Monday, November 6, 2017
Altered Potion Bottles
I'm obsessed with altered bottles. I blame the Russians. I got sucked in by their pinterest Postila.ru which led me to Stranamasterov.ru According to Google Translate it is: Country of Masters - a site about applied creativity for children and adults: crafts from various materials with their own hands, master classes, competitions.
The variations of bottles is endless and I want to make all the bottles with everything. As I mentioned in my craft party post you can use anything to decorate these bottles, the hardest part is choosing what. Before the party my daughter and I each created a bottle using different items and techniques to use as examples.
The bottle above is my daughters creation. She worked too fast for me to get before and after pictures. She started with a layer of Mod Podge and tissue paper. Our city recycling program can't accept tissue paper, so I always save it for projects like this. She chose to hot glue her items on. She used twine, beaded garland, and broken jewelry; bit of chain, charms and links. There are faux pearls, some wavy bits that are pieces of shell and of course smaller whole shells. There is a bit of mesh packing paper, which has some neat texture. She used fabrics and even some vinyl from a repair kit which also had some interesting textures. Most items where attached before painting, but you can see some were added after for a pop of color.
I had seen bottles like this using dried plants and was curious to see how that would actually work. I also wasn't sure what medium they were using to set the plants into. After reading through a few translated how-to's I decided to go with a mixture of Elmer's white glue and spackle. I added a little glue at a time until the spackle was the consistency I wanted.
First I started with a layer of Mod Podged tissue paper to give the spackle mixture a better surface to cling to. After the tissue paper was dry I added a rough layer of the spackle gunk with a tongue depressor and started pressing things into it. I used twine, dried ornamental grass, wood beads and the seeds my hamster doesn't like from her treat mix. Towards the end I stuck on a glass gem with a skull picture from the previous craft party to try and show how those could be incorporated too. It doesn't really work here, and looks every bit the last minute add-on that it is, but it's still a valid idea. Next time I would make the gem the focal and work the design around that. I would also build up the medium more around the gem.
I love how a sloppy application of spackle adds interest to the surface of the bottle. Being able to set things into it makes them part of the bottle as opposed to merely laying on top. The downside is the longer drying time. I let my dry overnight before painting. Gluing items worked better for the craft party, but if you have the time, the spackle method is certainly rewarding.