Wednesday, July 21, 2021

Mandala LXXIII and LXXV

(Above:  Mandala LXXIII. Framed: 14 3/4" x 14 3/4. Found objects hand-stitched to a block of an antique quilt.  Found objects include: A clock face, keys, green casino chips, beer bottle caps, plastic dairy pull tabs, clock gears, buttons, and eight discs for a cookie press.  Click on any image to enlarge.)

When I posted Mandala LXXIV, I realized that I missed one in the series.  I had finished, framed, and entered Mandala LXXIII in my inventory book, but I hadn't photographed it or featured it on this blog.  Of course, recent weather didn't cooperate with my photography plans.  I take pictures in the afternoon, when the sun isn't hitting the garage door.  Every time I thought to take pictures, it was raining.  I had to wait ... until today ... when I also had Mandala LXXV ready for its photo shoot.


(Above:  Mandala LXXIII, detail.)

I'm really pleased with the casino chips.  I've got lots more of them.  Each one was pre-drilled with five holes, four near the edges and one in the center.  This worked perfectly with the beer caps too.  I'm using a 1/6" drill bit.  I have a small stash of them because it is really easy to accidentally break the bit.


(Above:  Mandala LXXV. Framed: 14 3/4" x 14 3/4".  Found objects hand-stitched to a block of an antique quilt.  Found objects include: Part of a rotary dial's receiver; two bracelets; four shower curtain hangers; sewing machine bobbins; red, plastic lids; two gold-toned hinges; Starbucks coffee stirrers; assorted belt buckles; buttons; metal devices from a random, dismantled machine; and laminated, late 19th century, cancelled two-cent stamps.)

For Mandala LXXV, I used my tiny drill bit but only on the four corners of the laminated, late 19th century, cancelled two-cent stamps.  My grip strength is very, very strong with a threaded chenille needle and my fingers have thick calluses, but I still have trouble getting through heavy-duty lamination.  Thus, I drill the holes I need.

(Above:  Mandala LXXV, detail.)

I happen to have a nice collection of these early, cancelled stamps.  They came from Bill Mishoe's auction along with all sorts of other stuff.  Most were still attached to the corner of an early envelop. As a kid, I collected stamps.  I knew exactly how to soak the stamps off the paper and dry them on a pane of glass.  For a couple days, our guest bathroom was occupied with stamps ... and also Green Back stamps!  A friend donated a nice collection of those ... many pasted into the redemption booklets.  I soaked them all off.  I intended to visit FedEx Office to laminate them but I knew it would be rather expensive.  Google to the rescue!  I learned that my Seal Dry Mount press would do the job and that Office Depot sold packages of 125 laminating pouches for less than I once spent on the Tampa Nugget cigar bands I'd been using.  (I was running out of laminated Tampa Nugget cigar bands too, but I have literally thousands that could be laminated.  They were donated by another friend!)

(Above:  Laminated ephemera.)

I am now quite an expert at laminating vintage ephemera.  Of course, I still need to cut all these things out, but I'll do that soon!

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