Shoebox: Decoupaged Birdhouse Gourds, Wedding Favors
Here are a few more grand crafting ideas from the Shoebox.
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The first letter from Gay Phillips of Delco, N.C., was accompanied by two very delightful "birdhouses" made from gourds. One was the perfect size for hummingbirds and the second, smaller one was designed for ladybugs. Of course, Gay is aware of the fact that hummingbirds and ladybugs don't live in gourds no matter how beautifully they may be decorated, but it's a touch of whimsy that folks appreciate. In any event, after preparing the gourds for use and after cutting the hole in the front for a door, she decorates them beautifully. Though I was sure they had been all hand-painted, the truth is that only the background was painted. The colorful flowers that grew around the entire circumference of the gourds were not painted but decoupaged. Gay cut them out so beautifully and buried them in so many layers of decoupage finish that you could not feel any cut edges at all. Gay said that folks frequently hang the gourds for outdoor decoration, though she recommends a shady spot to help prevent fading of the colors.
A tiny addition to Gay's package was a little pine cone petal painted by her (then) 16-year-old son Nickolas. It seems that while she was working with some pine cones last Christmas, Nickolas walked by the table and said that one looked like an elf ... so she told him to make one, and he did! He painted the tiny petal to look exactly like an elf should look. I'm guessing that he has done more since then because Gay added that they call them Nick's Nacks!
A very pretty idea for wedding table favors came from Violet Zimmerman, whose granddaughter was getting married and wanted table favors for all of the guests. Violet not only sent in one of the favors but a series of photographs showing various members of the family working on them.
Their first step was to buy a bunch of small papier-mache boxes shaped like trunks. Each one was first painted with two coats of white paint. Violet then took a photo of the young couple, and with the help of the computer, reduced it to the size of a postage stamp — and along with the photo printed out the date of the wedding. These were run through the Xyron to add a sticky back and they were adhered to the "trunks". After placing a couple of Hershey's Kisses in each box, it was wrapped in tulle and secured with a ribbon. A tiny rose was added. Just the one that Violet sent was pretty. I can imagine that many of them on a single table top looked lovely.