Audrey Pettit: Our new holiday line, Evergreen, is perfect for creating special handmade decor pieces. I love the traditional color palette in this collection that works so well for Christmas projects. Throw in a bit of the nontraditional with the addition of the soft blue, and you now have a combo that carries way beyond the holidays and well into winter.
Today I have a fun paper mache altered art snowman project and tutorial to share with you that would make a great holiday gift for you or a loved one, or a fun home decor accent to chase away the winter blues.
The base for my snowman is a chipboard box that I covered with two different prints from the Evergreen 6×6 Paper Pad. The top of the box was painted and inked, and once dry, I wrapped the box in satin ribbon to mimic a present. The chipboard box actually houses a small mini album, which I removed for this project. But I did cover one page of the mini with solid blue 6×6 paper and added it to the top using foam adhesive for dimension. That gives my sweet snowman his own little platform from which to shine.
And speaking of that snowman, he is a fun paper mache sculpture that I put together to dress up the top of my box. Here’s how.
First we need to create a body armature for our figurine. I’ve seen several ways of doing this, but I like to use tin foil. Tear off a big piece of foil, then squash it together into a barbell shape. If it’s not the right size, you can add additional tin foil over the top and continue working it until you have a basic shape. Wind a chenille stem around the center body of the snowman and let the ends go off to the sides. Clip off the excess with a wire cutter. Wrap a little more tin foil over the body to help keep the arms in place.
Tear lots of small strips of newspaper or scrap paper to use for the paper mache. I used kraft paper recycled from some packaging material. Then create a simple paper mache paste from flour and water. I used about half a cup of flour, then added water until I had the consistency of pancake batter.
Dip the paper strips into the paste, then apply all over the tinfoil armature. It may seem a little tricky to get that first layer of paper to stick to the foil, but keep working at it. It may help to cover the tin foil with masking tape first, however I didn’t have any so I skipped that part. Continue adding paper strips until you have a fairly thick coating all over, smoothing the strips as you work.
You can also use the paste mixture to smooth out any dips and dents, and to add facial details like cheeks or nose. I also added a light coat of paste over the chenille arms. Allow your paper mache sculpture to dry thoroughly, which may mean overnight.
When the snowman is completely dry, paint it with a base coat of creamy white acrylic paint. I combined ivory and white paints for an antique white finish.
Then add the facial features using pink, orange, brown, and black acrylic paint. I used a fine tipped paintbrush to apply the cheek and nose paint, and added the eye and mouth dots using the back end of the paintbrush dipped into paint. I like things on the shabby side, so once my paint was dry, I lightly sanded it to give a chippy appearance.
To finish off my snowman, I gave him a coat of clear crackle paint, and sprinkled mica glitter into the paint while it was still wet. In his hands is a fun banner I made by gluing some of the Evergreen chipboard letters to simple white string. And on his head is a silly cone hat made from rolled up 6×6 paper, hot glued to his head with some additional mica glitter. The pom pom on the top is actually from the Fresh Cut Pom Pom pack.
The final touch was adding a few Evergreen embellishments to the front of the box. Super fun and festive, right? I hope you enjoy!
BasicGrey Evergreen Collection:
6×6 Paper Pad
Printed Chipboard Shapes
Printed Chipboard Alpha
BasicGrey Fresh Cut Collection:
Box: 3″ Vintage Memory Box w/ Coaster Album by Maya Road Photo Corners, Adhesive: Therm O Web
Trim: Craft Supply
Mica Glitter: Stampendous
Paint: Plaid, Art Impressions