Butterfly with Onion Skin Wings, Mixed-Media Shadow Box

This piece started with several layers: cardboard, parchment paper, burlap garland, muslin, and inked kraft paper.

Then I made a chrysalis from poly-fil wrapped in ivory embroidery thread.

I attached the chrysalis to a painted grape stem.  Ya’ll know I have a thing for grape stems.

A double-layer of burlap garland was also added to the center for more texture.

Then I did something I’ve been wanting to do for a while now.  I made a butterfly with onion skin wings.

I folded the butterfly in half…

White paper flowers were brushed with ‘Tea Dye’ distressing ink and glued onto branches here and there.

Scrabble tiles were the perfect color for the word ‘FLY’~ I rolled out some paper clay in a thin layer to create a contrasting background for the tiles. I like the way all of these different materials play off one another.



Thanks for stopping by and looking at this project!

You can also find it listed in my Etsy shop, where all proceeds go toward finding a cure for Cockayne Syndrome.

Hope you’re having a wonderful Sunday!

More Mini Canvases with Fiber Paste and Paper Clay

Just like my last mini canvases I covered these with fiber paste.  This time I also sprinkled them with sparkly fine glitter while they were still wet and set painted dried grape stems on top.

My kids are so funny! Every time they finish up a bunch of grapes they smile big and ask, “You want these stems, Mom?”

Of course I do!

I also swirled a spot of blue paint, and I mean a tiny spot, into the wet paste to give it the softest hint of blue.

Then I sculpted a little blue bird from paper clay and painted it the same soft blue when it was dry.   Then I glued it on so that it looks as if it’s perched on a snowy branch…

I added on words cut from book text and brushed some of the paste over the edges.

Here’s a winged heart about to take off in flight (or that’s the look I was going for anyway).



Thank you so much for visiting my blog.  Creating things is a much needed outlet for me right now, but it’s even more enjoyable when people come to visit!

Up next…my daughter finally talked me into creating a Valentine’s tree.  More to come!

“Cardinals in the Snow” Gift Jars

I’ve been using our left-over grape stems in a lot of projects lately.  They make perfect little trees!

Here’s one project I finished recently that I thought would make nice Christmas gifts.

First, eat up all your grapes and trim the stem into a nice tree shape…

Next, wrap brown floral tape around the bottom of the stem to form the ‘trunk” and give it added support. You can also combine several smaller stems to create one tree by doing this.

A section from an egg carton serves as the perfect tree stand.

Mix some 1 part white acrylic paint to 1 part light molding paste. This makes a thick “snow” paint.  Using a small brush, coat your little tree with frosty paint, letting blobs form in the creases and places where branches separate. I painted the egg carton stand, too.

These look just like the live oaks we have down here in the South.    I added glitter to this one, too.

For the cardinal, I took Paper Clay and shaped some birds by hand and then painted them red. You could also use some tiny resin cardinals, I’ve seen them in the craft stores.


When the tree is dry, glue the cardinal onto a branch and then slip it gently into a quart jar.

I’ve tried everything for snow: poly-flake, salt, flour, icing, sugar..My favorite ‘snow’ is confectioner’s sugar.

For this jar I also made a sturdy hanger with white floral stem wires…

After you put the lid on and secure it tightly, you can wrap up the top any way you like.  It’s fun to come up with different ideas.

I wrapped a torn strip of burlap garland and added a stamped tag with a red feather.


On another one I tied a strip of white organdy around the jar.  For the accents I used a tiny piece of grape stem that had fallen off, some red berries, and  tag hand-stamped with the word ‘peace’.

For the third jar, I did something a little funky. I wrapped wide strips of muslin and burlap garland around the top.

I cut a tag from a Valentine’s doily, added a dried tendril from the grapes, and a red feather, all held together with a tiny clothespin.

There are so many fun ways you could finish these off.   It’s fun to make each gift unique.

I hope I’ve inspired you to make home-made gifts this year!

And to eat more grapes.  :)