Christmas 2007 is Finally Over

How is it that I can make such a pronouncement today, March 5th, 2008? Well, quite simply, because on Monday night I finished the clock I was making for , and last night, I gave it to her. I offered to change a few things and do some more work on it, but she declined, so it stayed at her house (see below for pictures). Which means Christmas is really over. Next on the list? Winter is going to be over. I know this for two reasons. One, I am going to work furiously on the scarf I am knitting for . The moment I finish it, Spring will come and winter will be gone for months on end, and the new scarf will have to go into hiding. It will probably get lost in the move, potentially without even being photographed. But the important thing is that winter will be gone. The other reason for winter’s impending end is that I still have winter-themed decorations scattered about the house. Not many, but a few. And the fact that they haven’t come down yet means that Spring will soon come and it will be an embarrassment that I’ve let them stay out so long.

So, you see, I have this whole winter-being-longer-than-a-stay-in-hell thing under control. I’ll fix that right up for you and get Spring in here pronto. Until then, using Murphy’s Law, do your own small part to get winter gone. Post your plans in the comments.

Oh, you wanted pictures and stuff of the clock, didn’t you? Well, I shan’t disappoint. The trigger for getting this project finally wrapped up was a DIY contest over at Design*Sponge that ended on the 2nd of March. I was hoping to get finished and send in projects and then someone would see my fabulous work of art and decide I should win the $1500 prize. Alas, I didn’t finish in time. Sure, that’s why I didn’t win.

So about a billion years ago, also known as November, I bought a rectangular clock base at Michaels. pointed out the need to have a place for the clock mechanism to fit, so we got some lumber at Home Depot. I carefully measured and cut (with the table saw!) the pieces for the back frame, and then we glued them on. It worked fairly well, though as is always the case, there were some gaps. So, wood filler and an electric sander to the rescue! What resulted is:

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The the project sat untouched in the spare bedroom for months, waiting, alone. It was too cold to spray paint in the garage, even with the door closed. And then there were a few times when it warmed up, and I just didn’t get motivated like I should have. Friday night, I turned to and said, “I’m finishing the clock this weekend, and I need your help staying on track.”

So after dinner, I headed out to the garage (after moving my car, of course) with my primer and high gloss black spray paints.

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There was some additional sanding between the first coat of glossy and the second, mainly because I didn’t sand after the primer coats like I should have. Whatever. It all turned out fine.

The scary moment was Sunday night when it came time to put a hole in the beautiful piece of wood. Only scary because if I messed it up, what was I going to do then?

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Then came the decoupaging of the Elvis picture to the base. The book that the picture came from had high-gloss, very heavy stock paper. This is not ideal for decoupaging, as I came to learn. Also not ideal? Black pictures. When I got bubbles (which was inevitable, especially due to the thick nature of the paper) and I tried to press them out, wrinkles were created and some of the black came off of the print. It’s barely visible, and one could say that it lends itself to the charm of the piece. After the print was secured to the base, I cut a hole in it where the hole in the base was. An Xacto knife was involved, at ‘s suggestion. So very many coats of decoupage later, I had a mostly finished product.

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Those pictures are with the decoupage medium (Modge Podge) still drying. I did some coats with horizontal brush strokes but most with vertical. The end result was a textured surface looking almost like canvas.

Then I (with some help) installed the clock mechanism, and super-glued a star-shaped rhinestone at the 12 o’clock position.

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Tuesday night, I gave it to . We hung it up for pretend in her living room, because her kitchen was not photographable at the moment. She’s going to use it as inspiration to decorate her kitchen.

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Voila! Incidentally, I got the idea from Instructables (based on the Literary Clock [link removed], which I thought was super-cool but I couldn’t find a children’s book that was perfect – another time, I guess).