MECO Show and Sale

MECO Show and Sale
2016 Show & Sale will be the Saturday 14th May 2016 held at the Peachland Community Centre in Peachland BC. contact person Barb Janes-Yeo at 250-757-2842

Sunday, 26 January 2014

Dance of the Fairies

Cottingley Fairies

Faeries, come take me out of this dull world,
For I would ride with you upon the wind,
Run on the top of the disheveled tide,
And dance upon the mountains like a flame.
~William Butler Yeats, "The Land of Heart's Desire," 1894

Recently here has been a real upsurge  in interest in fairies again, as there seems to be from time to time - whether this is linked to any worldly climate at the moment is unclear, but I am always happy to welcome whimsy where I find it. As a bonus,  I have found a treasure trove as of late of stores chock full  of sweet little terrariums,  usually stone with a small depression in the middle, plus tiny little plants, fairies, gnomes, furniture and accessories, all ready to build a small and idyllic fairy garden.  What this means to the miniaturist at the moment is suddenly there are walls of miniatures ready to be purchased! Keep an eye out on your local garden store, craft store, etc., because the trend probably won't last long, but while it lasts one can up their stash, at least for fairy-related goodies. Lately I have had my eye on a fairy garden kit - perhaps the next time I have a really good coupon i will build my rather shy friends a small grotto to call their own. Of course, buying a fairy garden is like buying the horse - the horse is the cheap part. It is the upkeep that gets you, wear and tear on glitter, toadstool damage, etc. It can be a trial sometimes.

Anyway .... Fairies are interesting. They come in all shapes and sizes, are sometimes malicious, sometimes helpful, and other times not a welcome sight due to what the particular fairy represents. If you find a fairy ring, you have found a marker to the village below. Don't go digging, because they tend to have tempers, whether they are benign or not.  If you don't particularly want a fairy to visit you, keep a sock under your bed. They don't say why this works - although there are those with such smelly feet the odor retained in their footwear could peel paint off a barn, so maybe that is it (although that would keep me away too, come to think of it). 

I tend to like fairies because they fall into the realm of "stuff I like" - unicorns, wizards, magic, dragons, etc.  I tend to have the more sweet romanticized dancing/singing/happy version rather than the kidnapping nasty little brutes that are the dark side of Fae.Of course, it seems that any time you have a nice image of something in your mind, some twit will wander over and tell you "the real story" and how your image of the mystical world is wrong. Maybe I will keep dirty socks around just to throw at *them*? Sounds good to me.

At any rate, today I made yet another captured fairy in a bottle (I know, kind of a dichotomy, I like them, but then I capture them. You would have to bring that up. Just for that....

There, that'll learn ya. 

 As you may or may not recall, I have made a fairy bottle before, albeit a smaller one. I felt the need to make a slightly bigger one this time, so I could add a little more detail.  I came across a rather nice "genie" bottle at the dollar store (or perhaps the dollar and a quarter store, as that was the actual price).

I guess it is technically a salad dressing bottle, or perhaps a wine decanter? It came with a lid and the price was right, whatever it was. Anyway, inspiration soon followed.

This time, instead of using a 3D fairy, I used a cut out. I have seen this done with the numerous "fairy in a bottle" tutorials, and thought it was a rather pretty way to go about it. I used an actual fairy illustration, but I have seen some very effective "vintage" photos used as well (wings were added to those, although apparently wings are a relatively recent addition to the idea of Fae, where they once moved about simply with magic).

To decorate the outside of the bottle this time, I bought some "modge-able" papers, and modgepodged" my little heart out. I did a double layer - the first layer had the printed side facing inwards, so it gives a little interest to the background of the bottle. The second, strangely enough,  had the printing facing outwards.  You don't have to use special papers, of course - any thin paper where the ink won't run will do (such as an old book that isn't of use any more - an out of date encyclopaedia, a second hand book with pages missing, etc. - would be sources, but not the only ones).

The bottle modgepodged. This was a learning experience, and one of the things I learned was I should have used smaller pieces of paper in order to go around the curves a little easier. On the other hand, the wrinkles do make it look a little more "vintage". I left mine white, but I have seen others "antique" with products presumably best found at a scrapbooking store.

I glued in a small amount of spanish moss, to give the fairy a woodland-ish base. This stuff tends to be nasty filthy to work with, but it does look attractive in the bottle.

The fairy, neatly cut out. I was going to leave all the drapings of the dress, but with the glitter process (ah, come on, you knew glitter was going to come into this discussion sooner or later) it kind of mucked the detail up a bit. To save her, I cut the diaphanous gown a little differently, and got an unexpected movement effect that I quite like, so it is all good.

The glittered fairy, plus the fringing I did on the dress. The glitter I used was glitter glue, which kept the mess down quite a bit, although without sealing the paper first you do run the risk of smudging if you aren't extremely careful and patient. The glue adds a little structure to the paper, which is good.

 The trick with the fairy in the bottle is to attach her to your background before you jam - I mean gently position - her into the jar. I used twigs as a base. We had a lovely windstorm a week or so back, and there was a lot of windfall of twigs and branches, which I collected. One of those few "free" things you can get, and no one really cares if you take the sticks away (because otherwise THEY have to pick them up). I tied the twigs at top and bottom first,  cut off the excess length (measured against the jar ) and then started gluing. I have used a number of silk flowers, plastic flowers, bridal floral picks, miniatures, nail art decorations, dried botanicals and paper butterflies to decorate out the scene. I got a little too festive however - remember if you use a small necked bottle, the stuff you put in through it has to FIT in the neck of the silly thing. Mine did, but only just, and by "just" I mean - I crammed that puppy in and then repositioned the bits with a knitting needle. Any port in a storm, or perhaps sherry - your choice.

The fairy in her new home, in the undoctored bottle.

Getting jiggy with lace and roses. I had that lace in my stash, which is a minor miracle in itself.

The bottle after I went after it with a glue gun, silk flowers, and sparkly floral picks. At the dollar store I found a nice set of earrings  that really worked nicely as a lid decoration.

A close up - Preeeeettty! Again, you could do just about anything with these - a mermaid in a bottle, for instance, or your favourite star, your kid, etc. You don't have to buy the bottle specially either - we are usually inundated with bottles that hold things like barbecue sauce, drinks, etc. Instead of tossing them/figuring out where they are supposed to be recycled etc., you could repurpose and use up bits of your stash that is a bit too big for miniatures in general. I thought this would make a wonderful able centerpiece for a certain themed wedding as well. As I said, romantic images, like the fairies, seem to be the "in" thing right now.

So, what else have I been up to? Well, as I mentioned, there are a lot of little fairy things to be found - I bought a couple, just because of the novelty of actually finding miniatures in a mainstream store...

I think he will work well for my mushroom house. I might modgepodge that as well. 

Don't blink! Okay, if you were a Whovian,  you would be ROFLAO right now. Cute little fairy though. They also had little fairy doors, cute little furniture, cute little houses, cute, cute, CUTE!!! OMG cute. Did I mention, cute? 

Little fairy garden marker. Just in case the fairies are confused, I suppose, as to just where they are at the moment. Like the flowers and plants aren't a dead giveaway....

Okay, a little more work done on my German Christmas village. I haven't worked on it for awhile, which is silly because I think the church is the only thing I have left to do before I start putting the market together. I still have two more towers and a few decorations to add, and I can get to the good stuff of "putting it all together".

On a final note, tonight I will leave you with the original fairy in a bottle tutorial I was working from today. It is about a half an hour long, but condensed quite nicely by the youtuber (youtubian?).  

Strike up the music, dance and sing happily, my friends, until we meet again!

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