Tag Archives: Lewis Mailbox decorations

Popeye

We changed our mailbox decoration this morning, taking down the Tazmanian Devil and putting up Popeye.

We really love to make these decorations. We choose the designs together. My husband changes the image into code that our CNC computer-guided torch can understand and follow, cutting out the design from various thicknesses of sheet metal. My husband makes the piece that attaches the decoration to the mailbox with two bolts. He welds it on and smooths out any rough edges.

We wipe down all sides of the front and back with PRE, a spray that removes any oil on the metal and allows the paint to stick better. We then attach the metal piece to a holder in the shop and use a transparency we made and an overhead projector to allow me to mark the bare metal with a magic marker front and back with the design as much as possible. I then paint both sides of the piece and the attachment piece. Finally, the piece is sprayed on both sides with clear protective polyurethane so deterioration will be slowed.

This piece is tall (about 3 feet), so we added a rod vertically to the back before I painted, to keep gusty wind from bending the piece. I try to paint it so that any rods and the attachment piece blend into the design on the back as much as I can.

In the background of this picture, you can see our 6 foot tall robot holding our address sign welcoming visitors, and one of the two owls we have on either side of the driveway. They sit on top of the gate poles. Everyone’s eyes glow as car lights hit them at night. Farther up the driveway is a flying pig hanging down, a guard dog with a rifle, and various other pieces at the top. :0)

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Taz

“The Tasmanian Devil, commonly referred to as Taz, is an animated cartoon character featured in the Warner Bros. Looney Tunesand Merrie Melodies series of cartoons. Though the character appeared in only five shorts before Warner Bros. Cartoons closed down in 1964, marketing and television appearances later propelled the character to new popularity in the 1990s. His first name is revealed in the 1957 short Bedeviled Rabbit, when his wife addresses him as “Claude”.” – Wikipedia

Taz is one of our favorite cartoon characters, so when we decided to try to create metal decorations to attach to our mailbox, he was one of the first we came up with.  We hope he makes others smile, too, as they pass our driveway.

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“I’m A-Warning You, Stranger!”

We just finished getting our mail and changing our mailbox decoration from “Catbert” from Dilbert to “Yosemite Sam.” He’s one of our favorite cartoon characters from growing up. I can hear his voice warning people off before he blasts them. :0)

This decoration is cut out of sheet metal with our computer-guided CNC set up. My husband converted a drawing we found on the net into the code needed to talk to the computer. The program then directs the torch to cut out the design. We clean up the metal edges, weld it onto the bar that attaches it to the mailbox, and then use the overhead projector and a transparency from our printer to mark the metal so that I can paint the design on both sides. We then spray the finished decoration with clear protective spray to make the paint last as long as possible.

“I’m a-warning you, Stranger!!!!”

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Catbert Wisdom

“Catbert is a fictional cat, and the “evil director of human resources” in the Dilbert comic strip. He was supposed to be a one-time character but resonated with readers so well that Adams brought him back as the HR director.”

 

This is the back of the metal mailbox decoration we made. You can see where I tried to blend the support pieces into the design when I painted it.

 

 

 

 

 

I hope that others who pass our driveway also love the sarcasm and wit of Scott Adams, and enjoy the mailbox decoration we made.

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Calvin and Hobbes Mailbox Decoration

I think this is my favorite of the many mailbox decorations we’ve made. It makes me feel good when I see it. This is the back of the piece. you can see where I’ve tried to incorporate the mounting bar into the design.

Calvin and Hobbes is a daily comic strip by American cartoonist Bill Watterson that was syndicated from November 18, 1985 to December 31, 1995.

 

This is the front. The piece is about 2-1/2 feet tall and about the same wide – 3 feet + with the mounting bar and tail. We grabbed the design from the net. My husband translated the picture into code that the computer-guided torch on our CNC table can understand and cut out. We used a transparency and overhead projector to mark the bare metal for painting. I then painted both sides and then sprayed a clear protective spray on it. I hope this decoration gives people a warm feeling as they drive by our home.

 

Calvin and Hobbes by Sarah, Quotesgram.com

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New Christmas Mailbox Decoration in the Works

 

 

We found this cute drawing on the net and decided to use our CNC setup in the shop to cut it out for a mailbox decoration next December.  My husband did his magic, generating the G-code the computer uses to guide the torch on the cutting table to cut out the design from a sheet of metal. The piece is about three feet wide and about 2-1/2 feet tall.

 

We used an overhead project and a color transparency to mark the piece. I’m starting to paint it now. I’m doing the back side of the piece first to work out any problems. The first code I call ‘color blocking’ because the first coat on metal is so awful that it only serves to mark the areas as particular colors. The second coat enables you to finally see the design well and then put accents on.

I did the first coat on the back side yesterday. Today I’ll try to do the second coat. I’ll take some progress pictures and post them.

