I just love shadow boxes and curio cabinets. They treasures stored inside, the mysteries, the stories, they commonality between each item it holds just gets my imagination flowing. I’ve only ever done one multi-cubicle shadow box before, I figured it’s high time to do another!
This “Curious Curio” is just filled to the brim with the curious, the odd, and the weird. Everything just seemed to come together so easily.
It’s super easy to put one together if you use the Keepsake Curio Shrine kit, Relics & Artifacts, and some found objects you most likely already have in your stash. Let’s take a stroll through the curious and the odd and learn how I put this beautiful collection together.
Step 1: Prime your Curio pieces with some lovely VerDay paint and patina according to the package instructions. Don’t be shy with it either! My beautiful color variation is the result of three coats, the last coat being applied with the previous coat still partially wet.
Step 2: Assemble your Curio once the VerDay has completely cured and dried. Once your adhesive has dried, start hacking into some really cool paper for you cubby backgrounds. I used a mix of Graphic 45’s “Steampunk Debutante” and “Old Curiosity Shoppe”.
Step 3: Add a strip of paper around the outside of the curio if you choose to cover the assembly notches. I like decorative edges so I “aged” some white Fleur Dresden trim with VerDay to finish it off. I used a chalk edger to make the very deliberate “lines” on the paper and age it a bit.
Step 4: Now it’s time to focus on the cubbies! I used the Circle Shrine Trinket in one cubicle and the result is beautiful. Use some Art Alchemy Paint and Crackle Accents to dress up your trinket and a micro head from the “Figureheads” set of Relics & Artifacts I ended up going back and finishing mine off with copper studs and Finnabair Micro Beads.
Step 5: What is a “Curious Curio” without some tiny vials of questionable substances? Decorate your vials with medical labels from the “Antique Medicine Bottle Label” collage sheet. I also filled my vials with Art Stones and more Micro Beads. I dressed my vials up further using some jute and leftover Dresden.
Step 6: Let’s add another Trinket shrine, a head with a mind’s eye! I painted my Head Trinket shrine with some more Art Alchemy paint and dressed him up with more micro beads. I toned down the beautiful vivid green with a chalk edger.
Step 7: Let’s add some body parts but without the “eew” factor. The “Milagros” set of Relics & Artifacts are PERFECT for this curio. Now some of the best results happen because of happy accidents and this is one of them. To get that cracked, pivoted, aged porcelain look, apply a REALLY thick coat of Crackle Accents and let it set overnight. The result will be nice crackling along the edges but a shiny and “clean” surface on the main areas.
To get the pivots, I used a pair of pliers and actually hit the pieces directly. Be careful and don’t beat them but don’t be gentle and tap them either. Once you think you’ve done enough damage, brush over the cracks with Artisan Powder and wipe the piece down with a dry napkin.Step 8: The “Treasure” cut-out that serves as my title uses a technique I learned from the amazing and lovely, Linda Cain. I have ALWAYS adored how she does her paint work and blending. She shared her secret with me and I could not believe how simple it was. She paints the piece with one color. Once dry, she does the edges with a second color using a sponge! Brilliant right?! I need more practice but I still love how mine turned out.
Add a drawer pull to finish off the top.
Would you believe that the gold eagle piece is simply the top to an old cologne bottle? Dig around and use your imagination!
These curios contain endless possibilities and the fun is limitless. Be on the lookout for more of these coming from me!
Keepsake Curio Shrine Kit
Chipboard Art Scrip Word Cut-Outs Set 3
Circle Shrine Trinket Pack of 2
Head Trinket Keepsakes Kit Pack of 2
Antique Medicine Bottle Label Collage Sheet
Ornate Fleur Cut-Outs Style 1
German Dresden Border Fleur White
Frozen Charlotte China Doll Small (2″ – 2.5″)
Vintage Vacuum Tube
Antique Brass Fleur-de-lis-Crown Set of 4
VerDay Paint & Patina Kit
Vintage Mechanicals Clock Face Small
Art Alchemy Metallique Paint “Gold Rush”
Art Alchemy Metallique Paint “Royal Red”
Art Alchemy Metallique Paint “Green Olive”
Art Ingredients Micro Beads “Copper” (linked to Bronze)
Art Ingredients Mini Art Stones
Art Basics Soft Matte Gel
Ranger Inkssentials Crackle Accents
“Milagros” Relics & Artifacts
“Figureheads” Relics & Artifacts
Tim Holtz Locket Keys
Graphic 45 “Steampunk Debutante”
Graphic 45 “Old Curiosity Shoppe”
Various Found Objects