Monday, September 27, 2021

Learning New Things

     You learn something new every day. I really do believe that. It might be something really little and often it might not even seem like learning. Sometimes the new things stand out. The other day I learned that when a volcano erupts it causes a bunch of lightning. I didn't know that! That was a cool science fact I learned.
     Other things I learned recently were some super easy shortcuts to how I make my watches and med-bands for the cross country kits. I have been making those things for years. They have never been super complex items, but they are now so easy to make, and make consistently, and I am shocked with myself that I didn't think of these things before. 
     The first trick is how to easily get perfectly round watch faces. I have always glued the printed stopwatch to some cardstock, and then I cut them into tiny circles and glue them onto a bit of ribbon for a watch band. Not particularly challenging or time consuming, but not always super precise since they are so tiny. Recently I started thinking about the watch faces and how they likely were the exact size of the hole punch. Turns out they are! So I glued the sheet of watch faces onto a piece of cardstock, let everything dry, and then punched them out with the hole punch. Nice and precise. And easy! I have no idea why I didn't think of this before. 
     Another new trick I should have figured out years ago has to do with box tape. I can't think if I have used this trick before, it's possible, but for the most part it is new to me. For making the med-bands I have always cut out the medical info sheets, glued them onto a bit of plastic (from a plastic baggie) and then glued another sheet of plastic over them. Not hard to do, but the glue will sometimes decide to let go. So this time around I glued the sheets onto the plastic and then simply covered them with a piece of box tape. How did I not think of that before? I can, potentially, just stick the sheets to a piece of box tape and then add a second piece of box tape on top. I am also sort of thinking of sticking them to a piece of colored duct tape or maybe a matte piece of scotch tape. There are options. But the process is super easy. 
         I have been making miniatures in one form or another since I was very little. I have often remade old things in new materials, sometimes with really excellent results. Sometimes trying a new technique works out, and sometimes it's another thing to add to the list of things that didn't work. But when something does work it's pretty awesome. And looking at the world in a different way than normal (like a hole punch being the size of a miniature watch face) can often make the difference. 


ELauer said...

If you could print your watch faces directly onto the cardstock, it would save you the additional step of gluing the printed page onto the cardstock. Most printers should be able to handle the thickness of cardstock to print on (I know mine does).

Anne Field said...

I usually use black card stock as my base. Which I can’t print on. Though I am sure it will work with a light color.

timaru star ii said...

As a long-time tackmaker, I can verify that 'discovering' an easier way to do something you've been doing for years is not rare. "Why didn't I think of that!?" happens to me pretty consistently; not a lot, but steadily. It must have something to do with how the brain operates over time.