Happy Wednesday.. Just wanted to share a commission piece I finished for a little girl’s bedroom. Her Mom wanted an 8×8 inch Shadow Box that featured the items you see in a 10×10 inch “Sweet 16 Shadow Box” HERE that I sold in my ETSY store, but the one below is for a girl who is three years old and her Mom wants to hang in her bedroom. The date is the little girl’s birthdate as per her Mom’s request, and she wanted it as a keepsake for her daughter! I so love making these altered dresses.
Let me begin by saying I am so grateful to Angela Holt for her amazing youtube tutorials that inspire me to create these dresses! Since this was going to be included in a shadow box, I needed to be mindful of the depth of the box and how “poofy” the dress could be. Because it would be encased in this glass enclosed box, I began with a base of the Sizzix Bigz L Dress Die HERE. I cut it out of thick chipboard and then coated with gesso. Afterward, I used Tim Holtz Acrylic Paint in the color of the dress- in this case “Pink Sherbert”. The TH acrylic paints cover chipboard so much better than my other acrylic paints. I do this on BOTH sides of the die cut. You will notice that for this dress, I cut away the little “straps” and made it strapless which makes adding the fabric much easier.
Then the fun begins. I start with a layer of folded 2″wide strips of pink tulle -using a hot glue gun or Fabri -Tac- around the waist to secure it. I only do this on the front of the dress because it must lay flat. I trim the tulle hem with scissors when done so it hangs right below the scallops of the die. I then added the lace the same way, pinching and making pleats as I glue but I add the lace around the entire die cut. I love using lace with a finished edge and here the scallop mimics the scallop of the die cut. I always begin attaching fabric at the back of the die cut and end there neatly folding over each edge for a clean seam down the back. I do this because I mount this dress on Tim Holtz “mirror” cardstock HERE and I want the back of the dress to be as visible and pretty as the front, depending on how large the mirror and how much of the dress is shown. The pic below shows the top part of the back of the dress reflected in the mirror and you can see a hint of the sash, pearls and there is one rose in the center back that matches the small front roses. No matter at what angle you view the shadow box, you see the back of the dress and it is so pretty.
Once done with the skirt, I add my lace to the top of the dress. NOTE: I found lace trim at Joanns where the scallops perfectly matched the sweetheart neckline..so it was easy peasy to match up and glue on, again beginning and ending at the back of the dress with a folded over seam, and adding dots of glue at the edge of the lace only. Now you can see why I painted the die cut as any pink that shows through blends beautifully!
Last, I added some lace pearl trim as a sash -beginning and ending in back of the die cut and covered where the ends met with a rose. As the top is added last and its edge hangs OVER the top of the skirt, that along with the sash hides the top of the skirt that was glued down first. After that, you can add pearls, sequins, and glitter…but since this was for a little girl, I made it much more juvenile than I would a teen or adult design.
Last, I added a “mirror” using two Spellbinder Dies, ovals and Floral Oval dies. I attached pearls around the mirror to accent it. The beautiful 8 inch (yes 8 inch) Lattice Valance border die is from Cheery Lynn HERE… so beautiful and perfect for my 8×8 inch shadow boxes. I attached it to the front of the box to give dimension to the other elements most of which are attached with foam tape. I will be using this border a lot! I ran it through my xyron and added glitter to the die cut to make it pop. The resin frame is from Prima, flowers from Wild Orchid Crafts and filmstrip from Tim Holtz. Last the gorgeous paper is from Maja- “Sofiero- Strolling down the Rose Path”. (HINT: I waited until the LAST and I mean LAST minute to pull off the release paper from the mirror paper. This way the “mirror” was not scratched and no glitter attached to it. As soon as I did it, I adhered the dress and put it in a safe place until all other paper, die cuts and embellies were glued in place and it was last to be secured! )
I hope you are inspired to use your die cuts in a different way and to experiment with fabric. Have a great day, and as always, thank you for your kind comments!