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Latest Mailbox Decoration Progress

In December last year, we discovered that my husband and I shared a ‘senior moment,’ with both of us thinking we had created a new mailbox decoration for the Christmas season. We looked in the hanging bar where we keep all of our mailbox decorations, but it wasn’t there. We looked laboriously all over the shop, thinking maybe we had started it, but hadn’t finished it. Nope. Nada.

After finally admitting we were definitely losing it, we started over. My husband used the reference picture we got from the net and generated the computer code that tells the torch what to cut.

Yesterday afternoon he made the piece we use to attach the piece to the mailbox and got it welded to this. We attached the piece to our stand with a huge clamp, then used the overhead projector to mark the piece on both sides. It is now ready for me to paint.

I always start with the back, making decisions and working out any problems there before I turn it over and paint the front. I’ll post progress pics as the piece is painted.

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St. Pat’s Mailbox Decoration Up This Morning

When we first started making metal decorations to attach to our mailbox, we used to have to manually cut the designs out using a welding torch and then spend a LOT of time smoothing all the edges, front and back, before even thinking of painting it. It was the best we could do at the time and some decoration is certainly more fun than none.

When we got the CNC set up, where my husband could convert a drawing we found on the net to a code the computer could understand and replicate, cutting it out of sheet metal, we upped our game and a wonderful new adventure began! We have so much fun making these. We now have too many to display each year! We change our decoration twice a month, and then we try to display as many of the other designs we’ve made that are unrelated to a certain holiday as possible.

Now my husband looks for designs that allow us to display something 3-dimensional to take it out of the more ordinary designs. Such a fun way to spend time together – scheming on what to make, how we’re going to make it, cutting it out, marking it, and painting it – and then, finally putting it up on the mailbox, hoping that others will smile as they pass. :0)

Happy St. Patrick’s Day!

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Fritz the Cat Mailbox Decoration

Fritz the Cat is a comic strip created by Robert Crumb. Set in a “supercity” of anthropomorphic animals, the strip focuses on Fritz, a feline con artist who frequently goes on wild adventures that sometimes involve sexual escapades. Crumb began drawing this character in homemade comic books when he was a child. Fritz became one of his most famous characters, thanks largely to the motion picture adaptation by Ralph Bakshi. ~ Wikipedia.

Of course, this is one of my husband’s favorite comic book characters. This was a difficult piece to paint, since the picture from which we were working was all done in tiny dots. This is one of our larger pieces, and it is HEAVY.

The picture above is the back of the piece. I had quite a time trying to blend the vertical support into the design.

 

This is the front. It shows up pretty well down the road.

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Snow-Goon Mailbox Decoration

We love Calvin & Hobbes. One of our favorite parts of the series was the killer Snow-Goons. Today it’s 77 outside, but tonight a cold front is coming through, so we may get our chance to build one of our OWN Snow Goons before the winter is over. This is the back of the piece, where I try to blend in the attachment support into the design.

 

I love the way my husband was able to weld ‘arms’ on and make the piece 3-dimensional, with the Snow Goon holding its head.

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Slug

saga

I’ve been a slug today. I guess I wore myself out yesterday, feeling 110+ years old when I woke up today, joints creaking, muscles aching. We did errands, but that was it for the day. I had a nice nap under my throw in my recliner this afternoon.

One thing I forgot to tell you that I did yesterday was finish the repainting of the Jack-O-Lantern Pumpkin mailbox decoration for October.

I don’t think he’ll glow in the dark, but he’s the very brightest orange I could find, and I think he’ll light up well when headlights shine on him.

 

He looked okay on the mailbox last October, but I was hoping for a Day-Glo type look, if not glowing in the dark. I used a paint called, Neon Orange. The only actual glow-in-the-dark paint I could find was in a spray can, which I couldn’t use on the piece.

 

This is the front.

 

And this is the back. We hung him up on the proper hook in the shop, waiting for next October.

Next, I’ll be doing a refurbishing on our ‘box turtle’ who has an eye falling off and paint pealing off his ‘shell.’

We’re on the edge of the map as to whether we’ll get a wintry mix this evening into tomorrow morning. We’re thankful to have a warm, dry home with our animals close around us.

I hope you’ve had a happy day, too.

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Cupid

We put up Cupid with the Valentine on the mailbox yesterday. This is a closeup.

 

This is the back. You can see where I tried to blend the support hanger into the design.

 

This is the front. We hope people smile as they either drive past our driveway or come up and see us!

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Friday’s Projects – Thing One and Thing Two

THING ONE:

We’ll use our CNC table and computer set-up to cut out this metal design for the mailbox. It’ll be about 2 feet high and 2-1/2 feet or so wide. (My husband converted the image we found on the net to computer code.)  We’re doing this today because my husband wants to work on a part for the welding lathe he’s building. We have about half a sheet of metal on the table currently, so cutting out this design serves two purposes – a start to the mailbox decoration AND being able to clean off the table and put the really heavy metal for the welder part on it.

