Showing posts with label shrine. Show all posts
Showing posts with label shrine. Show all posts

Tuesday, February 14, 2017

The Little Death Matchbox Shrine

Do you celebrate Valentine's Day?

We don't...

Well, not really...

Okay, I confess, last year asked for chocolates and a card. After almost 25 years with the fella with no romantic demands, I don't think it was asking too much.

This year Mr Pixie asked what I wanted for Valentine's. I said "Nothing" but quickly changed my mind and requested a cheesecake and his spot on the couch.

Mr. P has actually been quite woo-ey over the past few months. It's so out of the ordinary that family members have asked if one of us is dying. For the record, we're both fine. *knock on wood*

Speaking of death....

The Little Death Matchbox Shine for Love and Lovers w/ tute - Nichola Battilana

I made this piece specifically to celebrate Valentine's Day. "The Little Death" matchbox shrine is a bit of a cheeky joke with "La petite mort" a metaphor for sexual orgasm.

The Little Death Matchbox Shine for Love and Lovers w/ tute - Nichola Battilana

Despite there being a little skull smack dab in the middle, and it being called 'The Little Death', this isn't about doom and gloom. It's sex, love and romance baby!

The Little Death Matchbox Shine for Love and Lovers w/ tute - Nichola Battilana

Some of those little paper flowers look like chrysanthemums, a symbol of joy and optimism. Maybe they are asters, talisman of love and a symbol of patience.

The Little Death Matchbox Shine for Love and Lovers w/ tute - Nichola Battilana

There's a golden butterfly, the symbol of the soul and positive transformation.

That shiny amber something at the bottom of the shrine? A nod to Freya, the Norse goddess of love, sex, beauty and death. Freya would weep amber tears while waiting for her beloved husband to return to her from his extended journeys.

The Little Death Matchbox Shine for Love and Lovers w/ tute - Nichola Battilana

Ok, maybe there is a tiny bit of death in all of this, but so many symbols associated with love, sex and life also share a connection with death. And why not, that's what we do isn't it? We live, we love, we die... hopefully we do it all well.

If you're interested in seeing "The Little Death" being made, hop over HERE or watch below

And here's a list of the supplies I used to create that wee shrine.

• coloured tissue paper
Creative Paperclay
• standard match box
• chess rook
• paper (I used a vintage love poem and G45 scrapbook paper)
• charms (metal crown, stamped brass butterfly)
2 Symmetrical Flourishes Silicone Mold
Flower Soft (used for flower centres)
Narrow Gold Fleur Dresden Borders*
Tiny Dot Dresden Borders - Gold*
• acrylic paint
• glue

Note: The tool I mention in the video is a ball stylus... not necessary, but a handy thing to have around.

Whether you're celebrating today or not, I'm sending a little love your way.

Happy Valentine's Day, sweetie pies!

Sunday, December 11, 2016

Day 11 - Tiny Gnomish Lucky Charm Shrines

I'm rather pleased with myself... which usually spells trouble.

Tiny Gnome Luck Charms - Nichola Battilana
But as these little things are meant for luck, hopefully I can avoid trouble just this once.
Tiny Gnome Luck Charms - Nichola Battilana

I have noticed that many vintage greeting and post cards that feature red capped toadstools also show off good luck charms like four leafed clovers and horseshoes. 

Tiny Gnome Luck Charms - Nichola Battilana

What better use of these little Turrets than to turn them into the tiniest luck shrines?!

Tiny Gnome Luck Charms - Nichola Battilana

With the tinest little gnomes added for extra luck I'm sure that I'll (mostly) avoid trouble from now on.

Tiny Gnome Luck Charms - Nichola Battilana

Friday, September 02, 2016

Wee Winged Shrines with Tutorial

Can you believe it's the first Friday of September?! (What happened to the summer? Seriously, where'd it go?) The good news is that means it's tutorial day and I have a a fun and fantastical project for you. 

This month I wanted to encourage the spreading of good will, kindness and nice surprises. These little winged shrines are just the ticket! They're pretty easy to put together, and you can get a bit smooshy and sloppy in your mess making and have a lot of fun with them.

Wee Winged Goodness Shrines with Tutorial - Nichola Battilana

Each of these sweet things uses a Mini House Shadowbox as a base, and Victorian Corners to finish off the peak.

Wee Winged Goodness Shrines with Tutorial - Nichola Battilana

Add some wings from the Steampunk Shape Set and then whatever embellishments your heart desires. Buttons, little paper flowers, charms... you name it!

Wee Winged Goodness Shrines with Tutorial - Nichola Battilana

The images I've chosen were all selected from She has a lovely selection of images that are free to use. The sentiments are just snipped from discarded books, but you could easily write your own or use a commercial sentiment.

