. I just couldn't resist showing off the western hearts set on my newly purchased Lonestar resin. He looks so nice under tack!

Something I have noticed about this blog, is how different it appears on different computers. I've been working off of my PowerBook G4 not thinking that blogger would differ too much from mac to pc since it is all web based. Well apparently my last few posts have some funny spacing issues when viewed from different computers and different browsers. Gotta love it. So for now, or until I can fix the 'issues', I'll just post the photos at the end of the posts! Enjoy!

August 14, 2008

just because…

Everyone can appreciate a great package. Today I received my long awaited wedding album from our photographer Nadra Edgerley. I just couldn't resist taking a few photos of the way it was packaged. Definitely worth the wait and the photographs are exquisite.

August 7, 2008

yahoo group!

I've started a yahoo group for updates on the latest items I have for sale. The plan is to release the new tack to the group first, and then list it on MH$P.

Go check it out!

western saddle

Here's a look at my newest western saddle. There will be three rio rondo conchos on each corner to add some shine. I was originally planning on putting studs in along the dark trim, but I think I've changed my mind at this point. We'll see how it looks once the silver is on there. I do however plan on making another studded roper saddle in the future, so stay tuned. The plan is for this saddle to work as both a working and pleasure saddle, so simple but not too plain.

The jumping set should be completed by the end of the weekend. I'm also working on getting a yahoo group up and running and will post the link once I've got the kinks worked out.

July 24, 2008

new prototype

I snapped a couple of quick shots in between the crazy rain we've been getting here. This is my prototype for a jumping saddle. Please excuse the lack of girth and the dressage pad.

This saddle is built on a RDLC english tree. I ended up custom dying the leather so it would match the lace I used for the bridle. This required lots of mixing and matching of dyes, but I think the results are pretty good. i like how level the saddle sits right now, but I'm still not too sure how I feel about how the gussets came out. I might try a new approach for the next saddle. They are nice and soft, but I'm thinking they need a bit more bulk to them. Plus, they seem to be hidden by the way this saddle pad fits in this photo.

July 23, 2008

check it out!

I can't believe it's been almost a month since my last post. eek! Needless to say I will have more updates soon, as I've been working away at some new tack items.

In the meantime I got an update from Danielle Feldman, who purchased a harness from me back in May. Her Lonestar resin "Dun In Squiggles" won a NAN Top Ten this year in CM Pleasure/Fine/Park Harness (yay!). She also used the harness at Stone Age Live and won the Champion Other Performance division.

Congrats to Danielle, and thanks so much for showing my tack!

Here's a pic Danielle sent me of "Dun In Squiggles" at NAN 2008.
(Painted by Danielle Feldman, carriage by Bill Duncan)

June 27, 2008

sneek peak...

It finally stopped raining long enough for me to get outside and take some photos of my works in progress. The lighting in my apartment is terrible, and I haven't had the best success with my flash (it would help if I knew how to use it), so everything comes out yellow. I need to experiment more with different lights, but that would require finding time to do that. And space. Two things I don't have. So for now, natural light is best.

This is the first of my three jumps. The plan is to have a small rock wall under the polls. The colors on this one are going to be burgundy, gray and white. I still need to make the wall and get some mortar to fill in the stone with. I love these little stones, they are so easy to work with! One thing that I realized, after I had put these standards together, was that the 1/2" jump cups fit very tightly on these 1/2" square poles. Thus they need to be sanded before assembly or the cups will scratch the paint. Of course I realize this
after putting it together... oh well next time.

This is my second jump, the caribbean themed one. It is almost complete. I still need to make a gate to go below the poles, which will be green. And of course, I'm still looking for some trees/bushes for the flower pots. I love the way this one has turned out so far.

The last jump will be a lot like the first one, but stained a medium wood color and have green (or blue) and white accents. I wanted to use something different for the 'box' area of the standards, so I haven't fully put them together yet. We'll see how it goes. This one will definitely be for sale. And I remembered to sand the posts down this time, so no scratching. ;)

June 19, 2008

where does the time go?

I haven't had a whole lot of free time lately to get much work done on any of my various projects. Lucky for me though, next week starts my two-day work at home, three-day in the office work schedule. That will save me an extra 3 hours per day just by not driving. What was I thinking living an hour and a half from where I work?

I decided to get out my airbrush a short while ago and get to work on my custom "Doc" horse, who is just itching for a base coat. This guy is/will be a portrait model of a friends paint horse. He has the most interesting sabino markings that keep spreading as he ages and, needless to say, he will require a lot of hand detailing to get those markings in. Anyhow, all was going well until I decided to clean out the airbrush, when I conveniently dropped the gun and broke the point. Lovely. Now I need a new airbrush. I swear this guy does not want to be finished.