 

THING TWO:

Front Hall Closet Clean-out

This is a closet used for stashing. We hardly ever use it, otherwise, because people come into the house from the garage, rather than the front door. I’m going to change that, making it a closet where we can actually hang guests’ coats! (What a concept!) :0)

 

It’s embarrassing to post these pictures, but you already knew I was a slob. I hate housekeeping, second only to bookkeeping, taxes, and other legal stuff. I’m determined to go through my house, one area at a time, and take everything out, go through it to decide whether we want to keep it, donate it, or pitch it. If we’re keeping it, I’ll decide where it needs to live. A lot of this stuff should probably be elsewhere. I’ll clean the closet thoroughly and then reorganize what we’re keeping.

 

Here is a close up of the top of the closet.

 

And a close up of the bottom.

I don’t know how long this will take. I’ll put everything I take out onto our couch. That will give me the motivation to keep going until all of it has been sorted. I’ll post pics when the project is finished.

First, we enjoy our good friends at Lunch Bunch. We’ll do a few errands while we’re out. We’ll take care of animals when we get back, cut out the mailbox decoration, get the metal sheet remaining off the CNC table, and then I’ll begin.

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Happy New Year – 2018

We put up our “Happy New Year” mailbox decoration with Calvin & Hobbes today.  I’ve still had to ‘think’ a bit when writing a check to get 2017 on it. NOW – another year has whizzed past my head, making my hair blow!

 

“My Wish for you in 2018:

May peace break into your house and may thieves come to steal your debts.

May the pockets of your jeans become a magnet of $100 bills.

May love stick to your face like Vaseline and may laughter assault your lips!

May your clothes smell of success like smoking tires.

May happiness slap you across the face and may your tears be that of joy.

May the problems you had forget your home address! In simple words …….

May 2018 be the best year of your life!!!”  ~ Source Unknown

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Santa is UP

We put our Santa mailbox decoration up this morning. I’m not sure if you can tell it from this picture, but the white of his beard, the snowball and fur on his hat, his eyebrows, mustache, and bands on his mittens are all textured with SnoTex, so they have a 3-D feeling. I like that stuff a lot.

We have a mystery, though.

I asked my husband if he would get the mailbox decoration that has two children on either side of a Christmas tree so that we could put it up today. He came back, saying he couldn’t find that one, but had brought back Santa. I went out to the shop and looked through the decorations and I couldn’t find it, either!

I don’t know if I’m losing my mind or what! I can’t find any pictures of the decoration, so there seems to be no record of our making it. I’ll have to look on the net and see if I can find it again. Could I have DREAMED we cut it out and painted it?

Kind of rattles my confidence a bit…

 

 

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Thanksgiving Mailbox Decoration

We put the turkey up on the mailbox yesterday. I’m starting to get into the swing of Thanksgiving, finally.

We have our good friend, Nora, coming for dinner, and are hoping that another friend, Carla, will also be free. I have the fixings for our dinner in the house, and will move the turkey from the freezer to the fridge to start thawing on Monday.

I’m thankful for so many things this year –

  • My good friends from Lunch Bunch,
  • My husband playing ball with our ‘puppy,’ Amber, who now officially weighs 81 lbs at 8 months old, and keeping me company while I made two more 39 gallon trash bags full of leaf mulch this afternoon,
  • having a fun family of my husband, two dogs, two cats, and four fish up here in a house we love on top of a ridge line,
  • our son MAY be coming home from Thailand for a visit in February,
  • my husband and I are free to spend our days enjoying our lives and each other with very few serious problems

I hope that you’re looking forward to spending Thanksgiving with people you love in a warm, dry place, filling your bellies with good food, and your hearts with good cheer.

 

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Lewis Mailbox Decoration – First Half of November

This is the front of the Sylvester and Tweetie Pie mailbox decoration. My favorite thing about this one is that my husband was able to weld on whiskers for Sylvester and hair on Tweetie Pie without burning through the metal – a hard thing to do!

 

Here’s the back of the piece.

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Scarecrow Mailbox Decoration

This is the back of the scarecrow mailbox decoration. You can see where I tried to blend in the mounting hardware tube into his legs and the straw coming out of his jeans.

 

This is the front. This piece was fun to paint, trying to make his overalls look like denim.

He definitely makes it look as if fall has arrived, although we’re having two weeks of temps into the 90s in the afternoon with strong sun. They’re saying that by the end of next week, we could actually see some more reasonable fall-like temperatures. We’re really ready.

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Mailbox Decoration

Yesterday we changed our mailbox decoration on the way to Lunch Bunch. This is Wyle E. Coyote paying Sonic the Hedgehog to strangle the Roadrunner. This is the back of the piece. My husband is pleased with this one because we managed to add a bit of 3-dimenionsal quality to it with the legs welded onto the main piece.