Wee Winged Goodness Shrines with Tutorial - Nichola Battilana

I think these are absolutely the sweetest and I'm sure that given as a gift, especially a surprise for no reason at all, they'd certainly help to spread cheer and goodness.

To help you make your own, here's how I put these cuties together

And here are all of the supplies I used in the pieces above.
Misc. decorative bits & bobs and embellishments
Acrylic craft paint
Instant glue

Friday, August 26, 2016

Nyx and the Benevento Walnut Tree

I finished the work in progress I showed off yesterday. While it could have gone in a million different directions, this piece is all about the goddess Nyx.

Nyx and the Benevento Walnut Tree - Nichola Battilana 
Nyx has existed from the beginning. She is the goddess of the Night and the mother of Light and Day (as well as gods of dreams, sleep, death, pain and more).

Nyx and the Benevento Walnut Tree - Nichola Battilana

In one version of her mythology, she was a great black bird and laid an egg from which Eros, the golden winged Spirit of Love emerges.

Nyx and the Benevento Walnut Tree - Nichola Battilana

At the centre of the piece there's a tree that represents the Benevento Walnut Tree. This magical tree was said to be a gathering place for Italian witches. It's roots reached down to the other world and the witches would draw up its power by dancing around the trunk. Nyx was one of the goddesses venerated at the tree.

Nyx and the Benevento Walnut Tree - Nichola Battilana

There are also some tiny handmade paper poppies in there too, said to be sacred to her.

Nyx and the Benevento Walnut Tree - Nichola Battilana

That little glass bauble? A piece made by my friend and glass artist Marc Bourdon.

When I completed this doodad I slipped outside, into the dark. Despite the sky being covered in clouds, I saw a shooting star whiz by. I'm going to take that as a good omen. Maybe even a wink of approval! And I think I'll keep this piece with me for a while.

The materials for this piece are from all over the place but I'll do my best to list what I can.

Wooden House Frame - from Michaels
Wing Assortment
Small Wings
Bronze Hand CharmFloral Border Sticks
Flourishes 2
Adhesive back pearls
Metal Filigree
Metal Wings
Florist Wire
Old paper
Acrylic paint
Woodland Scenics Clump Foliage
Glass bauble - glass artist Marc Bourdon

P.S. If you're interested in learning more about this sort of thing, goddesses, spirits and the like, Judika Illes' book 'Encyclopedia of Spirits' might be just the resource you're looking for.

Thursday, August 25, 2016

Rain, toadstools and a WIP

We've had a spot of rain here and the lawn is becoming green and lush once again. Good thing too because the crispy crunchy brown expanse was not doing a thing for me. All the rain has also brought our faeires out of hiding. They've been dancing across through the garden and leaving toadstools in their footsteps.

The one below is called an Earthstar. They are some of my favourites. From wikipedia "The Blackfoot of North America called the fungus "fallen stars", considering them to be stars fallen to the earth during supernatural events" I love seeing them sprout each year near the tire swing, and am always certain they are an omen of something good.

Even the old mushy things are lovely in their own way.

Despite my lack of posts I have been working. Lately I find myself prepping items and then becoming stumped. There's a log jam of ideas trying to get out... but not a heck of a lot is flowing through. That said, this appeared on my table yesterday....

Which got a slap of paint and turned into this last night...

And I *think* I know what it is, but we'll see where the making takes me today.

Hope you're feeling beautiful today...  because you are. Truly.

Saturday, July 23, 2016

Imaginary Boyfriend - Joseph Gilgun Edition

This is all Ramsay Bolton's fault.

A couple of weeks ago I started watching Misfits because someone said Ramsay Bolton was in it, and, in fact, very sweet. I was sure that could not possibly be true. That bastard?! No way. But it IS true! Iwan Rheon is great and I didn't feel an ounce of loathing toward his character Barry Simon. (Acting!) I was hooked and binged all five seasons.

At some point in the series, this vulgar, childish character is introduced and you really just sort of roll your eyes and don't want to like him but he says something outlandish and swears in all the right places and he has tattoos on his bottom and his voice sort of cracks when he's emotional and before you know it you're smitten and have a new imaginary boyfriend covered in doodles.

Then it's all things 'This is England'... then 'Preacher'... then naturally a crafty ode to Joseph Gilgun just sort of happened.

Miniature fan girl locker - Joe Gilgun / Rudy Wade / Misfit / Preacher/ Cassidy Edition - Nichola Battilana

I had toyed with the idea of making a Preacher church but I recently mentioned needing a locker to house my ridiculous, and with a locker room being a major part of the Misfits set, creating a mini-mash-up shrine seemed just the thing.

