Thursday, June 6, 2013

Putting a face on Autism

A few months ago a family from Uniontown came and got my Poverty Barn. They got the 'friends and family' discount because they, like us, have seven kids. [Discounts are also given for using the same kind of soap, having red hair, and being an orphan] One of their children, Donnie, (I think the middle child) has Autism. I had been considering for some time to make up some sort of pin like the Irish pins that can be used for fundraisers or awareness.  My great nephew, Ethan, and a blog follower, Lisa's son, (also an Ethan), have Autism. It is less rare than we think, yet no one ever talks about it.

At the time of the pick-up, I promised to make up some pins that they could give away at their golf fund- raiser this Saturday. My thought was to use the symbol of the blue puzzle piece that looks like a person. It turned out way too flimsy after I bought a couple of puzzle sets and only got 3 possibles out of each box. Nix that idea.  Daughter-in-law Angie, had told me about a process to use where-in a matte gel medium is applied to a reverse image and transferred to wood.  It was my first go around with trying it but I think I like it.  However, they turned out too artsy and not really "brand identifiable" for the vision in my head.  I mailed them off to Uniontown and haven't heard back yet how they were received. I made them into magnets, not pins.  I'll give you a peek:

Donnie's group is out of Akron and is called The Autism Family Foundation.

I should have taken a better shot of these.  They were packaged individually before mailing.

These turned out very rustic. Not sure I would go with a non-painted surface again.

I ended up using the blue puzzle image but pasted the wood not the paper.  Made a difference.

The Team Donnie Golf Outing is this Saturday, June 8th, at 1:30 PM at the Brookledge Golf Club in Cuyahoga Falls. Pray they have a good turnout and great weather.


Tonight the cedar chest goes back home. When I got it, it looked like this. Yes, that is snow in the background.

It had a couple of issues, some gouging, magic marker....

The bottom was a little warped, but I glued, Bondo'd, screwed and stained it back to health.

It is a Lane cedar chest and this is how you read the date of manufacture. The first date on the serial number means the chest was made in 1945. The second  number gets reversed to being made on the 16th, and the 40 is reversed to April. Hence, this chest was made on April 16th, 1945.  Since 1972 these chests have a safety feature that prevents anyone from being locked inside and unable to get out. Gloria ordered a replacement one for free to be installed.  

I thought at first I would strip the chest and see what was under the layers of paint. (love my Purdy)

The wood was way too porous and and not all that beautiful.  Because of water damage, no amount of bleaching was going to hide that.

I painted it the color of the aqua water stain thinking that might be a good way to hide it in plain sight.

Turns out the chest was not going to the original intended, so back on the neutral trail and matching a cabinet they had that looked like this...

I started by mixing and diluting a maize and and applying in two coats with a sanded distress.

Then added another diluted mustard tone still letting the distressing show through.  Rubbed it on with a rag.

Then gave it a walnut Danish oil and let it cure.

Here you can see how the several tones of color added shading that replaced the curves that were absent. Finished it with some polyurethane.

For a novice, I was happy with the look.

The cedar chest gets to go join his sister.  Finally.

Thanks for trusting me with your treasures Gloria!

As ever,
La Verne

1 comment:

  1. LaVerne -- I LOVE those "artsy" Autism Pins with the puzzle piece. Let me know if you held any back or sent them all. They're beautiful and unique!