Friday, February 20, 2009

Sweet Nesting Time

Are you all ready to fire up your hot glue gun and make a little something pretty to make your heart sing for spring with me? I sure hope so!

First of all, I want to warn any of you Nester POOPIES to avert your eyes because I am about to encourage folks to walk on the wild side and use fake greenery and plastic eggs to make something for their homes that whispers 'spring'! So sorry! In case you don't know about this group of light hearted activists, POOPIE stands for: People Opposing Objectionable Pretend plants In the Environment. Quite the moniker! You can read all about it when you visit Nesting Place!

My inspiration for this project came in two steps. The first one was my Mum's delight at watching some early birds busy at their nest building on the front porch at Cracker Barrel as we waited on our table. She couldn't believe they were getting started in February! It reminded me of the first time I saw worms after a heavy March rain and the joy I felt at the coming of an early spring - something you would most definitely understand well if you were raised in the North. The second was a sweet arrangement that we saw under glass at Carlisle Gifts in Plain City last weekend. It was in a substantial cement bowl, and was quite lovely but also carried a substantial $70 price tag! I decided to copy it.

The wood section of our Goodwill is usually the best place to find odd lazy susan's or chunky wooden salad bowls which I thought would work well for this project, but for some reason it was a disappointment when I searched there on Monday night. No worries. I went to the dishes area and found these huge deep plates that were $.89 and worked just fine. I am still looking for another base to house my Mum's arrangement - but I have enough cloches for three.

Sweet Nesting Time

For those of us who don't object to a wee bit of tasteful fakery around the house, it's time to assemble the cast of characters.
  1. hot glue gun & glue sticks
  2. a small block of green foam
  3. sheet moss
  4. a plate, bowl, platter or painted wooden disk - shop the house for this
  5. a cloche - again shop the house
  6. assortment of nice fake greenery - fine and well textured
  7. some petite flowers - natural looking
  8. sticks - fine branches
  9. a wee birdy, nest and eggs
  10. paint and brushes or paper towel if you need it

That's it! My cloches are really just broken lamp parts bought at our Habitat for Humanity for $1 that I glued painted wooden bed knob finials to. They are a bit curvaceous but they worked out ok for this project.

Don't be alarmed - I didn't use 1/100 of this greenery, but I just wanted to have a nice variety so I laid it all out to 'see'! You can use what you have on hand or steal a smidgen from another arrangement you have in the house!

I used a bunch of paint colors in the end to match the yellowy moss color of my plates - my finials were black, but I wanted to soften them and blend them with the plate and greenery colors.

I do love my reindeer moss! Have you got everything together now? Good!

Step One: Cut the foam block to an appropriate size for your cloche and base. Round the edges with a knife and spread on some hot glue. Cover the foam with a nice chunk of sheet moss. Fill in any holes and don't burn your fingers - please!

Step Two: Place a few pretty twigs in the middle of your foam and 'test fit' the cloche. If they are too tall, trim the bottoms. They will be your guide for the rest of the greenery. Start placing small clumps of greenery from the center out, leaving a wee space in front for the sweet little nest. Add some more twigs and even a feather if that's what makes your heart sing. Some tiny berries or simple flowers in a natural hue would also be a sweet addition. Keep it in scale and airy.

Step Three: Glue your nest and eggs in place and find a perfect perch for your sweet momma bird to light. Add little bits of leaves and twigs for balance, but don't throw the kitchen sink in here - it's meant to be sweet, simple and light.

Step Four: If you're planning to paint your finial (if your cloche has one) this would be a fine time. It took a number of color trial and errors to get the look I wanted - I just kept dabbing with paper towel until I was pleased with the slightly distressed look.

Step Five: Put it all together and give it a place of honor! It's a wee bit tricky to get all the greenery in when you have such a curvaceous cloche, but it worked out just fine! I made three of these in about an hour - two for our mantle and one for my mum! Total cost for three: $12

I hope you like this quick a simple spring project! I would love to hear from you if you plan to make one too! We are expecting snow tomorrow, but spring is just around the corner!

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  1. How beautiful!!! Thank you for leaving a comment on my blog... I've really enjoyed reading yours, too!


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