Have you ever altered a bottle? I just finished my first one: it's for a Bird Song 4 swap.
It's a raffle drawing-style swap so who ends up with it is anyone's guess!
I decided to stick with a low-color palette this time and it was an adventure from start to finish.
First I had to find an old bottle. Bottles are not something (believe it or not) I collect, so finding just the right one was a challenge. I finally found a true vintage one at a street market a few weeks ago.
I chose this one because if has a rather flat front that I knew would take well to altering, as well as some interest in the ribbing on the reverse, above.
The hardest part for me was figuring out a stopper or cork for the bottle. I actually bought some glass bottle stoppers online from an Etsy vintage seller but neither fit in the bottle I'd found. Since I was pretty attached to the bottle, plan B was to make my own.
I fashioned the bird's nest from silver 'angel hair' that I glued to the top of a cork.
Then, I hand sewed some eyelash yarn through the nest to give it some nest-like texture.
The sweet bird on top was part of a raffle gift I won from one of Karla's past events.
I love the thought of it returning to roost at another one.
The blingy gimp style velvet fabric around the bottle's neck is also something I got at a past Birdsong, from vendor night. Below the neck, I added a beautiful old piece of costume jewelry that looks like rhinestones, and some of my favorite tatted lace.
The bird image I used was a free download from my ueber-talented blogging friend, Viola; here's a link to the actual download at her blog. As you can see, I lightened it up considerably by dry brushing white paint over it and then using different pens to add shadow and outline.
I used some of my favorite vintage white pieces to embellish the area above the egg: spun cotton, beaded wire, etc.
I decided I loved both the weight and the soft look of mother-of-pearl buttons, so I filled the bottle part way with some of those vintage 'gems' for an extra bit of beauty.
Finally, I tied some vintage baubles around the neck for balance: an old key, some beads and buttons, old lace threaded through a pearl, and a wooden feather.
How gorgeous is that old metal button?
Next I'll have to wrap it prettily, take it with me to Kansas, and let it fly away with someone new after the event.
I bought another beautiful bottle at the same street market, so I definitely see more in my future.
Countdown to Birdsong 4: about 11 more days.
Yes, I'm working hard on my swaps.