Friday, 30 October 2009


I'm not that big into Halloween but I always welcome a chance to make some darker art and of course, Halloween is just the time of year to justify this.

I made this Memento Mori (Memory of the Dead) piece as part of one of the Alphastamps kits received because I'm a member of their Design Team. It was made quite some time ago, in September to be exact but I have kept it specially to show it during this time of year.

The piece features a vintage picture of a dead child from Victorian times. Of course many children died then as a result of poverty, poor hygiene and lack of antibiotics as well as no vaccinations, and it was considered quite normal to photograph them after death so that they could be remembered. This was also done for adults who had died. It is perhaps not quite what we find acceptable now although I don't really know why not. It did not hurt anyone and provided the only image of what was probably a much loved person. You can read more about this habit here and here.

Here are the instructions:

Start with a matchbox blank (available from Alphastamps) and paint all parts with white gesso and let this dry. Do the same with the inside of the box. Then add layers of black paint till no white shows through. You will have to let the various layers dry in between painting. Do this to the inside too. Finally using a sponge and gold acrylic paint, dot gold onto the black sparingly to give it an antique look.

Add together 3 layers of black batting (wadding in UK) using thinned PVA glue to hold the layers together and add a layer of red felt on top (from Alphastamps). Add the child image (from Alphastamps Sleeping Beauties collage sheet) by glueing onto the red felt. Sew on a piece of rosary chain (Alphastamps) with black thread through the layers of batting and felt. Also add a pink rose bead (Alphastamps).

Glue this whole ensemble to the inside of the matchbox with PVA glue. To the outside of the box add the square cross charm (Alphastamps) with another pink rose, using sewing as well as Diamond Glaze to be on the safe side.

Finally glue on the Dresden scrap black wings to the back of the match cover as shown.


Maggi said...

What an interesting project! I love the touches of red and pink!

Laura Haviland said...

This is a really cool project.
I love matchbox art !!
I like making paper doll with them too.
Thanks for sharing, Hugs Laura.


Related Posts with Thumbnails