 

Here’s the front of it.

The school bus goes by our driveway on week days. I hope that the kids get a kick out of seeing what we put on the mailbox.

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Steam Bath

It’s the chicken and the egg question – we’re not sure if WE brought back the hot weather by putting this up on the mailbox on the 15th, or if it would have come anyway. If it’s our fault for the 95 degree weather plus a heat index making it feel like 106, we apologize. It’s always hot in Arkansas in the summer, and particularly in August. This year has been so wonky, though, with the grass staying green all summer, rather than turning brown and crunchy, that we got spoiled. It’s like a steam bath out there now.  This is the back of the piece. I tried to blend the support bar into his feet.

 

Here’s the front.  We thought this decoration wouldn’t be appropriate in that we’ve had so much rain, but that won’t be a problem much longer.

 

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Wyle E. Coyote Mailbox Decoration

This is the back of the piece.

 

And this is the front. He’s about 2 feet tall.

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Snoopy and Woodstock Mailbox Decoration

We love Snoopy and Woodstock, and it makes me smile each time I see them getting ready to celebrate their patriotism.

 

The sun went behind a cloud when I took a picture of the front of the piece.

Happy Independence Day!

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Roadrunner on Mailbox

Wyle E. Coyote and the Roadrunner cartoons are some of our all-time favorites. The Roadrunner never runs out of energy, can run really fast and stop on a dime, and never lets poor Wyle win.

 

This is the back of the piece. Beep! Beep!

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Yosemite Sam Mailbox Decoration

On the way to town this morning, we put up Yosemite Sam, one of our favorite cartoon characters. This is the back of the piece.

 

This is the front. He makes us smile.

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Godzilla on Maibox

This is the back of the piece. You can see where I had to paint the bottom of the piece on the mounting bar.

 

Here’s the front. He doesn’t show up far down the road as some of our pieces do, but my husband is pleased with him. I’m relieved that he’s happy. We love Godzilla movies. They’re so awful! :0)

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Godzilla

We put Godzilla up on the mailbox yesterday, but I forgot to take my camera to take pics. We went to town three times yesterday, trying to get everything done we needed to before my husband had his second cataract surgery this morning.  Simply too busy.

This morning we were up at 5am in order to be at the hospital on time for the surgery. Needless to say, I was barely functional at that hour, and so didn’t remember to take the camera.

Maybe I’ll remember tomorrow. This was a difficult one to paint. My husband says its one of his favorites, so I’m happy he’s pleased with our efforts. :0)

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Sylvester and Tweetie Pie Mailbox Decoration

We took advantage of the drier weather today to change our mailbox decoration to Sylvester & Tweetie Pie. This is the back of the piece.

 

This is the front.  We’re satisfied with this piece because you can see what it is from fairly far down the road, and we did 3-dimensional whiskers on Sylvester and some hair on Tweetie Pie.

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Easter Rabbit Mailbox Decoration

This is the back of the Easter rabbit and egg mailbox decoration. I tried to blend the support bar into his feet.

 

This is the front. I used Snow-Tex on the tail to give it more texture.

The ladies who deliver the mail drove up the driveway yesterday, instead of leaving the mail in the mailbox because we got a package we had to sign for. My husband came in, grinning. He said the ladies both told him how much they enjoyed ‘our artwork.’

ClipArtKid

 

Happy Easter!

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St Patrick’s Day Mailbox Decoration

We put this up this morning to be ready for St. Patrick’s Day. We used to have just a bare shamrock piece cut out, but I like this one better This is the back of the piece. You can see where I tried to blend in the mounting bar into the painting.

 

And this is the front of the piece.

“St. Patrick’s Day is an enchanted time – a day to begin transforming winter’s dreams into summer’s magic.”  ~Adrienne Cook

 

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Pepe Le Pew and Penelope

pepelepewandpenelopeback

I loved the Pepe Le Pew cartoons, and particularly when his ‘girlfriend cat – Penelope’ was included. I still smile when I see them. This is the back of the mailbox decoration. I tried to blend the horizontal support bar into the figures.

 

pepelepewandpenelopefront

Here is the front of the piece. I hope people smile as they pass our driveway.

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“Mr. Natural” Mailbox Decoration

“Mr. Natural is a comic book character created and drawn by 1960s counterculture and underground comix artist Robert Crumb” ~ Wikipedia.

mrnatback

This is the back of the piece.

 

mrnatfront

And the front.

Mr. Natural was a “white-bearded, diminutive sage-cum-charlatan, ranging from charming, free-wheeling early ’70s stories to the disturbing, controversial stories of the 90s”. He’s one of my husband’s favorite characters due to his controversial nature, fitting my husband’s sense of humor to a “T.”

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