Friday, April 9, 2010

*Spoiler for my partners/Petite Inspiration Matchbox Swap: Nesting Edition*

Just a can click on these pictures and see them in much better detail.

I just couldn't wait to show you these pictures. This is one of all three of my matchboxes. The swap was sponsored by Heather of Speckled Egg and we traded with three different partners. Each of my partners struck me as very different women so I tailor-made the boxes to fit each person's style and tastes.

This one was made for a woman who does romantic and delicate work in pastels and lace. i covered the box with pale pink silk (well, it really was polyester, but it looked like silk!) dupioni and edged it with a thin gold and pink ribbon. The birds were dry-washed with a pale pink...both father, who is standing guard, and mother, who is nesting. The paper flowers were from Martha Stewart. I wanted to make flowers from the dupioni but these just worked better.

The sides had small pink beads dangling from the bottom and another pink ribbon. The birds were also embellished with a pink feather and "twists" of pearls and crystals. It was quite simple but I didn't want to mess it up by going any farther. You can see the mother here. She is sitting on three pale pink eggs.

This woman describes herself as liking things that "looked like they had been out in the barn for awhile." I toyed with making her something more rustic, but then looked at a picture that she said made her happy. It was of a Cath Kidston set of dishes, consisting of a polka dot plate and a rose-patterned bowl. It is hard to see the rose pattern, but it had yellow, red and green roses.

I found two small swatches of Cath Kidston material on E-Bay and anxiously awaited for their arrive. I was so disappointed when I got them...the scale was much too big for a tiny matchbox. So off I went to my local Staples and copied the prints at half size (they would not let me copy on fabric paper :-().  I covered the box with the paper and edged it with sky blue polka-dot ribbon. The inside, candle-cup feet and peg knob were painted a pearly blue. I painted polka dots on the inside. All the the boxes had the added feet and knob and I liked the extra height and details.

The red bird was "sugared" with clear glitter and rested on three pearly blue eggs in a nest. The vintage flowers just seemed to fit in.  I just realized I forgot to recolor the bird's black eyes. Kat thought they looked spooky...and they do look a little strange.

I did throw a few rusty keys in the box for fun!

This is an upright version of the last box. This woman had traveled to many places. I covered the box with some blue and navy silky material that  looked Moroccan, then glued a piece of flower embroidery from the same material on the bottom ot the inside box. The German scrap of a boy and girl holding flowers and the little vintage German corsage sealed the deal and it suddenly looked very Germanic. I put the butterfly on (it was on a spring) to give it more movement. It looked a tiny bit blah still so I glittered the sides of the heart with a fine Martha Stewart gold glitter that matched the gold ribbon on the edges. I put many things inside that were from countries around the world.

Here is a view of the inside of the box with unidentifiable treasures though I do see a wired Chinese pendant. Last time, I arranged my treasures in an orderly fashion. This time, I had so many bits and bobs that I just painted the inside and tossed them in!

I love decorating these matchboxes. I did my first one for the Silver Bella Advent Matchbook Swap and did Heather of Speckled Egg's first Petite Inspiration Matchbox Swap: Valentine Edition. These were so much easier to do. For the Advent Calendar, we made twenty-four of the same one, using tiny, tiny matchboxes. Fun, but harder for my first attempt.

The funny thing is walking into stores and looking for the boxes and the right size. Somehow the question always just seems to come up, "What are you using this for?" When I try to explain, I usually get blank looks or no further questions. A clerk once asked me, "Why would you want to decorate a matchbox?" He didn't understand:-) Only those who would do it, get it!

We also have sacks and sacks of matches around the house. Let me know if you need matches!!!



  1. They are delicious. Just delicious. Well done. I know whose swap I want to be from now on...

  2. They are so fabulous Suz!!!

  3. Great job! Yeah I too get that look from sales people every time I buy something for art making..LOL!

    Sandy xox

  4. Suz, the boxes are lovely!!! We are back from the show in San Juan went far better than I thought! Didn't make a fortune, but oh well!

  5. add me add me adddddddddmmmmrrrreeeeee

  6. These are amazing...wonderful job!

  7. Suz- these are just so pretty and fun!
    have a great week! xo natalea

  8. Oh, Suz!!! I love my box and all the goodies...You are just the kindest lady. I am so grateful that we ended up sitting together in the back of the room @ Teresa McFayden's Silver Bella workshop! Just loved everything you sent....The little surprise for the kids was so sweet too. They thought the pop rocks were just a hoot...

    You made 3 different boxes!! (How many exclaimation marks can I put in one comment..sorry but I'm still just as excited as when I opened up the box you sent...I just kept saying over and over, "Oh, my goodness..I love it!")

    So, again I must say Thank You, Thank You, Thank You...I mailed my three packages off today so I'm hopeful they will arrive to ya'll by the end of the week...Steph

  9. These boxes are adorable!
    Looking forward to meeting you at Silver Bella!!

  10. I just noticed that the two of you are in St Paul. I live just south of there. So much fun to meet people in my neck of the woods!

    Love all your matchboxes! I have a love affair with making those. Yours are super sweet. I am sure your swap partners are going to love them.

    Have a great day! I could do without all this wind!

  11. They all turned out beautiful. I certainly appreciate all the effort and creativity you put into them! xo Joan@anythinggoeshere

  12. Hi sweetie!
    Thanks for droppin' by the Yaya! Love those match boxes...very creative! Have a beautiful and creative week...xo...deb

  13. Suz, I am so happy you posted pictures of all three boxes. Each one is a very special work of art and I feel so privledged (not sure that is spelled correctly) to be a lucky recipient of one : )
    It has been a delight having you as a partner and new friend. You are one very special lady my dear. Again I thank you for your abundance of kindness.

  14. Now I need to post all three of yours! I feel fortunate, too, Catherine. They were all so lovely!

  15. Suz,
    Besides being just delicious{!} the time and thought you put into making these so personal for each lucky lady was sooooo special. So many fun details...right down to those darling little chubby feet you put on the bottom!

    You mentioned you had old bottles, were they the ones with the clock face on them like mine? If so, do you know anything about them?

    happy, happy on your day,

  16. For sure a Twin Cities blog party is in order. My sister and I keep saying the same thing! When should we plan it??? I adore a good party!!!

  17. Oh my goodness...these little boxes are delightful!!! Do you know what I like the very best about this post?? I love the thought & consideration that you put into each box for each friend you were making it for. That is soooooo lovely friend! Thanks for stopping by & visiting my costume design post. How fun it must have been when your daughter was working towards that, what a great seamstress she must be. Have a creative weekend!!!

  18. Match boxes sure lend themselves to being altered, don't they? And its surprising, just how much fits into one! Its been a long time since I did a match box swap, they are really fun.

  19. Hi Suz!
    Thanks so much for the visit! You were sooo right about me loving your matchboxes!!!