Before I started.
I want to put a scene in this glass box. A small hill of grass with a nest holding a small sleeping baby fairy. (which I haven't been able to find yet) There will be a few animals around: frog, turtle, and a couple of birds. I'll stain the box and set more scene with the mini vines.
Pictured above were my supplies, and thoughts for the box. A few things have changed, for the better. Listed below are the steps I took along with lots of my rambling (which I call tips).
Unfortunately the only picture I have of the finished box is fuzzy. Sorry about that, it's below the steps.
Stuff it's made from and stuff I used...
Unpainted box with glass sides and top
Small vines in a bunch
Assorted miniature resin animals
Metallic purple paint
Glossy Acrylic spray
Mini birds nest
Silk flowers (taken apart)
Aleene's Tacky Glue
I took off all hinges and latches, taped up all the glass (inside and out) and painted the box metallic purple. Then I added an applique of a butterfly to the underside, and put a couple of thin coats of clear gloss acrylic spray over it all.
When it was dry I measured and cut a square of sheet moss for the bottom. I had intended to use felt, but hated the fake look it had. The sheet moss was a new product at my local craft store and this is the first time I had used it. It was easy to cut and work with. It did have a thick layer of dirt on the bottom, but not much of anything came off easily. I just shook it gently, and I loved how soft and thick it looked after it was put in place.
I arranged my flora, putting small vines in each corner that would run vertical along the inside all the way to the top. I also added one longer vine at the back that started at a corner then ran horizontal towards along the back then bend towards the middle where the nest was going to be placed. I had purchased a small vine bunch when it was on sale and just cut off what I needed. I always seem to have some extra flora on hand. I wanted a sense of forest but I didn't want the glass to be obstructed.
I then chose where my small hidden animals were going to be. For the animals I found small, I sized by eye, birds, turtle and frogs. There are made from poly resin and already painted. I used two birds, one frog, and one turtle.
I hadn't glued anything yet, just placing. After I decided where everything was going to go, including the nest, I took it all apart.
Finally, I glued the corner vines in first so the bottoms would be covered by the moss. I used Aleene's Tacky Glue, it comes in a gold bottle, love that stuff. I put a healthy amount in the corner to hold the vine bottom because I wanted it placed so the right side of the vine would be seen from the outside of the box and since it curved the other way I wanted to make sure when the glue dried that it wasn't going anywhere. I taped the vines up in the position I wanted them to be in.
Next I swirled glue into the bottom of the box. Again, I put a decent amount since I was going to be placing the moss on it and I was hoping some of it would reach through the dried dirt to the plant material. I gently placed the moss square inside and tweaked things till they looked nice. I then put glue on the end of the long vine that would be laying down and stuck the end into one of the corners. I left it to dry a day.
When I returned to it I removed the tape. I didn't like the way the vines all leaned heavily towards the middle. I wanted the sleeping fairy to be the main attraction, not the flora. Becoming impatient with it I broke out the super glue and glued two leaves from each of the two front vines to the top inside rim of the box, on the wood, not on the glass, so they would stand out of the way. I really liked the way it looked, and it dried super fast of course. I left the two back vines leaning forward, it gave it some character without being TOO much foliage.
I placed my animals again, hiding them slightly under leaves. The birds where glued onto the wood high up in opposite corners using superglue. The frog and turtle were glued right to the moss using a big drop of the tacky glue. Both glues worked well for their purposes.
I once again heavily glued the nest right to the moss using the tacky glue, pushing it down slightly to settle it. Then I glued two silk flowers on top of the nest using the same glue and concentrating it in the middle so the flower petals wouldn't be stiff. The flowers were bought on sale and came in a container and by color. I've never seen them again and I'm glad I bought one pack of each color when I did. They don't have any stems on them, only the cloth flower and a small hole in the middle of it. I imagine if you bought some flowers and just dissected them you could get the same thing.
This is when I put the hinges and clasp back on.
Last, but most important came the sleeping baby fairy. I tried to find one to purchase so it would look really nice in the box. But, alas the only thing I found suitable was very expensive. So , I made it with the help of Paul and this woman's website. Annie's Minis
Paul made the face and ears, which are my favorite part, and I made the rest. I changed the wings however. I simply purchased some fake dragonflies at my craft store and pulled the wings out of them. They had a little wire at their tips and worked wonderfully. I also bought some fake butterflies that had wings made from feathers in case the dragonflies didn't work. After I cooked the fairy and superglued the wings in place I used superglue again and glued the fairy down to the flowers. I debated over that. Would my friend like to open the box and take the fairy out and look at it, or should I glue everything so, nothing will come loose. I decided since my fairy wasn't THAT great, it should probably be viewed through the glass anyway. :-) I did enjoy making it though, so maybe I'll do another one. I bought one package of light flesh tone polymer clay and used about a third of it.
After I knew everything was dried I painted my initials on the underside below the butterfly and sprayed the smallest amount of vanilla fragrance inside on the moss, so when it was opened the first time it would smell really nice. Other touches..... I added some very fine pinkish glitter to the fairy along with the blush included in the directions. I also added the blush in crevices, it made it look more real somehow.
You can see the yellow and brown bird in the lower left hand corner and the frog is hidden in that same corner below the leaves. In the opposite corner is another bird, all brown. The turtle is so well hidden in this picture you're just going to have to believe me that it's there. The front of the box is in the bottom corner and you can see how the vines there don't lean over the moss as much as the ones in the back.