Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Ribbon Floral Shadowboxes - Something A Little Different

Many, many years ago I wanted to make something a little different than a doll.

I had been intrigued with ribbon florals since I had seen some of the absolutely stunning creations of some of my creative embroidery friends. I wanted to try making flowers out of ribbons. Not to be added to cloth, but used in some sort of floral arrangement.

While shopping at a local craft store with my mother I had come across a booth selling dried floral shadowbox pictures that contained a half basket and dried florals. The concept and colors were perfect for my half bath so I bought two.

Well, in thinking about creating something utilizing the ribbon florals I thought maybe a half basket filled with ribbon florals glued to a painted canvas panel and surrounded by a painted wooden shadowbox would fit the bill.

Of course, this also meant that hubby needed to make shadowbox frames for me to attach to the 8"x10" painted canvas. So, we talked about what I wanted to make and he suggested that we make shadowbox frames that would be routed to hold the canvas panel within the shadowbox and nail the frames to the sides of the canvas panels. I agreed so we started.

As with everything I do we had quite a few ribbon floral shadowboxes to make.

To start off I decided what colors I wanted to use for the frames and what colors I wanted to use for the canvas panel.  Once I knew what colors I wanted to use for each picture I then selected the ribbons (some wired, some not) that I wanted to use for each flower.

I also selected wider wired ribbons and wired paper to be used for a bow on top of the wicker baskets in each picture.  To all this I added some silk floral leaves that would serve as a back drop for the floral baskets.

We used 1/2"x2" pine boards to create the shadowbox frames and routed about 1/4" for the canvas panels to rest against. We assembled the frames and then sanded them.  As I wanted the frames to be different colors than the canvas panels I painted the frames and canvas panels separately and then when dry we nailed the frames to the sides of the canvas panel.  Then we added picture hangers to the top center back of each frame.

I cut the miniature wicker baskets I had chosen for each picture in half and spray painted them on the outside. I added a small amount of Spanish Moss to the inside of each and then glued a small rectangular block of floral foam to the inside of the baskets.  Then I glued my half baskets to their respective canvas panels in the center and about 1/4 of the way up.  After I was happy with the gluing and positioning of the baskets I added the silk leaves I wanted to use for each picture.

I then proceeded to create the ribbon flowers. I had several printouts from various magazines to help me with this and ended up making maybe 4 to 6 different styles of ribbon flowers in multiple colors. Nowadays there are so many wonderful books about ribbon crafts that you could spend all day just browsing through them.

Back to the story - for some of the flowers I added a tiny miniature ribbon floral to the center  in order to finish the center seed section. When the flowers were done I tied a floral pick to each of them and then inserted the pick into the floral foam of the basket.  I had to cut several of the wood stems of the floral picks to shorten them as they were too long for my foam block.

When I was happy with the arrangement of all the ribbon flowers I tied the larger wired ribbons and wired paper into bows and then glued them to the front of their respective baskets.

Both hubby and I were pleased with the way our ribbon floral shadowboxes had come out. They were a little different, but would make great gifts that holiday season. 

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