I'm starting this blog well in advance of having this website going live, in fact before I even have a website. The reason is to illustrate some of what it takes, for me at least, to get everything ready.
Making the chairs has been comparatively simple compared to preparing to sell them from my own web site. The new stuff that I've needed to learn includes photography : how to use a digital camera, setting up lights, etc; manipulating the images on my computer using Gimp (similar to Photoshop); How to make labels using Glabels; and what to say about each chair, which sent me back to the books to refresh my memory about the background of these chairs.
Don't get me wrong. I'm not complaining about any of the frustratingly slow learning curves. I've found that I'm enjoying learning about so many new areas but I should have realized that it would all take much longer than originally expected.
All of these are now behind me, except that I will struggle again when I return to them. The next decision is which host site to use.
Meanwhile, I am working on a miniature Windsor side chair. The plans I am using are from Make a Windsor Chair by Michael Dunbar in American Woodworker #24, January/February 1992. The bow of the back was bent several months ago and now I am working on the seat. In his 2003 book, Dunbar lists and illustrates the following traditional tools/processes used for hollowing a seat : roughing out the top surface with a gutter adze, followed by a scorp to clean up the adze marks and to improve the contours. He then finishes the surface with a compass plane, travisher and small spokeshave, and, finally, scraper and sandpaper.
I do have miniature spokeshaves but I need more than just these. My choices seem to be carving gouges, or make miniature whatevers to get the job done. Since I have a few carving gouges these are my first choice.
Now, I've been an architectural woodworker for thirty years and during that time I sharpened my planes, chisels and a few gouges using a medium grit oil stone and never had a problem, But now I'm working on a small scale with pine, everything has to be much sharper.