In the meantime, I started a new project (I've always wanted to do this!): custom jumps, in trad scale. I was inspired when I found a jumper resin that I really like. I'm currently working on three now. Two will be a more traditional style show jump with slight differences (and color), and the third is a pretty elaborate caribbean inspired jump complete with palm tree type bushes. Well it will if I can find some. The hobby shops around here close awfully early, and get this: aren't open on the weekends! How frustrating. But, it will be worth it in the end, as this one is coming along quite nice.

Of course what jump set-up is complete with out a rider? I've started customizing one of Sue Kern's Juliets to a jumper doll. I'm very pleased with her so far, although I'm having a heck of a time getting her jacket to fit decently. I may have to start over on that one...

Those are my three big projects right now, or should I say my three priorities. But on the workbench I also have:

• a new western saddle — I haven't settled on a design yet
• a new hunter/jumper saddle set — I'm planning two of these right now
• the custom stablemate truck and trailer
• flitwick — base is done, flitwick just needs some color
• various other naked resins

June 8, 2008

a day at the races

To start, I have a love–hate relationship with horse racing. But, after watching Big Brown win the Preakness with a remarkable run, I thought how cool would it be to see him run in the Belmont, and possibly make history?

I got my hands on a few tickets, and so we set out for a weekend in New York. Coincidently,
The Horse exhibit was showing at the Museum of Natural History this weekend, so of course we had to stop there too. Very cool.

Saturday, morning started early as we made a mad dash to board the first train to Belmont Park out of Penn Station. I think mad dash is an understatement. Luckily we got seats and didn't have to stand for the forty min train ride. We arrived at the park around 11:30 am. It was bright, sunny and humid. And it only got hotter as the day went on. I think it only reached 88, but sitting there in the sun, it felt a lot hotter than that. Luckily we had sunscreen, and we weren't about to give up our seats to go sit in the shade!

For me, this was not just racing, but a photo opportunity, as I love to photograph horses. My favorite of the day was this one of White Tie. Taken during the parade of the 2nd race.

The first race was at noon, and about every 20-40 mins after that. With each race the crowd of people grew and grew. By the time 6:20 rolled around there was hardly any room to stand. We stood on our benches to see as they paraded the horses in front of the grandstands. Of course by now the entire world knows the results of the race, and unfortunately Big Brown couldn't pull off a Triple Crown victory. Oh well, it wasn't his day. It was still a remarkable race, and the energy of the crowd was incredible. To top it all off, there were no breakdowns.

Despite the heat, the sun, the sunburn, the crowds, the lines, the overflowing bathrooms, and the long train ride home (standing) followed by an even longer car ride out of NYC, it was a good day. A once in a life time experience for sure.

May 16, 2008

I've finally had the chance to take some decent photos and post my completed pleasure harness for sale on MH$P. I ended up re-working the bridle for this set as my prototype bridle just wasn't working the way I wanted it to. This way the entire thing is more adjustable. 

I've decided that from now on any tack item I sell will come complete with a certificate of authenticity, so I've been busy designing cards for that as well. This should help me keep track of what I've made and kept, vs. what I've sold, as each item will be given a number. 

I've posted more photos of the completed harness to my webshots album.

April 7, 2008

This is a project that I had intended to start at least a couple of years ago, 
possibly more now that I think about it. I got this stablemate truck and trailer 
when they first came out, thinking how great it would be to customize them 
to be more realistic looking. Well, they've sat in pieces on my desk until
just a few days ago. 

This revamped project go a new start after I experimented with body work 
on my car and ended up with a can of left over custom black paint. I thought how 
perfect for the truck! and off it went. We'll see how the paint does over time. 

Here are some pics of the truck in it's current state, and the primed trailer. 
The truck is missing the chrome parts as well as the little details, but they are to 
come. I haven't quite made up my mind on what I'm going to do with the trailer 
yet. I might have to experiment with some pin striping...

March 28, 2008

This weekend I thought it would be nice to go back to something basic.
So, after rummaging through my tack box and finding some really nice Sulser 
buckles, I created this simple stable halter. I didn't know how well the 
pre-dyed leather would take to tooling, but I must say it came out very nice.

February 22, 2008

At long last, I've finally taken photos of the completed pleasure harness.

January 11, 2008

I've decided to ring in the new year (a bit late, I know) with a new design.
I find that creating new items from scratch is a fun and exciting challenge. Plus it
gives me something new to think about instead of more variations on the same
original design, which I must admit after a while gets a bit dull. So anyway, after
hours of research I've created a pattern for a pleasure harness. The prototype
is nearly complete, with just the bridle remaining. Once I have the actual harness
completed, I'll post it to MH$P. If I get a good response, I may consider taking
a few orders, but I'm not sure yet.