High-maintenance Posing as Low-maintenance
I think I'm establishing a solid track record for selecting projects that appear to be all about no-frills, easy-going style but in reality are a royal pain for the kind person helping me execute my vision ('royal' being a not-so-subtle reference to the Jane Austen-inspired royal-iced cookie incident of 1998).
While I hope I've always had a healthy dose of respect for the professional upholsterers and craftspeople I've called upon in the past, watching my dad space and position nailheads on the recently completed (much appreciated) DIY sawhorse table was an eye opener. We experimented with laser levels, old fashioned levels, string lines and homemade templates but nonetheless some of the little buggers started to squirm out of place when tapped with the hammer. And even for those of us who like imperfect things, crooked nailheads are just sad. So, getting them all lined up was no easy feat. If you've ever attempted a project like this with an awl, or have your own tips, please share your insights!
It goes without saying that the next time I casually ask an upholsterer to space nailheads one and three quarters of an inch apart over grosgrain on a curvy chair, I'll better understand the effort that entails.
[Ivory Maktas, 1700s and 1800s, Turkey. From a private collection. Image courtesy of the Michael C. Carlos Museum.]
As mentioned the other day, exquisite tools, sophisticated craftsmanship and painstaking artistry will be on view as part of two concurrent Islamic calligraphy exhibitions opening this week at Atlanta's Michael C. Carlos Museum. In addition to learning more about this subject, I'm looking forward to seeing how the curators highlight all the small objects in the show and I plan to report on the preview shortly.
After my desk was finished, Dad discovered decades-old sawhorse hardware left behind by my granddad. Usually I favor vintage hardware, but as it turned out, I think the sleeker, newly purchased steel brackets better suited my project.
Nailhead image used in collage shown at top is from True Value Hardware. All other pictures are my own.