TUTORIAL: Rustic bird finials

P1070135Here’s a picture of some of them in my booth at Curiosities.  And here is how I made them:

7.4.13 CUR + projects dresser 006I gathered assorted thrifted pillar candle holders and a bag of styrofoam balls, also from the thrift store.  (styro is CRAZY expensive to buy new!)

7.4.13 CUR + projects dresser 007It took a bit of trial and error to find the stands that best fit the size of styro balls I had.

7.4.13 CUR + projects dresser 008Don’t forget to try them UPSIDE down too.  Oftentimes it’s a better fit. and the wider flared top as the bottom created a good visual balance.

7.4.13 CUR + projects dresser 009Perfect fit!

7.4.13 CUR + projects dresser 010Once all paired up I glued the styro to the base with tacky glue.

7.4.13 CUR + projects dresser 011I wanted my birds to have crowns, but lately the paper and glitter crowns have been getting bent.   So I formed crowns out of Fimo clay fitted to the top of the birds heads.  Popped them into the oven to dry (per package instructions).  Then gently popped them OFF the birds heads, to glue them on permanently with e6000.   

7.4.13 CUR + projects dresser 012I positioned the birds on their pedestals, then glued them on with e6000.  But IGNORE that!  I learned the hard way that I SHOULD have plastered my styro FIRST, then glued the birds on.  

7.4.13 CUR + projects dresser 018Got out mu big ole tub of joint compound and covered the styro balls with a thin layer and let dry overnight.

7.4.13 CUR + projects dresser 022And NOW glue your birds onto the covered balls using e6000.  Let your glue dry for a day, then add another layer of the joint compound.  You can smooth out the joint compound with your hands once it’s partially dry.  I wanted to leave some of the lumps and bumps for a more organic look.  You can also sand off the excess lumps and bumps once completely dry.

7.4.13 CUR + projects dresser 025I wanted the WHOLE piece to have that organic look, so after the second coat on the balls dried, I applied little bits ‘here and there’ on the birds and the bases.  Let dry overnight again.

7.4.13 CUR + projects dresser 026

And sand to smooth as much as you want.

7.4.13 CUR + projects dresser 024This one is a bigger ball than the rest of the others, and the base has some nice decorative indentations on it so I didn’t cover them with joint compound.

7.4.13 CUR + projects dresser 029Then I spray painted then all white.

7.4.13 CUR + projects dresser 030Forgot to mention that I bought the birds at the craft store.  (on SALE of course!)

7.4.13 CUR + projects dresser 032Did this one little one with no ball, just for some variety.

7.5.13 curiosities only 009Voila!!

4.10.12 stars birds 025This is a batch from a couple of years ago with just the birds on white pedestals.

4.10.12 stars birds 035And some more from my ‘pre-crown’ days!

4.10.12 stars birds 083And some more!  Yep!  I make a lot of these, because I SELL a lot of them!

5.1.13 Stars Curiosities 024And some that I put the sheet music crowns on.

4.16.13 Cuiosities Stars 034

 

 

6.4.13 projects CURIOUS Stars 088And some with glitter crowns and even as cloche toppers!

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One CommentLeave a comment

  1. Love the birds. When you said “finial” that made me think they were for lamps. I love them! However, I think I’m going to see if I can make them and use them (smaller birds, of course) for lamp finials. I’m into birds these days big time. Anyway, keep up the good work.


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