Accordion, Chip's Projects, Musical Life

Of Soap and Accordions

Whee! Christmas is just around the corner and I have to say that I’m loving crafting things.  While trying to come up with a special gift for someone you love can be a challenge, it can also be wonderful.  For some reason, it truly is more blessed to give than recieve.

Though it won’t cover everyone, I have been knitting away at dishcloths for the past month or two.  Even when you have a dishwasher, a dishcloth is something that comes in handy.  And you don’t have to just use it for dishes.  They make fine washcloths as well.

Though the dishcloth is nice, it occurred to me one day that maybe I should put soap with it.  There’s something about handcrafted soap that is just lovely and so much more precious than a storebought bar.  I’ve never made soap before, so I did what I always do when I need to know how to do something — made a trip to the library.  I discovered that there’s such a thing as ‘handmilling’ or ‘reprocessing’ soap.  It works best with tallow based soaps like Ivory. So yesterday I gave it a shot.  I made two batches, a milk and honey version, and a honey oatmeal version.

It wasn’t really difficult, and though it will take a week or two to dry, I’m quite pleased with the outcome.  You can see the honey oatmeal bars in the picture I took.

With a handcrafted label and a little raffia, I think they’ll look great with the knit dishcloths!

Today I am hoping to start the repairs on my little diatonic Hohner Club accordion. It’s the one in the very front of the picture.

I am certainly no repair expert, and this one is making me a little nervous. I have almost ruined an accordion before. The white one in the back needed bellows repairs at the beginning of 2008 and I’m afraid I got in over my head.  I ended up spending a good $600 on parts and a new bellows.

The Hohner is my newest addition to my collection, and I’ve had it for almost three weeks.  I’ve never played a diatonic before, and I must say I’ve gotten really fond of the little accordion.  So much so that it makes me really reluctant to try the repairs. But I can’t afford to have it repaired, and I can’t stand to leave it sounding so bad when I know it’s possibilities.  So repair it I will. But I am determined not to rush the process. If I get in a hurry, there’s more chance of ruining it than if I take it slow.

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