Volume 5, Number 56
In this issue:
John Remai: Artist, Builder and Philanthropist
The CGS Annual Gourd Festival
Tutorial: Embossing Made Easy!
Notes From The Gourd Patch: Surveying The Bounty
Gourd Sightings and Trivia
Northern Dipper News
Hours of Operation
As of September 1 Northern Dipper will be open by appointment and chance only.
Hours will be between 10 am and 5 pm.
Please email at firstname.lastname@example.org
or call at 705/435-3307 to arrange a time.
Marshville Heritage Festival Sept 5th, 6th and 7th
Northern Dipper Booth: # A - 11
This festival is located in Wainfleet, Ontario and is one of the best shows out there. All juried vendors (over 100!) will
be dressed in period costumes and no manufactured product is allowed in.
There will be demos from many of the vendors including Northern Dipper, and there will be lots of entertainment, food and activities that will appeal to everyone in the family.
Northern Dipper will be selling finished gourd art and dried gourds but not finishing supplies. Hope to see you there!
For more information click here:
John set up a woodworking shop that is the envy of many Saskatoon hobbyists who think he has the best set up in the world. He is close to home, in his large garage, with every kind of equipment imaginable for his work.
John has designed and collected numerous plans for houses and feeders over the past couple of years. With his background he will find a design he likes and modify to suit his own needs.
This house has a bent wood top which makes it very different.
All of John's designs have been categorized from bird hotels to houses to condos.
Once the construction is complete, John's wife Sonya does the colour selection and then he completes the painting. Birdhouse conversations occur during the morning and afternoon when Sonya goes to John's shop to make coffee.
They catch up on the days events as well as discuss what to make next, what colour would work and so on.
John jokes that this is the best coffee in the city although they do hit the local coffee shops on their many trips to Home Depot to stock up on lumber, paint and other materials.
People who have received these large birdhouses have said that that birds are like people - they move in
at the top first and then fill up the lower levels.
There are many species of birds in Saskatchewan - purple martins, wrens, robins, finches, hummingbirds, swallows, black-birds and meadowlarks to name just a few of the more common.
John and Sonya live on the top
(24th) floor of a high-rise condominium and are entertained
by the antics of 2 falcons who
make their home just
outside their window!
That would be such a thrill to be neighbours with a family of falcons.
We love this roof with its large overhang.
Notes From The Gourd Patch
One of the most common questions we get at this time of year is when to harvest the gourds. In September the gourds are large and look mature but the reality is that they are still growing and ripening. It is still too early to be cutting the gourds from the vines.
Now, if you have not done this already, go through your gourd garden and turn all the gourds upright. For trellised gourds, if the gourds look heavy on the vine support the gourds using pantyhose.
The brown spots at the bottom of this gourd was caused by bugs.
Other than that there is not much to do. The bug population will naturally decrease at this time of year as reproduction has happened and powdery mildew may raise its ugly head if the fall proves to be wet.
Keep your garden clear of debris and other than that just sit back and admire what you have accomplished during the summer.
Next month we will discuss the most effective way of harvesting and drying your gourds to ensure that
you have success with your most cherished crop.
Tutorial: Embossing Powders Made Easy by Carolyn Cooper
Embossing powders are fast- melting powders that will deliver a rich colourful dimension to your gourd art. Northern Dipper has five beautiful colours to choose from.
- Embossing Powder
(I have used Cheetah Sheen
for this tutorial.)
- Palette heat activated glue
- Heat gun
(No, a hair dryer is not hot enough.)
- Fine paint brush
- Paper plate
- Sanding stick
- Clean, dry gourd
Trace or draw the design you would like to cover. Apply the Palette glue using a fine paint brush. Remember that a small amount of glue goes a long way.
For this design, which is about 2 x 3 inches, I used only three drops of glue which I squeezed out on a small piece of wax paper. Make sure all the required areas are covered. It is not necessary nor desired to have a thick coating of glue.
Next step will be to sprinkle the embossing powder over the area that you have just applied the glue to. I do this over cheap dollar store paper plates. This way it is easy for me to return the surplus powder back into its jar so I am not wasting any.
Using a popsicle stick or small measuring spoon sprinkle the powder over the glued area. Do not touch or pat down the powder. Shake off the excess onto the paper plate and return it to the jar.
The final step is to heat
the design of embossing powder with the heat gun. Gently wave the heat gun over the section and watch the powder quickly melt into a solid mass.
Let it cool for a few minutes
and you are done. If you notice any spots where you might have missed, wait till it cools, add a bit of glue to missed spots only and then repeat the above steps.
Any areas that need a slight clean-up I gently use the sanding stick which I find can get into small areas.
For more info on the embossing powders click here:
The Desert Botanical Garden
These pretty gourds were spotted at the Desert Botanical Garden in Phoenix, Arizona in the Gift Shop. This sighting was sent in by Antonella Grossi. Thank you Antonella!
Victoria, BC, V8R 2Z7
5376 County Rd 56
RR2, Cookstown, Ontario
L0L 1L0, Canada