human behavior

Fun with sticks and glue – Part 2

Posted in Art, Crafts, Home improvement by humanb on September 22, 2012

Before I became an only-mildly-kitsch-mosaic-tile-crafter, I was a stick lady.

For my pièce de résistance in driftwood art – i.e. – my only attempt at driftwood art – see Fun with sticks and glue (Part 1). The idea was hardly original, but the result is lovely I think, and I succeeded in finding an artistic and decorative use for – let’s face it – a collection of dirty sticks.

Could my success be repeated?

I’d already made good headway in Operation: Redecorate My Mother-in-Law’s Front Porch while She’s Away. But with only the house number mosaic hung, I still had plenty of bare brick wall. That porch needed some wall art and ideally something using natural, durable materials.

I still had a decent-sized pile of driftwood from my beach combing in Tasmania earlier this year. Unfortunately, I’d used all the interesting and chunky sticks in my first project, so I was literally working with the sticks at the bottom of the bag. But I was confident I could make something worth looking at, and anything would look better than a bare brick wall.

This time, I brought out the big guns – not the glue gun, which sucks. I’ve had to PVA glue at least a dozen pieces of driftwood that have fallen off my original project because they were originally fixed with a hot glue gun.  Don’t use a glue gun.

So here’s what you can do with a bottle of PVA wood glue, a pile of collected driftwood, and a bare brick wall:

A success? Partially. This was an exercise in using everything you’ve got. There was no way I was going to be able to interlock these pieces like a wood puzzle the way I’d done my original piece. So I tried to make something organised (but not pictorial) using every last piece of driftwood left. I think only two pieces didn’t make the shadow box.

About that shadow box: The backing is a piece of MDF that I – wait for it – cut to size with my jigsaw! I found the sides of the frame in the back of my mother-in-law’s car port. They’d been part of the packaging from her new kitchen oven. The frame I painted with the same charcoal stain used for my side table, bench seat and mosaic frame, ensuring that the front porch maintained an artistic cohesiveness.

So all but the backing of this project was made from found wood, which is probably the coolest thing about it.

The look of it at night is even cooler, when the ceiling lights cast shadows against the crisp white background.

I think the piece wants something on the floor beneath it, but I’m not sure what. In the meantime, the front porch is starting to look like a considered living space.

Before the redecorating began:

And after a few craft projects:

But I’m not done yet…


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