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Mixed Media Shadowbox

Jacqueline Myers-Cho creates this "dress-up" themed mixed-media shadow box.

Thanks to Jacqueline Myers-Cho, Eden Prairie, Minnesota.

Materials and Tools:

6" x 6" wood
wood for frame
acrylic paints
rubber stamps
rice paper
gel medium
green glaze
polymer clay
metallic gold paint
card stock
thin permanent marker
light switchplate
Contact paper transfers
2" x 2" and 1" x 1" squares copper sheet
wire cutters
3" and 10" strips of bamboo
3d nails
nail hanger


1. Cut wood to 6" x 6," sand edges, and paint with gesso. Let it dry. Paint the board blue and then wipe it off with a rag.

2. Carve your own stamp or use a purchased design that you like. Using a paintbrush, spread a thin layer of gesso on a flat surface. "Ink" up your stamp with the gesso and print onto your fabric. Continue doing this until the borders are covered. Let it dry.

3. To attach the fabric to the board: Glue the fabric to the board, using the gel medium. When it is dry, glaze it with green and dab off extra paint. Paint on a little blue in the center and dab off extra.

4. To make the face and shoe: Condition polymer clay and roll into a ball. Make the face by pushing the clay around with your fingers, or a mold can be used if that feels more comfortable. Set it aside.

5. Roll out a 3" x 1-3/4" rectangle, about 1/4-inch thick. Cut out your show shape. With a flower stamp, press gently into the polymer shoe to create texture. Roll out a 2-inch snake to make the bow. Form bow and attach to the shoe.

6. Bake in the oven following the manufacturer's instructions. Let it cool and paint it with gesso.

7. When dry, paint lips red and shoe black. When dry, glaze them with the metallic gold paint.

8. Draw/trace a dress onto your card stock, and outline it with thin permanent marker. With the gel medium, glue it down onto the plate. Cover the top with gel to create texture and let it dry.

9. When dry, paint the dress red and stamp flowers with the pink gesso around perimeter of the dress. When that layer dries, glue down contact paper transfers and let it dry.

The final step is to dry brush on the gold and the green wood color.

10. Cut a 2"x2" and a 1"x1" square from the copper sheet. Draw and score onto them to create designs and patterns. Fold all the edges on the small square.

11. Cut the large square on the diagonal; you will have a triangle. These corners will be used for the corners of the board. Cut the triangle in 1/4 inch of the middle angle and fold over the two short edges.

12. With wire cutters, cut 3- and 10-inch pieces of bamboo. Paint the 10-inch piece green. Wrap a copper strip around the 3-inch piece.

13. Glue the corner copper pieces, the dress plate, the head, and the copper square on the board.

14. Cut your frame pieces and sand. Paint all pieces. Nail on the 6-inch side pieces first, using the 3d nails. Nail on the bottom 6-1/2-inch piece and then the top. The top piece will have a 1-inch over hang on both sides. Nail the hanger on the back.

15. To complete the assemblage, glue down the shoe, small piece of bamboo, and the long piece to the roof.

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