Saturday, August 15, 2009

Gourds 101

I mentioned the gourd workshop in a previous post, well today was the day of cleaning and prep work. I had no idea that just cleaning the gourds could be so much fun, of course the company I was in helped a lot too. The cleaning took place outside since gourds can be very "moldy" and really nasty looking at first sight, and you don't want that stuff in your house. I don't have a picture of the before and after, but believe me, these gourds were not a pretty sight. It didn't help that they had been soaking in water for a while too to make them easier to clean.

After donning masks and gloves we went to work scrubbing them, the outside that is, with metal pot scrubbers. You then scape of anything else bumpy or lumpy with metal scrapers until your gourd has a very nice smooth outer finish. Next we let them dry in the by now very warm Louisiana sunshine, while we took a break with coffee and artsy conversations in the shade of a beautiful magnolia tree.

Then we cut into the gourds. Here is were the creative part starts, because you have to decide how you want to cut your gourd. Do you want to "decapitate" it, or just remove a slice of it to get to the inside. What do you want your gourd to look like when it is finished? Here is my gourd, which I ended up laying on it's side since it didn't want to lose it's crooked neck and head.

Again we used the scrapers to clean the inside and finally drilled a series of holes around the opening. Now my gourd is resting on a towel to dry out completely and to wait for next weekends "dressing up" party.
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