Miniature fan girl locker - Joe Gilgun / Rudy Wade / Misfit / Preacher/ Cassidy Edition - Nichola Battilana

The locker is made from thick card, glue and paint. Shock of shocks, it's in actual 1:12 scale, measuring 7" tall x 1.25" x 1.25". The hinges are just cardboard with extremely small brass dots as grommets. Note: If I can figure out a good hinge system I'll post a tutorial so you can go a little loopy making a locker shrine too.

Miniature fan girl locker - Joe Gilgun / Rudy Wade / Misfit / Preacher/ Cassidy Edition - Nichola Battilana

I read an interview in which Joe said he liked watching Time Team so there's that logo on the side. The locker number is the same that appears on his character Rudy's forehead, indicating how many sexual partners he has had (yeah, I know)

Miniature fan girl locker - Joe Gilgun / Rudy Wade / Misfit / Preacher/ Cassidy Edition - Nichola Battilana

Inside the locker are photos of the man himself *swoon* and a penis doodle on the door for good measure.

Miniature fan girl locker - Joe Gilgun / Rudy Wade / Misfit / Preacher/ Cassidy Edition - Nichola Battilana

Misfit references include: orange community service jumpsuit, 'Men are from Mars, Women Love Penis' misquote book, Curly Wurly bars, Cornetto wrappers, a computer science certificate, movie posters for ET and Face Off. 

Miniature fan girl locker - Joe Gilgun / Rudy Wade / Misfit / Preacher/ Cassidy Edition - Nichola Battilana

The 'Men are from Mars' book has a new author, Rudy Wade. Yes, the book opens, but the pages are non-sense.

Joe is in the new show Preacher (which is pretty dang good btw) and there's a bottle of Ratwater Whiskey, an umbrella, and a brown paper bag that probably contains very naughty things, in reference to his character Cassidy.
Miniature fan girl locker - Joe Gilgun / Rudy Wade / Misfit / Preacher/ Cassidy Edition - Nichola Battilana

There are a few accessories I'll add later as a nod to This is England, in addition to the photo and "Lol" written on the door. I'd really like to include a pair of miniature Dr. Martens. I remember my first pair of Doc's. I slept in them the day I bought them. My family was certain I'd wear them down the aisle when I got married. I almost did!

Miniature fan girl locker - Joe Gilgun / Rudy Wade / Misfit / Preacher/ Cassidy Edition - Nichola Battilana

And there you have it! Once again I have lost my ever loving mind, jumped off the deep end, danced a jig and embraced my inner fan girl. Clearly the adoration of a funny, foul mouthed, Englishman, trumps all good sense and housework.

Miniature fan girl locker - Joe Gilgun / Rudy Wade / Misfit / Preacher/ Cassidy Edition - Nichola Battilana

I have been in the studio prepping all sorts of work, tinkering away, waiting for ideas to gel and feeling a little disjointed lately. So, even though this is a bit silly and ridiculous, getting exited about something (anything!) and completing a project has been invigorating and whole lot of fun.

If you ask me, we should celebrate the things we love a little more often.

P.S. Hope you're safe and well and having a splendid day. Here's a big fat hug and a sloppy kiss from me to you XO

Friday, July 01, 2016

Under the Sea Matchbox Shrine

Some people have sea water in their blood. They love the sea like I love the moon. While those waters may not run quite so deeply for me, I appreciate the beauty of the barnacled. For Alpha Stamps this month I've made a matchbox shrine full of texture and unwater colours.

The base of this piece is a Tiny Matchbox Theatre. I do love theatres (and an underwater one would be amazing!) but instead chose to make mine into a sort of underwater pocket shrine.

Now about that texture! I've glued pieces of a 6x6 Gears Texture Sheet to the surface of the box and splashed and sploshed paint and gesso and whatever else was on hand. I also layered some Seashell Sequin Mix which give a sort of wonderful fish scale texture. The sentiment on the front is from Voyage Beneath the Sea - Steampunk Splash Scrapbook Paper which I've simply tinted to match the colour of my box. A Brass Patina Seahorse Charm* and Conch Shell Charms* then a dash of crusty glitter (because why not) and the front is complete.

Inside I've used an image from the Mermaid Garden #3 Collage Sheet. He was a sort of surprise... I wasn't thinking of this sort of interior at all... but he fit so well and seemed quite at home in his sparkly cove of Coral Chipboard.

Wednesday, June 08, 2016

Venus' Grotto

This little grotto has been sitting in limbo since just before Christmas! I received the Half Scale Arch Front Room Box from AlphaStamps, promptly covered it in Tim Holtz Wallflower and vintage papers, added Pink Paper Roses and Asparagus Fern Garland... and then it sat.

