My Deer Friend

Have you see those awesome white resin deer heads you can buy to adorn your walls? I love them but I hate the price tag. I don’t mind investing in pieces for the home that are going to be with us for a long time but I don’t know if my love of a white mounted deer head is going to last long enough to justify paying over $100. So of course, I thought of ways to get out of paying that much.

I considered making one out of paper mache or clay but then I found this little guy on ebay for about $25. So here is a quick version of a white deer head that was far less involved and seriously cheaper than the store-bought versions.

I thought about glueing down all the fur with Mod Podge and then going over it with paper mache but just as I began to glue I had a light bulb moment and just ripped off all the fur from the plastic mold. I did feel a bit bad because it was real rabbit fur (eco-fur though) but the original version was creepy anyway.

He looked even creepier with no fur because the mold was black but after 3 coats of white spray paint I had myself a white deer head for the lounge room. And a bunch of gross rabbit fur. The antlers were covered in a kind of velvet coating (I’m not sure what it’s called) so they kind of absorbed the paint and just lightened up a bit but I’m still happy with the result. Up close it’s not smooth and perfect like a resin version but its high up on the wall so it suits me fine!

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Winter… a time of plenty


I mean plenty of cups of tea.

And what do you need when you have two couches, two bodies and only one coffee table? You need a little side table to hold said tea when the best couch real estate is taken. In our house, there are two competing properties on the couch market. Couch number one is our ‘original’ couch, located in a warm western corner of the lounge, this cosy (read: smaller) couch has excellent coffee table frontage with local reading lamp access and sweeping views of the television. Couch number two is a roomy 3-seater nestled between two bustling walk-ways (read: high traffic area) – a minimalist’s delight!

If you can decipher real estate talk then you can guess that couch number one is the cosy household favourite with the coffee table right in front and couch number two is a big lonely-feeling couch with nowhere to put a cup! Due to the freezing weather, and therefore extra couch time we’ve been having, I had to come up with a cup-friendly solution. On our last trip away Dave took me to Healesville where there seems to be one op-shop for every ten people. Awesome. In one of them I found an old brown laminate table that I think was originally part of a nested set of three. It was $5 and it had to come home with me to become my new tea table.

I had big plans for this table. Big plans of a Moroccan trellis pattern top in turquoise and antique white. I was so enthusiastic I made the entire pattern template from scratch (I don’t have a printer at home) but the whole thing just didn’t work. It happens. Not every project goes the way you want.

Luckily that morning I had picked up a can of gold spray paint and already painted the table legs with it so I scraped of the layers of paint (using my best kitchen pallet knife…whoops) from the table top and sprayed the whole thing gold instead. Then I Mod Podged a gorgeous vintage teacup I found at the Graphics Fairy (fastastic site with free vintage images) on top. I was so ‘done’ by the gold-painting stage that I didn’t sand off the paint from the doomed pattern experiment, I just sprayed right over it, but I actually like the slightly flawed look it gave the finished table top.

Turns out I like the gold teacup version better than the pattern anyway. So there.

Things you will need for this project

A table

Sandpaper

Electric sander (optional)

Primer (I actually just used white spray paint)

Gold spray paint

Printed and cut out image

Mod Podge (I used gloss)

Foam brush

Sealer (TBA)

If possible, remove the legs from the table top – I was lucky, mine just unscrewed. Sand the table top with the electric sander or sandpaper to rough up the surface. Clean with a damp cloth and allow to dry.

Sand the legs if they need it – mine had been attacked by a kitten or small child at some point so I had to sand out the teeth marks. Clean with a damp cloth and allow to dry.

Coat top and legs with one layer of primer or white spray paint and allow to dry. Coat with two coats of gold spray paint, allowing each layer to dry before the next.

Decide on the position of your picture and glue to table top using Mod Podge. Smooth out any air bubbles and then apply a layer of Mod Podge to the whole table top and allow to dry. Coat with two more coats of Mod Podge, allowing each layer to dry before the next.

Now, the only thing I haven’t done yet is coat the whole thing with some kind of sealer. I didn’t think this was necessary until a damp hot cup of tea seemed to stick a bit to the table. I’m using coasters until I go to the hardware shop and find the right sealer for the job – stay tuned!

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Eye Chart Art

My second project using my bargain frames (as seen in my previous post) is Eye Chart Art. At the moment there is a definite trend for typography as art, as well as medical/zoological/geographical (I don’t know what the kids are calling it) stuff. You know, skeletons, specimen displays, animals, science-y things, maps, pages and images from encyclopaedias and manuals, taxidermy. Stuff. I don’t know what a collection of this stuff is called but I see it everywhere. And I like it. I’ve seen vintage eye charts used as art and last week I stumbled onto this custom eye chart maker and played around with some wording. For us I chose a Jimi Hendrix quote “Knowledge speaks, but wisdom listens” (that I had to slightly alter because I only could only use a limited number of characters in the eye chart maker).

I also used the idea to make a housewarming present for some dear friends who moved into a little love nest together over the weekend. Posting about it kind of spoils the fun when I give it to them but whether they look genuinely surprised or not will tell me if they really read my blog…and whether I need to rethink their description of ‘dear friends’. Hmmmm.

For them I chose the title of a well know Madness song and the date they moved in. ‘Welcome to the House of Fun’ is a tribute to what is to come as I have no doubt many a fun night will be had in their new digs. In typical maddy style, once I had taken the photo I realised that the date is meant to be 120512 not 120520. I’m eight years too early. Perhaps I’ll just hold on to this and fingers crossed they move house in 2020. Or I might just print out a correct version but for the sake of not having to do it right now, it stays.

Once I generated the eye chart I saved it as a JPEG to my desktop and opened it up in Microsoft Paint (as you can see my use of technology is very sophisticated…) and used the eraser function to remove the URL that appears below the chart. This project took a whopping 10 minutes which consisted of 8 minutes to choose the wording, 1 minute to erase the URL and 1 minute to print it out and stick it in a frame. Such little effort for such a good result. My favourite kind of project!

To save you having to dust off Microsoft Paint, here is a JPEG of the Hendrix quote – enjoy!

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