Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Brooch Bouquet Update

Wedding crafts

Perhaps you wonder what I've been doing with my spare time lately. Well, I've been mastering the creation of metal daisies.

Here's a photo of some of the 50-or-so metal flowers I've made. Keely's wedding colors are sage green and chocolate brown, so I made my flowers as close as I thought I could to those colors.

The daisies are made from aluminum flashing. Each has two layers of petals and a fancy button at the center.

The tall sprays are made from some tiny brooches I bought on eBay.  I popped the pins off their backs and wired them to stems in groups of three.

And the two little flowers with orange centers and turquoise-beaded edges are buttons.

These will supplement the brooches in the bouquets for Keely's wedding (a smaller brooch bouquet for the maid of honor and a larger one for the bride.)

Last week, Keely wired (attached stems to) the brooches and assembled the smaller bouquet. She said she learned some things while doing it that will be helpful when she makes the larger bouquet. As you can see, the homemade flowers do help fill in the gaps.

I think Keely said that she might still attach some leaves. The stems will be wrapped with ribbon.

These photos don't really do it justice -- the flash was too harsh. It's very pretty. I was really amazed and happy that it looks so good. We're going to make the bride's bouquet this weekend.

I still have to make a few more flowers for the decorations. I will probably post a tutorial later about how to put them together, as I think my method is a big improvement over the instructions I started with. I'll also try to do a tutorial about how Keely wired the brooches and put the bouquet together.

Don't hold your breath, though. The tutorials aren't likely to appear until well after the wedding!

Frolics, Larks, and Capers

Wednesday, September 08, 2010

Eggner Ferry Bridge Repairs

In its final years

Eggner Ferry Bridge
Workmen were repairing one of the approaches to Eggner Ferry Bridge the last time I crossed Kentucky Lake. I found myself sitting on top of the bridge with twenty other cars, waiting to snake through the work zone. While I was parked in that unusual place, I took these photos of the bridge suspension from my car window.

Eggner Ferry Bridge is named for the Eggner Ferry that crossed the Tennessee River at that location for many years. The ferry ceased operation when this bridge was built across the river in 1932. In the early 1940s, the bridge was raised and extended before the Tennessee river was dammed* and Kentucky Lake was formed.

Eggner Ferry Bridge
We are now in 2010, and the Eggner River Bridge is far too narrow for the volume of traffic it sees.   A new 4-lane bridge is supposed to be completed by 2017. Highway 68/80 through Land Between the Lakes (LBL) is being made 4-lane, and a 4-lane bridge will be built over Lake Barkley on the east side of LBL.

In the meantime, the existing bridges must be repaired as necessary to keep them safe. These last few years are going to be especially rough on them because of all the heavy trucks bringing materials for the road and bridge construction.

I got these photos ready to post a couple of weeks ago, and now I see that I misspelled "Eggner" when I labeled them. They will have to stay that way for now. I've been having computer problems, and with the setup I'm using currently, I don't have much for photo-editing software to correct my error.  Like the bridges, my computers need some repair, maintenance, and eventual replacement!


* Kentucky Dam on the Tennessee River and Barkley Dam on the Cumberland River are just two of many dams that were built by the Tennessee Valley Authority (TVA) during the 1930s and 1940s.

When Kentucky Dam and Barkley Dam were built, hundreds of families were relocated from the Tennessee River valley, the Cumberland River valley, and the Land Between the Rivers near the Kentucky/Tennessee border and northward. Hundreds of homes and buildings were torn down. Cemeteries were moved to high ground. The "Land Between The Rivers" became the "Land Between The Lakes" under TVA control. Much of the two lakes' outer shore lines was put under state control.

Old Bridges at Land Between the Lakes, KY
A Very Windy Day!

Kentucky Lake seen from Eggner Ferry Bridge
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CONTENTMENT: Keep your heart free from hate, your mind from worry, live simply, expect little, give much, sing often, pray always, forget self, think of others and their feelings, fill your heart with love, scatter sunshine. These are the tried links in the golden chain of contentment.
(Author unknown)

IT IS STILL BEST to be honest and truthful; to make the most of what we have; to be happy with simple pleasure; and to be cheerful and have courage when things go wrong.
(Laura Ingalls Wilder, 1867-1957)

Thanks for reading.