Keeping My Cheap Cheery Self Honest

You know I’ve posted about various projects, many of them with an Easter conclusion, and I want to show that this isn’t my Holiday Fantasy World. I did all this stuff with results ranging from laughable to others that, well, if not perfect provided some cheap fun and some cheerful results.

Remember my fantasy of the heart-shaped lawn bedecked with hard boiled quail drops and Scylla? Here:

Be prepared to hold your sides and honk in derision. I didn’t have enough seeds from that open package. That’s my story. Sere as my crop was, you can see that the cats enjoyed it.

I think I can call this an unqualified failure. Oh well.

Moving on: papier mache eggs formed over balloons, a la Martha Stewart. Ah di me!  This was not easy, mes amis. Getting the newspaper strips soaked in the correct amount of glue and water, learning as I went the best width of the strips and the neatest patterns for applying those strips. The Takeaway: I learned a lot about gluing paper over balloons. Here is my hopeful post:

And here are the results. I kind of love them. I got to dig out my ancient Easter chicks from the back of the hutch, and a sample of my collection of pie birds.

Here’s the big egg. I was gonna dump it because I’d only had time for two layers of papier mache and it wasn’t firm. But stuffed with newspaper and Easter grass, and cheered up with a few chicks…

Here’s the smaller and more technically accomplished egg — thicker, firmer and altogether harder. I painted the interior pink. Duh — if I’d really read Ms. Stewart I would have known to apply a first layer of pink paper.

So here’s the total tablescape view. The prettiest part is, of course, the flowers I gathered from my garden. I’m inclined to declare this bouquet Free — I planted the bulbs fifteen years ago.

Tomorrow it will be ham, Jacques Pepin’s divine potatoes gratin, asparagus and Pavlova with fresh berries. And , in case you’re wondering, I did keep the faith with the visual diary:

I need to buy a new color cartridge for my printer, spend a few hours primping the photos, and sometime soon I’ll come honest with you about this project.



Filed under About a buck, Art, Growing things, Holidays, Home, Paper

5 responses to “Keeping My Cheap Cheery Self Honest

  1. Hi there.
    Great job with your eggs. (And nice blog. I love the sentiment.) Next time you do paper mache, whether on balloons or anything else, put only your hands in the paste. Never the paper. You described what happens when you put the paper in the paste. The paper starts to fall apart. Then it gets difficult to spread the paste evenly. Globs of paste gets caught between layers (along with air bubbles). All this makes it less strong and takes forever to dry (and might stink later). Your wet hands will thoroughly soak the paper. And when you use only your hands you squeeze out the excess paste and air bubbles. The mache dries faster is is very hard and light.
    I have some instructional videos to help with this if you are interested.

    Nice work though.

  2. Welcome Dan, and thanks for your expertise. I am heading immediately to your blog!

  3. Well, you always learn your first time. And it looks like you found an expert (hi, Dan) to help you out! I definitely think you should start a papier mache moment! Those eggs are cute already – I’m sure you can perfect them! What about sea shells?

    How was dinner? I made Jacques’s pressure cooker lamb and white bean stew (over couscous). It’s so easy and the lamb made it eastery (and to my surprise, Hana loved it.) Also a fancy greekish salad. The piece de resistance was a four layer coconut cake that I made from scratch (courtesy of Cook’s Illustrated) and decorated with Peeps (yellow chicks, pink bunnies).

    I bought some daffodils at the grocery store – I wish I had your beautiful flowers. They truly are a lovely! So impressed that they come back year after year.

  4. BTW, Dan’s the Man in papier mache! Check out his site — I’m honored he dropped by here.

    Frites: Dinner was great, but nowhere in your Mediterranean Easter league. The menu sounds amazing, and I sure hope someone took a pic of that cake!

  5. Kim Shook

    I printed out Martha’s directions for the eggs and might try them sometime – with Dan’s suggestions! I love all of Martha’s stuff, but I’m usually too exhausted just READING the directions to actually TRY the projects!

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