Friday, January 17, 2014

Creating A Lifetime Gift - The Creation of A Tray

As I continue my journey into folk art, Rosemaling, Pennsylvania Dutch, Swedish and Danish folk art designs, I find that there is great commonality and yet room for diversity. I have mixed them up and laughingly call what I create Krugmaling or literally Krug Painting. My gift to my daughter this Christmas is a perfect point in fact.

I very much wanted to create something that was attractive, a kind of home decor if you will and yet usable! I had purchased some thick sturdy trays at a show and decided that the time had come to to use them.

My wife wanted to put a needlepoint project she did on the bottom of one and cover it with glass. I wanted to create a beautiful piece of crafters art as a Christmas present. Staining them both dark made both of the trays work for what they were going to display.

I doodled a lot creating this tray. There are a whole bunch of different elements here. A little Rosemaling, a little Pennsylvania Dutch, Danish folk designs and some Krug additions to spice it up and keep the tray working as a whole.

One of the things I did that was different was not repeat the pattern along the length inside. I wanted a top and bottom. If you look carefully at the center there are three flowers under the center flower on top but not on the bottom. The bottom portion has two flowers spread out. Why? I just wanted there to be a difference. Standing up displayed it makes sense and is very attractive. It is almost craft painterly.

I wanted bright cheerful colors to stand out against the dark wood. I think I achieved that quite well. I didn't make it garish or unbelievable. I only painted the long side edges because if it is used, Varathaned or not, the paint will get rubbed off when using the handles over time. Only the sides are decorated borrowing the theme from inside the tray.

To create it, I stained the wood first with Minwax black walnut, let that dry a few days and then I sketched the entire design with a white chalk pencil. While it makes no difference, I started with the largest flowers, then smaller flowers. There was a base and several layers on top to give them a sort of 3D appearance. Once those were in place I did the leaves, darker greens on the bottom of each branch, lighter on the top. Finally all the accents were added last. A pale green to accent the leaves and red and blue to accent the flowers so that ALL colors were used to tie the entire pattern together.

I have not done something this for my store, yet. Not sure if it would sell. The concept though is wonderful. You get a wonderful display piece and when the occasion requires it, a useful item for entertaining. This is a concept well worth working on!

Please visit for a wide variety of craft and fine art paintings and photography.
Thank you for visiting!

1 comment: