The conversation always starts out the same with me asking a friend, a neighbor, or a stranger .. "You're not throwing that out, are you?" and ends with my husband asking "you brought home more junk?" Actually, his question is more of a statement than inquiry. He already knows the answer. Simply put, I just can't resist bringing home treasures that others might possibly-because-they-just-don't see-my-vision-yet, view as trash. I have always been this way. The term Packrat was what my parents endearingly labeled me as, but I preferred to think of myself as the majestic and noble bird, the Magpie, a creative scavenger. Architectural items, rusted pieces of metal, gnarled pieces of trees, sea glass, weather beaten boards and unusual rocks, were and still are my materials of choice. I also have a weakness for wooden chairs, broken or otherwise.
Let's think for a moment about a chair, perhaps missing a rung and the seat split down the middle. That chair can be turned into a planter, a table, and even a shelf. The possibilities are indeed endless with the right imagination.
It is that vision of creative possibilities that led me to asking my friend Darcy if I could have her old birdcage. We were in her barn on a different mission when I spotted the black wire of the cage. It had belonged to her Grandmother and had been sitting for years up in the loft. That was my inspiration. Next I gathered a metal spray of ivy leaves that I had taken from the box marked "free Stuff" from last fall's church rummage sale. As you can see in the picture, it is that not quite brass and not quite copper look of the 60's/70's.
They both got painted Ivory, after all the plastic components had been stripped from the cage. I then purchased one of those birds everyone is talking about from The Dollar Store. I didn't like the way it was painted so I gave it a quick fix with some of the same Ivory paint.
The cage needed a base. Rummaging around in the garage, I found a basket plate, a lawnsale find from year's ago that was a perfect fit. Once painted the same Ivory, I had my base ready and now needed something to cover the whole at the top of the cage where the ugly plastic hanger had been. I used a carved rose wooden pin that I recently found at Goodwill for $.99 cents.
Here is a close up of the pin.
Since the ivy leaves were metal, they were easy to install up alongside the outside of the cage, intertwined with the framework of the cage.
I first covered the bottom of cage with grass, my dollar store bird and a few eggs. It was cute but not enough.
I placed a nest with eggs, a Christmas Tree Shop after Easter clearance special for $.49 cents, in an old ironstone bowl. The bowl is solid, no chips or cracks, just a slight discoloration on the inside, enough to have landed it a "free" pile of a sale. By placing the nest in the bowl, it gives the nest more of a presence. I wasn't sure if I wanted the bird inside or outside.
I was pleased with my little creation of free bits and pieces, but it was still missing something. Using some sheet music found at a recent lawnsale (3 large bags for FREE - A giddy lawnsale moment), I decoupaged the basket. That is what finally made the piece all come together.
Ta-Da. Here is the finished project of my Trash to Treasure. $1.50 (bird and nest) plus the paint for $2.50. My friend Darcy hasn't seen the birdcage since it's transformation. Her home is decorated in the Shabby Chic style. I have a feeling she is going to want her birdcage back. Oh well, she does have a birthday coming up.
I am joining three new parties today, Jane's Frugalicious Friday at Finding Fabulous, Wendy's Frugal Friday at Shabby Nest, and Gina's Transformation Thursday at the Shabby Chic Cottage. I am a little nervous to display my creation along with all the other amazing projects shown at these parties, but here goes.
Have a wonderful weekend.
Got it at Goodwill