Sunday, October 19, 2014

Spooky Skeleton Shadow Box ~ Autumn Magic with Anything But a Card

The current challenge over at Anything But a Card is a seasonal one; you can choose between "Autumn Magic" and "Spring Wonder".  Since fall is my very favorite time of year, with my very favorite holiday smack in the middle of the season, I chose to work with "Autumn Magic".  What is more magical than Halloween?  How about a skeleton in a cemetery? OK, so not exactly magical, but I had so much fun making my Skeleton Cemetery Shadow Box that I had to share it!
The cool stand with the skeleton heads isn't part of the box - but it's awesome isn't it?
What I used to Make this Project:
Tim Holtz Configurations Box - 5 3/4 x 5 3/4, TH92883
Big Shot machine
Tim Holtz Mover & Shakers Die, Vintage Cabinet Card Mini, 657206
Scraps of Grey (various shades) & White cardstock
Scrap of Chipboard
Skeleton (Dollar Store)
Wendy Vecchi Archival Ink in Potting Soil
Somerset Studio paper "Dark Woods"
Distress Paint in Gatherd Twigs
Tim Holtz Mover & Shakers Die, Mini Bat & Skull Set, 657458
Pumpkins (I got mine from Alpha Stamps)
2 Small Red Gems
Dresden "Arch" - black
Crafters Pick The Ultimate Glue

Almost looks like wood
First, take all the little boxes out of the configuration box and set aside. You won't be needing them now but won't they make cute Holiday Ornaments?  Then paint your box with Distress Paint in Gathered Twigs, I just used the sponge dauber on the bottle and rubbed it all over the box, both inside and out.  I took the Somerset Studio paper and cut  it to size so it would fit in the box, covering the back wall and the sides.    

The Mini Cab Card Die
I discovered the tombstones by messing about with the Mini Vintage Cabinet Card die.  I noticed if you trim down the sides of the die cut you can make some pretty cool tombstones.  So that is what I did.  I actually made 3 to use, but I ended up using only 2.  The white stone was to be my focal point because the skeleton fit nicely behind it.  I made the tombstone names in Word and printed them on cardstock and trimmed them to size, as well as the
other shade of grey I used behind the names (in case you can't read them, the white tombstone says  "Eve L. Minion" and the grey reads "Reid N. Weep").  I also drew some cracks into the grey tombstone using a Micron Pen and aged the white one using Wendy Vecchi's Potting Soil ink (truthfully, I wanted the white one to stay white, but I got a bit of the Gathered Twigs paint on it after it was all ready to go and there was no way I was making another one. Don't tell anyone).

Next I fixed the tombstones so they'd be sturdy enough not to bend.  I had already cut them out of cardstock, and I considered re-cutting them out of chipboard, but then I decided to make chipboard "brackets" to glue on the back of them that would be fine.  At the bottom of each tombstone I bent a small lip and attached the bent strip of chipboard to the back of the stone so the
bottom was a longer lip (and stronger) part of the chipboard was available to glue to the scene (picture a long L made of chipboard). Shockingly, it worked like a charm! No one was going to be poking or touching the stones, so they didn't need to be seriously anchored down.  Next was attaching the skeleton to the white tombstone.

 Since the skeleton was too tall, I snapped his legs off and daubed him with the Gathered Twigs paint to age him a bit more. I really wanted to get some dirt and roll him in that but I wasn't about to go out in the freezing cold yard and try to dig some up - plus it was late (after midnight) and we have a sensor light in the back of the house.  So I settled for some Gathered Twigs paint and dried him with my heat gun (the paint didn't really dry on the plastic, so be careful! You don't want a situation like I had above).  I also glued some little red gems in his eyes, reminiscent of the skeleton I used here.  I draped him behind the tombstone and set him up to dry overnight.

I already had the bat cut out - it was cut out of chipboard and painted black with acrylic paint.  The pumpkins, black cat, cameo and leaves are from my stash. I do have to tell you about these leaves. I am not sure where I bought them, but they were made for people who make those elaborate railroad displays and this bag has lasted me many, many seasons.  The Dresden arch came from a sheet I had gotten many, many moons ago.  I was tempted to hang a Happy Halloween" banner of some sort on the bottom of the box, but, after consideration (and the fact that somebody wants to display it all year long in his room) I decided to leave it off.

And another look.  Hope you enjoyed the tutorial!
So there we go - my first ever Configurations box! I have been pinning them and drooling over how amazingly creative people have been using them, but I haven't had the occasion to actually use one (and I have a few more in the stash).  I had a blast making it and the weight is so light compared to wood.  And, as I said, those little divider boxes that I didn't use will make cute ornaments, in fact, the top and the acrylic cover will make a nice frame. . .hmmm.  Better go write this down!   There is still time to enter the "Autumn Magic/Spring Wonder" challenge at Anything But a Card - even if you don't want to enter, pop over and check out the amazing creations my teamies have made.  We recently had a DT call and now we have so many creative people on board that you will want to check the blog at least once a week - trust me! Have a great day and thank you so much for stopping by.  If not for you. my followers, I would have no reason to do this.  Blessings to you & yours, Christi 

I am happily entering my Spooky Skeleton Shadow Box in the following challenges:
Delicious Darkness - #3 (October Challenge), Anything Goes, optional Halloween Twist
Buckwells Crafty Challenge - #1 (October Challenge), Anything Goes 
Altered Eclectics - (October Challenge), Anything Goes
Crafting at the Weekend - #6, (October Challenge), Anything Goes
Stuck on U Sketches - Die Cut Challenge, Anything Autumn
Open Minded Crafting Fun - #21, Pumpkins/Jack 'O Lanterns
Punk You Girl - (October Challenge), Anything Goes with an optional Halloween Twist

On another note, we are looking for some help over at Challenges for Days - it's really simple to help us keep the lists updated, you only need about an hour a week.  Why not help others (and yourself) find some awesome challenges to enter? If you think you can help us out, please drop an email to our wonderful founder, Zoe (  Even if you can't help right now, please take a look at all the exciting challenges we have listed and don't forget to bookmark us - we update the list daily and we are always adding new challenges!

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