The making of Susan's Halloween present - part two

The making of Susan's Halloween present - part one

I saw Jill Castoral's quarter scale Haunted Cottage Kit at the Bishop Show last April.  I immediately thought of it as a candidate for Susan's Halloween present, but already had an antique convex glass frame I wanted to do something with.  I couldn't stop thinking about the haunted cottage, and after my brain cleverly combined the kit with the frame I purchased the kit online.   I decided to make an old spooky cottage deep in the woods, with creepy trees...where an old herbalist might live....whooooo.....





(it almost killed me to set the porch opening off center, I'm a symmetrical gal, but Susan prefers asymmetry...looking at it now still makes me uneasy)



You'll notice that the cottage did not agree to be spooky.  I tried to creepify it a few times, but it just wouldn't work.  Once I surrendered to the cottage the work became easy and fun; I told Susan this year she was getting something pretty.   It wasn't until a couple of weeks past this point when I realized I had subconsciously copied the Hansel and Gretel cottage in Carmel, most likely due to the similarities in the architecture.

I love the stone chimney that came with the kit.  I wanted to make a stone wall and foundation but knew I'd never be able to match the chimney, so I emailed Jill Castoral to ask if I could make a mold of sections of the chimney to cast a stone wall with.  She and Pat not only granted permission but thought it was a brilliant idea and gave me some molding and casting tips.  Thank you both, the project wouldn't have been the same without your kindness.

Next post...the setting....



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I am just in love with it, carrying it around my house like a baby, looking for the perfect spot to hang it!

It will stay up year-round, so I'm glad it's not any more "Halloweeny" than it is, with it's "deep in the dark woods" kind of vibe. It's much more mysterious, yet welcoming and inviting, than the photos are able to show.
I have to find the perfect spot for it, where no one can come in the house without noticing it.

This is an amazing amount of work to put into something, and I feel very blessed to have a best friend who will not only put up with all of my grumpy grouchy crap (and my passion for asymmetry), but ignores my bad side and makes me something so beautiful!

Lol - do you also have photos to show the Cherry Heaven you sent? I am already planning some pork chops grilled with cherry bbq sauce for dinner!
If I'm not too full of cherry sours and other cherry goodies.

You ARE the best!!


I briefly contemplated decorating the house for Halloween with Jack-O-Lanterns, corn stalks, etc, but it just didn't feel it would cheapened the piece in some way, if you know what I mean. I'm so glad now I didn't.

I did remember, at the last minute, to take a picture of Cherry Wonderfulness, but I haven't downloaded it yet. I'll post that pic tomorrow. you don't also put up with my grouchiness and listen to me complain about my stinky fart problems. That's what Besties do! Love you!


Lol - love you, too!! If people only knew how much we really talk and how much we make each other laugh...

And yes, I do know what you mean about forcing Halloween into it.
It has a life of its own and I'm sure the wee herbalist inside directed you with how to decorate her home and what she would and wouldn't tolerate.

The Paris cemetery has this kind of life, too, without being the least bit restricted to Halloween. Some places just have the feel of mystery without being scary, with almost being comforting, instead, and you're an artist to be able to make those places in miniature!

I am laying Cherry Heaven out on the counter for Rotten to feast his eyes on when he walks in the door.
He just finished his cherries from last year, and is always thrilled at this time of year because you always send very healthy goodies that he loves to cook with.

You should show the fabric, and the little cherry box lid with the old labels.
And the soap - handmade cherry soap that smells crazy good!!
And my ring, and... and... I need to go play with it all again!!

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