Thursday, May 6, 2010

And this week's obsession is?

Wardian Cases, Curiosity Cabinets, Kunstkammer, Wunderkammer, Cabinets of Wonder, whatever you call them I'm into them.  So much so that I've set aside all of my other pet projects, and Mrs. Hughes will tell you there are several, to focus on this one.  Mrs. Hughes pointed me to an odd etsy posting a few months back that was offering a Victorian curiosity cabinet.  I hadn't really heard of them so I looked them up: very cool, if somewhat macbre.  I thought it would be fun to try to make one of my own.  While searching for items to place into my Cabinet of Wonders I noticed that there aren't that many people doing them, and almost none for sale online that cost under $300 or so.  So, since I went to all that trouble finding all of the sources from feathers, to emu eggs, to odd sea shells and the like I decided to just order some additional items and create some cabinets for resale.

So I've got stuff coming in, and I've figured out how to fit upcycling into the whole thing.  While staring off into spaces and trying to think up a cheaper alternative to shadow boxes or plastic cases I got the idea that a cigar box might work as a base and a lid for a case.  I didn't have one in the house but I did have a little curio or jewelry box that is made the same was as the nicer wooden cigar boxes.  The lid fits over the bottom of the box.

After learning how to cut glass online I cobbled together my first cabinet.  A fairly simple undertaking really, besides cutting the glass which is a real pain in the butt.

 If you look close you can see the keyhole and clasp from the jewelry box.  The blue stuff is painter's tape.
I used that to hold the glass in place while adhering everything.  It's been a learning process but I think these will turn out great.  I've got some unusual items coming in as well as some cigar boxes to create several of these.  I will do another post as soon as I have a couple created.  I will be selling them on Ebay, Etsy, and off of a website I am working on.

Here are a few images I found online.  My cabinets are going to be less dark, no skulls or mummified things.  And if I use bugs and the like the will be casts, you have to have a special license to resell dried insect specimens I've discovered, so I would rather avoid that.  I hope to re-create some critters though by upcycling some items, we will see how that works out.

More soon!
The Upcycler

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