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Wednesday, October 1, 2014


The "House of Poe" is my ode to Edgar Allen Poe the master of the macabre.  I love all of his stories and if you are a fan too, I hope you like this project.  Within the larger piece are smaller items that could be stand-alone pieces or part of a larger project.  In the tutorial below, I'll show you how to make a clock from a matchbox, a table & desk from an Altoids tin, a bookcase coffin, a working hourglass, and other bits and bobs.

I started with the leftover section of the paper mache house accordion shrine. This is the piece leftover from the Little Red Riding Hood project.  You could certainly use the entire shire to make your own House of Poe.

I started by cutting out a section of the house to create a niche.  To make a larger house, I cut two 6” x 4” panels from heavy chipboard and painted all of the pieces back.
Next, I papered the pieces front and back.
In the meantime, while I was working on the bits and bobs for the house, I realized that the house was not big enough to accommodate all the stuff I had planned (yikes!).  The solution was to cut a second set of 5” x 3”.panels.
To create dimension, the curtains are popped up from the panels (using double-stick foam tape) and the corners are popped from the curtains.  In the center section, the orange curtain is popped up inside the niche and the grey curtain is popped up in front of the niche.  The corners are also popped up from the grey curtain.
The window is made from a die-set and is flanked by two pieces of Dresden that look like shutters.  I glued the Dresden on with a hinge, so that I could bend the shutters forward.  In the background is a skeleton specter.

I used double-stick foam tape to attach the chair and to pop it up from the wall.

The room needed surfaces to display cool stuff so I decided to create a desk out of the bottom of an Altoids tin and a table out of the top.
I covered the bottom of the tin with paper and Dresden.  To darken the gold Dresden, I first painted it black and then rubbed on Inca Gold Gilders paste.  The feet of the table are made from resin gables.  
I glued the gables together to create a corner with the long gables in the front, painted them black and rubbed them with the Gilders paste.  I only made feet for the front as the back is attached to the chair.  The last step was to add decorative swirls and a brass bat with a cat-eye.
To make an inkwell and quill, I used a rondelle, bead cap, and feather from my stash.
Other decorative items on the table are books, a candelabra, papers, a letter, and a key.
To make the table, I covered the Altoids tin top with paper and trimmed it with lace and black sweeper fringe.
The legs are made from a wooden chess piece (turned upside down) and a cup (all painted black and rubbed with Inca Gold Gilder paste.
On the table, you’ll find a candelabra, open book (supported by other books in the back), an Ouija board, a rather large spider in a glass dome and a working hourglass.
To make the working hourglass, I used two tiny round bottles and two rondelles.  I filled one of the bottles with sand and glued the rims of the bottles together with Glossy Accents.  I added the rondelles to the ends and a bat serves as decoration.
The base of the small round table is made of the same chest piece as the legs on the Altoids tin table.  I glued a rondelle to the top of the chest piece as without it, the top of the chest piece would stick up through the hole in the tabletop (Santos Doll Halos) making the surface of the table uneven.
On the top of the table, I glued a talon holding an eyeball bead.  I painted the red veins on the eye with acrylic paint giving the eye a bloodshot appearance.

To make the matchbox clock, I started by papering the matchbox case.  I used a black marker to color the ends of the matchbox drawer.  Next using chain and eye pins, I attached spiders for weights and a scull bead for the pendulum. 
I cut a Dresden scroll in half and glued the halves to the top and bottom of the case.
I used the template from the previous Coffin Apothecary project to create the bookcases.  Click here if you missed the template and tutorial. 
I reduced the size of the template to fit on the wall.

The bookcase is filled with books and other creepy decor.  The books are just a facade. I backed them with cardstock and used layers of double-stick foam tape to attach them to the back of the bookcase.
I added the gargoyle bead to the top the globe using a toothpick, which is glued to the back and runs through the hole in the bead. The final touch is the bat on the bottom.
The base for the house is made from thick chipboard that in the back, matches the angles of the walls and is straight in the front.  Once I glued the walls together I used them to trace the angles on the base.
I covered the base with decorative paper.
The Front
The tombstones are first painted black.  Next, I stippled them in dark grey and then in a lighter grey to give them the appearance of stone.
The trees are made from real tree branches that are painted black.
I used decorative paper to cover the front and then the same architectural pieces as I used in the inside of the house.  For the front door, I used the entire architectural piece and cut out layers and attached them with double-stick foam tape to make the front door pop.

I used black wrought iron Dresden Scrolls and brass winged griffins to create sconces on the sides of the door.   The knocker on the door is a lion head handle.
I used a stitched leaf ribbon for vines.  A raven bead guards the entrance.
Alpha Stamps Supplies Used for this Project


Kimberly at ArtJoyStuff said...

Laura, this is magic! I love how your mind works!
Thank you for sharing your process.
enJOY a lovely day,

claude said...

très bel ensemble et merci pour les explications

Debi said...

I'm speechless ! That would be an heirloom! Spectacular, I must share this as a FB friend won a trip to the museum events coming up!
Amazing indeed! xoDebi

Createology said...

Your art is forever uber creative and amazing. The details you go to for the perfect effect is beyond the moon. Creative Poe Bliss...

Karenliz Henderson said...

WOW, WOW and WOW! This piece is amazing. I love the clock.

sheilaAR said...

Laura, you are an amazement and bring such joy to me as I gape at every little detail of your work!! Wonderful, simply so fun and well done, wickedly macabre and delightful!! Thanks so much for the tutorial, xo sheila

Little Gothic Horrors said...

This is breathtakingly gorgeous! ❤

smokeysmom said...

I've said it before and I'll say it again, Laura, your work is amazing! The intricate details, oh my, amazing! You keep me inspired:)

Kerstin F. said...

Wow,wow amazing!! I'm also speechless, this is really beautiful, very inspired and a piece of art!! Gorgeous and many thanks for this tutorial! Greetings, Kerstin

linnea-maria said...

It's simply brilliant!! I love it!

Hettienne Grobler said...

wow! just beautiful and the details are incredible!! thank you

johala said...

Hi Laura!
You'r just a genius woman!!!!
Really stunning and funny!
Hugs and kisses

Unknown said...

Fantastic! Your attention to detail, and creativity is awesome. Thank you for sharing your process.

barbara macaskill said...

Magically delicious!! Loving every little detail of this fantastical creation!! GMTA because I am already doing a few of these things for a creation I am working on. Hoping nobody thinks I stole the idea from you but if they do I know that I started before I saw this. GREAT job creating such a wonderfully realistic scene and I am in love with it! TFS!

Gina said...

OMG! this is the most amazing thing I've seen in ages! Congratulations on your genius :D XXX

nelda said...

Absolutely wonderful. Love the tables, the bookcase, the clock, everything!

Andi's English Attic said...

In awe as usual. Love it all.

Elizabeth said...

Wow! I know I will come back to this post again and again to take in all of the marvelous details. Amazing project!

Teri Calia said...

LOVE it, Laura! Bravo!!!

Anonymous said...

OMG Laura, my jaw is on the floor right now. LOVE LOVE LOVE this piece! Karen.x

Mixed Media/ Altered Crafts said...

Wow! I am so impressed with your unique creativity! I love how you built your furniture pieces, amazing!

Viki Banaszak said...

OMG!!! This is so cool! What a labor of love.