Venus' Grotto - Nichola Battilana for

I was waiting for the perfect little thing to place inside my grotto. I tried my little figure of
St. Expeditus but he wasn't quite happy in there. I bought a beautiful little Madonna statue, Our Lady of the Cape to be specific, but her crown wouldn't let her fit inside.

Venus' Grotto - Nichola Battilana for

But it this little grotto wasn't meant for a saint after all... it was meant for a little Venus de Milo!

Venus' Grotto - Nichola Battilana for

And the little space seems a fitting shrine for the goddess of love and beauty. A smidgen of space to dedicate to prettiness. The original Venus de Milo (or Aphrodite of Milos as is her proper name!) was actually discovered burried in a niche, so I'd like to think she's happy to be tucked in her little arched shrine box.
Venus' Grotto - Nichola Battilana for

Want a slice of beauty to sit on your own shelf? Here's the supplies I used to create this piece:

Half Scale Arch Front Room Box
White Resin Column Set
2.5 Inch Venus Statue
Silicone Mold - Architectural Flourishes*
Creative Paperclay*
Asparagus Fern Garland*
Fern Garland*
1/2 Inch Pale Pink Paper Roses*
Flower Soft - Sweet Pea
Rectangular White Shelf Brackets - Set of 2
Tim Holtz Wallflower 12" pad

Wednesday, May 18, 2016

Looking Glass Mini-Shrine with Faux Plaster Tute

I've created two "Alice" projects for this month. First there was Alice's Altoid Manor House and now a second little tin shrine inspired by the mirror that inspired Lewis Caroll to write "Through the Looking Glass". If you peek to that link, you'll see they look nothing alike, but it's that lovely old ornamentation I was after, not really replication.

The base of this piece uses one half of a Small Hinged Tin and one panel of this Small Altoids Tins Triptych FrameIt's quite small, with the base tin measuring just 2-1/2" tall.

Inside is filled with moss and Mini Rose Buds with some sweet Flower Soft blossoms.

While I am usually all about tiny floral elements, it's the fake plaster details that are my favourite this time around. Can you guess what they are made from? Hot glue!

Normally I'd make these elements with Creative Paperclay but I was feeling impatient. Some leafy silicone molds, hot glue, layers of gesso and white paint, and voila! Held side by side with resin, you can't tell the difference, and adding additional layers of gesso and paint softens the details and makes it look quite like plaster.

AND because I love you (and Leslie asked so nicely) I've made a video of that technique HERE.

Just look at this plastic frame with 'faux plaster' leaf embellishments! I can't wait to see what you make with them :)

Supply round up:
Small Hinged Tin
Small Altoids Tins Triptych Frame
Large Leaves Silicone Mold*
Multi-Sizes Leaves Silicone Mold*
Flower Soft - Sweet Pea
Mini Rose Buds - Red*
Pink Rose Garland* (leaves)
Small Round Silver-Plated Pendants (not shown, applied to back of shrine for hanging)
Hot glue!
Gesso and white acrylic craft paint

Friday, November 06, 2015

Winter Shrine Tutorial

First Friday of the month! That means a tutorial for a glittery magical something for Jack Frost and the holiday season are on the way but there's loads of time before the holiday madness to get your supplies for this super cute project. 

This snowy winter wonderland shrine was created using Gina's House Shrine Box. I really and truly love that little shrine house. It's such a great piece to apply your own style to. 

Below you can just peek at the roof texture. This is achieved by layering pieces from the Cardstock Doily Set Intricates. The result is really cool and I show exactly how to do it in the video tutorial that goes along with this project.

The shrine is embellished with pieces from the Snowflake Shape Set. They've been painted and glitterfied and look oh, so sweet. Alternatively, you could use the Winter Shape Set which also includes snowmen, icicles and other wintry icons.

Inside my wee shrine I've added some bottle brush trees and a carpet of moss. Fill that space with whatever you like! A little Santa figure or snow capped house would be adorable. 

Being a total glitter fiend, I used a lot of the sparkly stuff on this project. Feel free to leave it out if you like, but I think that it adds and special icy touch. You might think that white glitter would be ideal for a winter landscape, but I recommend using clear glitter for a snowy look. 

What do you say? Want to make your own? You can find the full video tutorial HERE.

And here are all the supplies you'll need:

Wallflower 12x12 Paper Stash (or paper of choice)
Clear glitter
Light blue ultra fine glitter
White acrylic paint
A piece of foam
Bottle brush trees

*Note: the shrine box used in the tutorial is slightly larger than the one listed on the Gina's site. If you really, really, really, truly, must have the bigger version, please contact Gina's for pricing.