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Mr. Bassell at Easter With SK

A tall French paper mache rabbit attired in his Sunday best dressed and ready for Easter.

We All Have that Friend...

Holly at Borei Designs causes trouble...I see what she is playing with and I immediately want to play too.

I saw her paper mache French chicken and voila. There I go again starting another project, before I finish the five semi-finished, And overdue projects sitting in the studio. Ah well. Here is her fun article address to peruse:

I sketched my idea out, but he just seemed to get bigger and bigger.
I began to wrap wire around a 1" wooden dowel. I screwed 1/4"x1" wood feet to the bottom of the dowel so he would stand sturdy.
As I wrapped the wire, I began to form his head, body and back legs. Pushing and prodding until I achieved the shape I was looking for. 

He then began to be stuffed with paper.
With Bassell stuffed and standing. I wrapped him in masking tape. Holly used white. Smart girl which she is. I had blue, so that's what I used. Not realizing the blue color would show through his thin paper skin. Duh!

Holy also used a clay ( Activa Celluclay) to cover her chicken. Another smart idea.

I skipped this step. I shouldn't have. It would have made Mr. Bassel too heavy for the size he was.(or so I thought)
Here's Holly's magic paper mache recipe and directions.
4. I whipped up a batch of paper mache paste and ripped up some newspaper in strips.  I then added a couple of layers of paper mache (paste-dipped) strips all over the body.  I dried it in the oven at 200 degrees Fahrenheit in between layers.  Drying in the oven helps speed up the drying time of paper mache paste.  Just make sure you don't "overcook" your project and check it every 15-20 minutes.  You can also use a hair dryer to help speed drying time.  Just make sure your project is completely dry before each new step.  
5 Parts Water
1 Part Flour
1-2 Tbs of Salt

Put 4 parts water into a pot on the stove and bring it to a boil. While you are waiting for it to boil, mix 1 part flour to 1 part warm water. Beat this mixture briskly to remove lumps. Once your pot of water is boiling, slowly stir in salt (helps to combat mold & mildew) along with water and flour mixture. Mix well and let it boil for 2 - 3 minutes, stirring constantly.  Mix to a gooey glue-like consistency.  Add more flour and/or water as needed to achieve desired consistency.  If you make more than you will use in one day, be sure to store excess in the fridge overnight.  When ready for reuse, heat and add additional water to thin and smooth if necessary.  
I then created funky arms and his little nose with twisted wet Papier-Mâché  (ooo la la. Must be French) and using wire attached his arms into place. I moved them a couple of times. I couldn't get them in a position that didn't look weird. I just kept positioning till they looked a bit more natural. I just used more paper to cover the wired points.

With a lighter polka dot tissue, I added a vest and the inside of his ears. With a long piece of folded paper, I created his stand-up collar. When the paper was dry, I cut his vests front points. The back of his vest is pleated.
Using wire to make his whiskers. I curled one end of the wire, then poked a hole through his nose and threaded the wires into place. Then cut them and curled the other side. A pretty teal striped cardstock made his bowtie. A little teal and diamond button holds his vest in it's proper place.

After he was completely dry, I sprayed him with a satin lacquer finish.

A little painted heart finished his attire for Easter Sunday.
He needs a SMILE! Ok, Ok. And don't forget to paint his eyes with a sparkle. Darn, now I have to go back and paint in the whites of his eyes.

Thanks for visiting.
SK on Elderberry

Materials used for this project:

  • Bailing wire   (Home store)
  • Tissue paper   (Hobby Lobby)
  • Paper Mache Glue   (Homemade)

To see more: http://sksartell.blogspot.com/2017/03/bassel-on-easter-with-sk.html

Ask the creator about this project

  • Cindy Jo
    Cindy Jo Prosper, TX
    on Mar 4, 2017

    He is just superb!!! Love him!

    • SK on Elderberry
      SK on Elderberry Bonners Ferry, ID
      on Mar 4, 2017

      Thank you Cindy Jo. I think he turned out pretty awesome despite the fact I've never worked with paper mache before. I'm making several more in different poses and heights. So I would imagine I will get better and eventually have something to crow about. I love learning. Thanks for visiting. SK on Elderberry sksartell.blogspot.com

  • A Crafty Mix - Michelle
    A Crafty Mix - Michelle South Africa
    on Mar 4, 2017

    He is adorable

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