Little Bird Trinket Boxes

Today’s post is a perhaps confused rambling on about a craft project–making little bird trinket boxes–written while under the effects of spring delirium. I’ve just been wandering in the garden, thrilling over every little perfect shoot emerging, at the emerald green of the thyme, of the tiny, fresh leaves on the pear tree, and the jeweled perfection of a small crowd of blooming iris . . .  So if I sound distracted, I’ll blame it on spring!

I’ve been thinking a lot about birds lately, and how, when I was young, I never really noticed how miraculous they are. I took for granted that they levitate, look like flawless jewels, can migrate thousands of miles using invisible roads, sing music as though from heaven, grace us with the soft sound of their wings, build astonishing  nests, perhaps using the Milky Way galaxy as their model, bring us the joy of their nestlings, and connect us, sad earthbound creatures that we are, to the sky.  So I’ve been thinking about them.

And on a more mundane level, when I was in a craft store the other day, and ran across a packet of bird and butterfly “rub-ons,” I purchased them and some paper maché boxes, and made little bird trinket boxes. If you’ve never used “rub-ons,” they are a bit like decals, only better. They come in a sheet (from The Paper Studio, for $2.99), and you cut out your motif and rub it onto your painted wood or paper maché box, using a plastic coin. You may have to search for the rub-ons  among the scrapbooking supplies.

Supplies: small, paper maché boxes (should cost about $1.00), cream-colored acrylic paint, acrylic sealer, and rub-ons.

How to: Paint the box and lid with the sealer. This will help the colored paint go on more smoothly. When the sealer is dry, paint with two or three thin coats of the cream-colored acrylic paint. Allow to dry thoroughly. Cut out the desired motif, and experiment with how you want it positioned on the lid. Use the plastic “coin” to rub the motif on to the painted lid. You can lightly sand the edges of the lid, to look a bit worn.

I also cut out some motifs from a paper lace doily and glued them to each trinket box. This was fun, but not obligatory.

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