Sunday, March 3, 2013

Walls 3: Wattle and Daub

Good ol’ wattle and daub, CLASSIC!

- To make a loom I first taped two small scraps of plastic to the top and bottom of the 3/4” x 1-1/2” (20mm x 45mm) hole in the end wall I‘ll be using (no photo), then glued five 3/64“ (.047) plastic rods to it. The jig to hold the loom is just two small MDF scraps with short lengths of bamboo skewers glued on. The notches serve no purpose.
- Taped the loom to the jig, tied one end of thick thread to the top of one of the skewers, wove it to the other side, looped it twice, then headed back. Back and forth and so on. Very easy to do but does take a bit of time. I ended up using four lengths of 3’ long thread in all.

UPDATE! See end for improved jig!

- The finished wattle weave. I super-glued it to the rods (BLUE) to keep it from unraveling and cut it from the frames (RED).
- Trimmed to fit the pretimbered/black primed hole in the end wall and glued into place.

The insert was painted neutral gray. My usual filler/paint mix was used to fill in all the other panels and carefully applied around the wattle. I even adding some “bits” within. Next I painted the timbers a dark brown with light gray dry-brushing. When dry I heavy dry-brushed all of the panels of the wattle an off-white, then scrubbed in some dirt along the bottom edge as well as some grass.
Interesting how the photo makes the inserts look much browner than they really are. I’ll have to have a stern talk with my photographer, Phileas Phlashpan.

The finished end wall.

The back is finished in a similar manner except I added some cracks using an Xacto blade and painted it neutral gray. I dabbed some almost dry paint here and there in the flat areas. Easy subtle texture!

Finished back.

After using the original jig a couple of times I came up with this improvement. It has a plug-in with spacers. Now it’s even easier to make the loom…

Pop in the plug-in, tape on the scrap plastic strips, glue the rods to the strips, let dry, remove the plug-in, do the weaving. Works so well I made two frames: I can weave on a completed loom while the other is drying.

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