I was one of a group of artists asked to create a bird house that would be used in a fund raiser for the new Bird Habitat Garden in University City, Missouri.  The bird garden is a collaborative effort by many environmental groups, native plant professionals, bird and plant lovers.  It is located off Olive Blvd. at Centennial Commons in the rear of the building.

I love decoupage because it is a beautiful art form, and it uses photos and other ephemera that might end up in the recyling bin.  I get stacks and stacks of flower catalogs every year. I love reusing the photos from these and other magazines that are filled with amazing images.  I also wanted to use my own flower mandala photos that were part of an old calendar set.

I start with photos that are cut out in their almost complete form.  Many of the edges will be covered with other photos, so not every photo needs crisp cuts all around.

 

Old stamps have tiny intricate beauty that make a person get up really close to see.  I love the focusing in on small images and and then focusing on larger images right next to the small ones.

 

 

The back and front of each paper cut is covered in glue and layered onto the surface.  I painted the entire wooden bird house with left over kitchen wall paint and covered that with the glued paper cut outs.

 

 

After I finished one side of the roof, I sprayed UV protective gloss coating on to make sure this would work for the entire birdhouse.

 

 

When that looked good, I continued working on covering all the sides.  It is a messy process that I worked on outside on the back deck.

 

 

Finally I finished.  I sprayed all sides and the bottom to protect the papers and to slow down the UV fading.  It was hard to send this birdhouse off the a new home.  Although it can’t be used outside, it can inspire the love of birds.  Here are all the finished sides.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I even covered the bottom, putting my “Flower Mandalas” business card there.

 

 

I wasn’t able to attend the fund raiser where the bird houses were bid on.  I heard though that there were multiple bids.  The winner gave this birdhouse to another woman who loves decoupage and has made many pieces of her own for other fund raisers.  If I remember correctly this woman was inspired by a lecture I gave about decoupage probably fifteen years ago.  It feels like a full circle of shared and inspired creativity and beauty.

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6 Responses to Beauty for the Birds

  1. Diantha says:

    SO beautiful! You are very talented and I love how you used your gorgeous cards! Thank you for sharing!

  2. Jan Aughey says:

    Linda,
    Thanks for sharing your process on making the bird house. Love…love…love it. How lucky to have been the recipent of such a beautiful piece of art.
    Jan

  3. Monica says:

    Really beautiful bird house! Love the idea. And great story! Thanks for sharing. <3

    • Linda Wiggen Kraft says:

      Thanks Monica. I got a thank you note from the woman who was given it as a gift. She loved it all, and especially the foreign stamps. I can’t remember there may have been some from Italy.
      xo LINDA

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