Sunday, October 12, 2014

Dreams of Mini Birdhouses

I woke up this morning thinking about mini-birdhouses. Of course, the fact that I had finished one last night, one of my most adventurous could have had something to do with it.

Next I created a new category on my Etsy store, a "mini" birdhouse category. That took about 5 tries. Etsy really has a problem. Finally, at least two of the mini's were put in that category even though 10 of them made it on my new Pinterest board.

Another motivation, probably in the back of my mind, was that I either sold two or three mini birdhouses at my gallery show. So, I decided they should be featured separately from the larger birdhouses. The dirty secret is that no matter what size a birdhouse is, the amount of work on them is about the same, the smaller ones maybe more because you are fighting smaller and tighter spaces. I started using them as test items and realized that they deserved their own original designs. They were fun to do and I have sold more than a few.

I had wanted to try crackle paint for awhile as well as the chalk paint I had. So, this birdhouse was painted a blood red. Once that was dry, then came the crackle layer. Heavens, I must have watched dozens of YouTube videos and each one had different advice. One English woman suggested using Elmer's glue, waiting until it got pretty tacky then covering that with the top layer of paint. She and many others used hot air guns but I decided to just let it take its course with the DecoArt Crackle Medium. The chalk paint didn't take long to dry and with crackling it created a wonderful base finish. Soft, smooth, just the right amount of crackle that wouldn't and didn't take away from the design on top.

Rosemaling is a very intricate and exacting format. I am an infant with the technique and as with all things practice makes perfect. Each time I achieve maybe one small breakthrough and it tickles my fancy. Craft is a form of fantasy, one that we willingly chose. If there is any shame in all this its that outside the craft community, with very rare exceptions, what we create is rarely appreciated. I can remember discussing this at the gallery show. Most viewers eyes glaze over. Yet, I would be that each and every one with hobbies of their own would do the same thing. We each have to choose our weapons accordingly.

Finally after the design was finalized, painted on and allowed to dry. I began to sand it, creating a shabby chic look that fit the crackled background perfectly. What do you think?

Please visit my craft store at and my fine art store at Thank you for stopping by and reading!

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