Mittwoch, 26. Februar 2014

Leather and Yarn

 I didn't like my old belt pouches anymore, so I had to think of a new one. Ok, bad excuse, I simply wanted to make this one for ages ;)
I had some leather already and got a mounting plate for the Birka pouch. This version is bigger than the original find, but I lke it. I found no decent strap end, so I took a piece of reindeer antler and carved one with an design from the metal mount.

When the belt pouch was done, I thought, I needed a wallet. There are various finds from Birka of little rolled up leather wallets, sometimes still with coins inside.
They were decorated with gilded leatherstrips.

Reconstruction and original finds from Bj 750. Arbman, Taf. 130.
Wallet from Bj 904. Arbman, Taf. 132.

I did my interpretation with soft green leatherstrips. They are braided through slots in the leather of the actual wallet to form a checked pattern.

 After doing all this leather working, I needed sone yarn between my fingers angain. But I didn't leve the site of Birka ;)
I did this pattern as a brocade some years ago. It was my first encounter with brocading technique. Though I love the technique and the look it produces, this time I wanted to weave the pattern in a faster way. For brocade is easy, but soooo slow, if you do it assiduosly.

Samstag, 15. Februar 2014

Birka Brocade Bling

 A few days ago, I saw Asrun's pretty brocaded band on her blog, I remembered that I did show the beginnings of my B20 band here, but I didn't show the finished one yet.
So, here it is :)
I made a rather long break while the band was on the loom. I simply couldn't see it anymore, for the weaving was very slow. Brocading is easy, but counting threads will make you insane after a while ;) (Yep, even more insane than I'm already are!)
So, it seems making long breaks is not good, as the width of the band was a bit different when I started again.
But still I like the result, which is about 1,93m. Phew.

Donnerstag, 6. Februar 2014

My very first knife!

 All the time I see those beautiful knifes everyone makes. Now I finally worked up the courage to do it myself and give it a try.
As materials, I chose a Lauri70 Blade, a brass fitting, reindeer antler, walnut wood, buffalo horn and leather. And a little mother of pearl thingy.

I measured and cut everything and wrote numbers and marks on it to be sure the direction of the grain was right in the end.

Then the smelly part ;) I set the parts in plce with epoxy glue and clamped the knife. To make sure that the preassure didn't affect the blade, I cut a slot (just a bit longer than the blade) into a strip of wood and placed the blade in the slot.

After drying, I rasped, filed and sanded the handle. Looked more like a knife now! ;)

I decided to carve the antler part. I found a beautiful pattern from the Isle of Man (fig. 28 - 3).

 when the carving was finished, I tanned it with an experimental mixture of vinegar, iron sulphate -which I normally use for plant dyeing- and coffee.
Then I set a little drop shaped mother of pearl chip into the back of the handle and oiled the whole thing.


I have made a knife!

Huzzah! :D

Countertrading with Petr Florianek

Last year Petr from Gullinbursti asked me to make him some shiny embellishment for his viking time based reenactment.
He wanted a tabletwoven braid, brocaded with silver. The original was one of the braids from the Mammen grave, Denmark:

I used the pattern notation by Egon Hansen and the photos of the original. The info on the site of the Danish National Museum is very good and you can zoom in up to the finest detail.
The Materials are fine red wool and a very fine thread of spun silver with a silken core.

Furthermore he asked me to make him some posaments as found at Birka, Sweden. More precisely, grave nr. 524.

I made the posaments for him in silver wire and some more in brass. You know, I was in the right mood for mass production then ;)

So, this was my part :)

As Petr is an excellent bladesmith and knifemaker, his part of the trading was a beautiful folding knife.
The description from his page says:
"Wrought iron back, HC steel edge, stag antler handle slabes carved in ringerike style tendrils, silver ring, iron rivets, handmade glass bead."

Once again, thank you, Petr! :)
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