Saturday, August 13, 2011

The last two sets...

Before I leave for Australia, I need to finish these two sets. One is a classic scale general purpose set in dark brown, the other is, highly appropriately, an Australian set!

So far for both sets I have made the trees and covered the seats. Next the leather pieces will be cut, dyed and then the rest of the saddles can be assembled. Since coming up with my new tree technique I have had to re-design my patterns, so this stage has taken a little longer than I hoped it would. But the tree has to be right! If the tree is wrong, the saddle won't look good no matter what you do. I'm really pleased with both tree designs, and also very happy that my new technique transfers well to classic (1:12) scale.

Sorry about the photos, they are particularly rubbish today!

The Australian saddle is a bit of a hybrid. Many features are the same as an English saddle, like the base tree (although much deeper), and stirrup bars. But then many features are Western. For this particular saddle the customer wants to use a western cinch, so I'll be making what is known as a Bate's rig which uses dee rings like a western saddle. An additional over-girth can also be used and the rigging straps use Tackaberry buckles. The buckle has a hook on its base which the cinch goes on - allowing for very quick cinching and uncinching. I'll try and figure out how to make these buckles when the time comes to make the girth....

Sunday, August 7, 2011

Another Move on the Horizon!

Some of you may already know this but I can now make it more public knowledge. For the last 10 months my other half has been working in Australia on a rather gruelling schedule. I think since Christmas he's only spent 10 weeks at home and for half of that time I've been working, so we haven't seen much of each other. So, a few months ago we talked about moving to Australia again, so we could both have 'normal' jobs again and both be at home every evening and weekend.

And so it's happening. We have both secured jobs and will be moving at the beginning of October, all being well. We'll be living in Kalgoorlie in Western Australia, where we have lived previously for 18 months so we know it well and have a fair few friends there. Our house here will be rented out, although we still have to do some re-decorating and repairs. I will also have to do a big sort out of my model collection, many of which have already been with me once around the world so I will be selling off quite a large number. I have far too many now anyway.

So this also means that I will be unable to make any tack for a few months until my stuff arrives in Australia. I will be finishing off a couple of orders over the next few weeks and have contacted other people whose orders will be post-poned. Meanwhile I won't be taking on any new orders. I have to figure out how busy I will be with my new job, and I'd also like to be selfish and get a real horse of my own! I think I will finally have the means and time to be able to get my first horse, and hopefully do a bit of competing in eventing which is popular in the area.

So this blog, at this time next year, may well feature more about real horses than the model variety, but I'll still be making tack, just not very much and probably for myself or for the odd sale.