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I'm a textile fanatic.  If it has to do with fiber, it's for me.  I love my almost fourteen year old son, cats and sheep.  I love historical costuming and most days you'll find me researching or reproducing clothing from any one of many time periods that have caught my fancy.

Saturday, February 23, 2013

A Pretty Place

I just finished up prettying up a couple of cookie tins.

I use a lot of boxes, tins, jars, etc. to organize and store notions, craft supplies and tools.  My boyfriend has a hard time distinguishing between these recyled/upcycled containers and junk that's just laying around and needs to be thrown away or recycled.  Sometimes these containers are empty, but sometimes they are already in use, which means that whatever is in them also gets thrown away.  A very expensive thing to have happen with any regularity.  It's also very inconvenient, since what usually gets tossed is what I'm currently using.  In order to help him tell the difference, I've started to decorate the containers in various ways; paint, scrapbook/wrapping paper, fabric, lace, trims, decoupage, silk flowers, various kinds of clay items.  These two are the latest.

For several years I've been perusing Godey's Ladies' Book and Magazine, Peterson's Magazine, Weldon's and various other 19th and early 20th Century publications.  They have a ton of designs and instructions for making different kinds of containers and embellishments.  These tins were inspired by some boxes shown in Godey's.  The exteriors were first covered with brown paper (from a torn grocery bag) that I had crumpled and then smoothed out.  After a couple of layers of Mod Podge, the paper begins to look like leather, you just have to tear the paper rather than cut it.

The next step was to make the flowers.  I used brown toilet paper rolls, I think I used three for both of the tins.  For the daisy type flower: I cut the rolls in rings (12 for the larger sized tin), then cut these rings into two pieces each, one shorter than the other.  Each set was glued together at the cut ends, and clipped together until the glue dried (This forms the double petals).  Three more rings were then cut in fourths and rolled into double layer circles.  I used another ring that was slightly wider, cut it open, and scallop one long edge (work narrow scallops at one end and increase the width of the scallops as you work to the other end.) Glue and roll this strip into a rose shape, curl the petals outward.  Glue this flower to the center of the lid, glue the circles to the lid and the flower center, evenly spaced.  Glue the double petals between the circles, clipping them together at the mid-point, weight the petals down until the glue dries.  When all this is done, Apply a couple of coats of Mod Podge and allow to dry completely.

For the Dahlia/Zinnia type flower:  I made a rose center (like the one for the daisy) and set it to the side.  I then cut out three layers of petals, the first with 5 rounded petals, the second with 6 slightly larger, slightly pointier petals, the third with 8 larger pointed oval petals.  I then applied one coat of Mod Podge to both sides of all the petals.  When this coat is nearly dry, I curl the petals.  When fully dry, glue the bottom (third) layer of the petals, fanning them out around the center of the lid, curling each down over the edge of the lid.  Glue second layer of petals in place, flattening them in the center so they will glue securely and curve upward then downward toward the points.  Glue the last layer in place, shaping petals in the same manner of the previous layer (but with a little more upward curve than the previous layer), overlapping petals as needed.  Glue the rose center in place.  Allow the glue to dry thoroughly, then apply a couple more coats of Mod Podge and allow to dry completely.

I braided some white cotton twine, for the trim around the bottom of the tin and lid, and just below the point where the lower edge of the lid meets on the tin.  I made the trim on the smaller tin as a five strand braid, and  nine strand on the larger.

When the braid was the right length I then wove the two edges together and trimmed the ends flush.

These were then glued in place.  


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