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Creative Casey's Blog

Friday, July 26, 2013

Altered Book Birdhouse

This project is all about opening yourself up to connections and the wonderful people you can meet by being present and authentic. If you haven't viewed my last post titled "Serendipity" then you should as that too is all about the amazing coincidences that can occur at any moment in your life.

While at The Brainery for the Altered Book workshop I took almost a month ago I sat next to this woman Linda and throughout the workshop we began talking about art and places we like to visit to pick up art supplies or find inspiration. She told me about these wooden birdhouses she and her husband make out of the old childrens "Golden Books". This resonated with me because my mom still has a large basket of all of my sister and my Golden Books from when we were children.  It brought a flashback to my "teacher" days- that is when I pretended to be a teacher and my dolls and stuffed animals were my students.  By the time the workshop was done Linda and I had exchanged information and she had volunteered her husband Rodger to make the custom wood birdhouse for me.

I went home, called my mom up and asked her to mail me up my favorite children's Golden book for this project. I had no idea the book would be Bambi (which may explain why I come from the country and a lot of family members hunt but I was always against it and never have). My mother crazily sent the book to me priority and it came the same day. What a mother I have!!  Then I connected with Linda and later that week went over to her beautiful home where I talked with she and Rodger about art, the birdhouses, and flower gardens (theirs is amazing and looks like a lot of work).  I left there an hour later with a smile on my face greatly anticipating receiving the birdhouse later the following week.

I picked up the wooden birdhouse with a promise to send pics of the final product.  I raced home and began working on altering the book and birdhouse. I carefully cut and use modge podge to put a page on each side of the birdhouse.  I did at least 3 coats of modge podge by the time I was done and used matte finish not glossy.  I found a branch outside, broke it to size and glued it into the hole as the peg of the birdhouse.   I put the roof on as Linda did hers where you staple the pages down and the cover of the book becomes the roof; however as I was laying in bed later that night and not sleeping I a new idea formed.  The following night I pulled the roof off and just using the front and back cover I cut out shingles about 25 per side of the roof. I then hot glued the shingles on the roof that I created out of cardboard and had stapled onto the birdhouse. To finish it I took the binding of the book and glued it down the center of the roof. I really liked the outcome of the roof this way and the entire final product is very cool.

Of course anyone who knows me knows I have to have a space for the creations I decide to keep so this sat on my table until the next brainstorm it.  Which was about a week later. I had my driveway sealed and when I was pulling up the wooden stakes that blocked the end of the driveway I thought "wow these are nice stakes for staking vampires to bad there's no vampires around." :) Yep, I have quite the imagination. Anyway, I thought one of the stakes would go nicely in my large house plant pot and decided that since the birdhouse didn't have a bottom it might be able to balance on the stand in the plant. And it worked! It is kind of like bringing the outside in. :)

Thank you Linda and Rodger for introducing me to this wonderful way of altering books!

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