January 26, 2012

Raven Cages and Valentine Vignettes

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Once upon a midnight dreary, while I pondered weak and weary . . .


Yes, I know it's not October.
The fact is, Sunday, January 28 marks the 167 anniversary of the publication of "The Raven," and that reminded me of a craft project I did a few years ago.
I came across the idea on Bungalow.
Basically, it's a homemade wire cloche, fashioned from chicken wire and bits and pieces of left over crafting junk.

This project was originally intended as a Halloween decoration, but as all cloche lovers know, it can be used throughout the year by simply changing it's contents and surrounding adornments.



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In addition to a couple of feet of chicken wire,
all you'll need is a little spray paint,
something for the top notch,
a wire cutter, needle nose pliers,
and the time.





If you make this, wear protective eye gear.
Let me say that one more time.
WEAR PROTECTIVE EYE GEAR!












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I own two glass cloches, but there are times when only this wire cloche will do.
The valentine dessert dish inside the cloche is really a tad too wide for either of my glass cloches. The sides of the wire cloche are very forgiving and the plate slips inside nicely.

It makes a great patio cloche too. The wire gives it an outdoorsy feel, and there's no fear of breakage.

Best of all, if you need to tweak the items inside the cloche, you can use a skewer or tweezers to help arrange things.









After forming the chicken wire into a tube, make vertical cuts all around the top. Fold the wire strips over onto each other.
Trim the excess wire a little at a time.
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A couple of balls will help to
form a smooth dome.ball foundation



This is a much easier than it might appear.
The biggest problem is that it's tedious. Snipping and crimping, snipping and crimping. Proceed slowly.

A drawer pull was originally used at the top. A paper mache ball, painted the appropriate holiday colors, slips over the drawer pull when needed.
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Once upon a midday chilly, while I wandered willy-nilly,
Through many a quaint and curious forum, devoted to forgotten crafts,
While I nodded, nearly dozing, there flashed on screen, quite imposing,
As though the spirits were proposing, this project with its various drafts.
“Tis very clever,“ I muttered. “But there’s no steps, no helpful graphs -
Still, I'll try it, just for laughs.”


(Edgar, eat your heart out.)

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I am linking to:
Between Naps on the Porch for Tablescape Thursday.


January 23, 2012

Happy Chinese New Year!

It's the Year of the Dragon.

My granddaughters love Chinese food, so it seems that I have no choice but to set a special table for them today.

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First, the banner:

I made this banner about a hundred years ago, back when I was teaching second grade.

The dragon image was taken from a resource book for primary teachers.

It hangs on bamboo sticks from the local nursery.
I went to the nursery to purchase some Lucky Bamboo, but found it to be too expensive, and ended up with bamboo garden sticks instead.





This tablescape was done "on the quick" this morning.
All the little items were purchased at Party City.
The store opens at 9:30 a.m. I was there at 9:20 a.m.
If the store didn't have it, it didn't make it onto my table.


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A dragon, made from an individual cereal box and colored craft foam sheets,
uses his egg carton eyes to peek out from under some greenery in the center of the table.
Next year, when I have more time, I'll give him a body.

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This photo, taken from the opposite direction,
gives a bit better view of the hanging lantern centerpiece that's modeled after a tutorial found on My Wise Wife.















A gold charger, red dinner plate, black fruit bowl, red money envelope, and chopsticks
are all layered atop a red placemat.
Mini takeout boxes hold three fortune cookies. (You know one cookie is NEVER really enough.)
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Happy New Year, Everyone.
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Oh, I forgot the napkins!
See. I told you I was in a hurry.


Placemats: Target
Table runner: Kohl's
Gold chargers: no information, old and cheap
Dinner plate: Red Coupe, Crate and Barrel
Soup/Salad bowl: no markings, yard sale
Black stemmed glasses: no information, Pasadena Flea Market
Chopsticks, paper lanterns, red money envelopes, mini takeout cartons: Party City

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