Countdown to Easter: Eggsbox, but no games

Making a mountain out of mini eggs

Easter eggs are not just for kids, or at least not as far as I am concerned. I like to gift a few mini eggs to friends and family too. But handing over a rather dull net of chocolate is, well, a bit humdrum, so usually I try to gussie them up a bit.

In previous years I have made little ‘shopping bags’ and folded pouches but I thought it was time to try something different. This presentation is not 100% successful. It is a bit wobbly and needs to go into a flat bottom cello bag for transportation (as in to the recipient, not to a penal colony). Also I am not wild about the foil wrapping on the eggs. It is a bit busy for my tastes but that is how they come. The hard candy shell eggs would have been better visually, but obviously hygiene prohibits the use of unwrapped items. I don’t think anyone would like a mouthful of glitter along with their chocolate. Or indeed a little bit of Riley now that we are in moulting season!

Still, the idea is ok, I think. I just made a quick box base from double sided gingham card and added a layer of with shredded paper. Shakespeare, in case the recipient should also fancy a jigsaw puzzle and some light reading. The outside is covered with multiple cuts of a picket fence die that was free with issue 144 of Papercraft Essentials magazine. Good free stuff!! Then I filled the box with some polystyrene eggs (from The Works) that had been covered in Martha Stewart glitter, one of my sadly deformed chicks and as many mini eggs as seemed feasible. Think of loading to the max a salad bowl, or a skip, whichever you can best identify with.

The final touch is a banner made with Clearly Besotted Mini Banners stamps and die. I cut the shape twice – once around the stamped image and once from plain gingham cardstock. I used red liner tape to fix an couple of cocktail sticks to the back of the stamped image and then 3D foam to cover the workings with the second die cut. A couple of Lawn Fawn Hoppy Easter eggs were hanging around so they got used too.

eggsbox1eggsbox3eggsbox2eggsbox4

Having stared at chocolate so much I am now off to eat some!

 

 

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Countdown to Easter: bunnies, Martha Stewart and Chopin

No, this is not one of those ‘if you could invite anyone from history to a dinner party’ conversations. Last week, on a whim, I bought a bag of polystyrene bunnies from The Works. At £1 for six little hoppers (well three large, three small, actually) it seemed rude not to.

I have a thing about 3D objects covered in glitter. It has to be good glitter though, so the colour is important – not ‘unwell urine yellow’ masquerading as gold. Years ago I bought a set of Martha Stewart glitters. Actually I liked them so much I then bought a second set in case they were discontinued or there was a worldwide glitter shortage. Luckily glitter hoarding is not a crime. I still have two practically full packs because a little goes a long way, but they are the BEST colours so I regret nothing. No wait, I regret shoulder pads…

I also have a thing for book pages or sheet music used in decorative items. So, a perfect opportunity to indulge both. It is healthier than chocolate. Amazingly I have never been tempted to lick glitter. Or sheet music.

So, to bunny number one. I decided to cover him in torn strips of the sheet music. I actually don’t think I have ever done this before with a complicated shape, but I had 6 bunnies to play with and plenty more in the shop if it went wrong. I mixed pva glue and water in approximately the usual 2:1 ratio and added some mica powder to colour it. I partly spread glue thinly on the bunny, partly doused the sheet music strips and just covered him as best I could, working the paper in to the creases with a firm brush. For sections like the side of his face and ears I found it easier to then tear another piece approximately the right shape and glue it over the top. He was set aside to dry a bit, then given another coat of the pva/mica for an extra glossy finish.

Bunny number two was glitter time! Again I have never covered a polystyrene shape like this before. I actually used the same tub of pva and mica because I had mixed up far too much. I thought the colour might taint the glitter a bit but there was no problem. The only difficulty was choosing what glitter to use, but eventually I plumped for Kunzite, a lovely dusty pink. If you have never covered shapes like this, just use a really, really thin layer of glue. You can always touch up any bald patches afterwards but if you put too much on you end up with dripping or sliding glue, and your bunny will have wrinkles prematurely. Might end up looking more like an Easter rhino or one of those pop-up ads for miracle face creams.

Now, I kind of wanted to add a bit more decoration to my bunny couple, but I am also of a ‘less is more’ tendency, so minimal accessorising was preferred. I made a tiny little crown/tiara thingie for Rosa, which of course elevated her status to Princess, and in the end just a simple bow for Mr Noteworthy. A woman should never be upstaged by her consort.

noteworthy and rosa

 

See the angry clown?

Again I am a bit short of time today. Hardly an unusual situation for most of us, I know. Lunch out, a spot of gardening and then back to the (paper) mill. Apparently there is some ironing to be done, but I just can’t seem to see it…ah well, later, maybe.

So, continuing to road test my new Altenew Painted Flowers stamps, I chose a smaller flower this time, with no ‘integral’ leaf (although you can still add some if you want). In a rare moment of foresight I had realised that if I used the same flower as yesterday, I could not make a random background in the way I usually would, and a little more thought and positioning would be required. Well, today is not the day for that (but maybe tomorrow)! I just wanna make somethin’ pretty, pretty darn quick.

I used Altenew Coral Berry and Frosty Pink inks, plus Jet Black (from, rather randomly, their green set of colours!)

The black card I used is not quite the gsm/lb weight I would like, so I also made a card mat for the back of the inside to reinforce it a bit. And stamped a happy flower on it for good measure. A Spellbinders Ribbon Tag die, Poppystamps Hip Hello die, silver glitter card and a spotty ribbon that I have had since for ever to complete it.

As for the angry clown, after I had finished stamping my background and removed the paper underneath, well, this is what I was confronted with…

angry clown

Tell me it’s not just me that sees it?!

Remember yesterday?

Today I set about making the card I intended to make yesterday, before I had rudely interrupted myself and gone ‘off piste’. Or ‘off poste’, maybe?! So if you saw yesterday’s effort, you know it is Altenew roses, pink, vellum and silver. I can’t surprise you. Except that the silver was meant to be for leaves, not the base card. I also had in mind to use wood grain embossed effect again, make some kind of tag and hope for a happy outcome.

Then I got an attack of that well-known crafting complain the Dilemmas. Emboss both the tag and background or just one, and if so, which? I die cut lots of silver leaf sprigs. Use lots? One? None, in the end. I was going to have two different strips of texture and pattern across the bottom of the tag and ended up with one. I was going to heat emboss all the edges of the tag and then decided to leave the bottom plain. Not sure why, but I am glad I did.

Finally I get to the assembly stage and the Dilemmas still have a hold of me. I cannot decide on the base card. White wood grain or linen effect silver?

I’m still not sure which I like better. Anyone got a preference? Also, TWO cards! Just thought I’d mention it….