Thursday, October 20, 2011

Dreamweaver Free Week--Pandora's Box?

Alright, I am going to be completely honest. I absolutely LOVE working with metals on Dreamweaver Stencils. I adore it so much that I could easily and happily do metals for almost every post (alternating, of course, with all the variations of Double Glitter). It is SO addicting. I am really excited that I am going to be teaching classes in working with metals and stencils at a couple of different stores. Anyway, on to this week's post.
The Greek legend of Pandora says that Pandora was given a box (actually a jar) and told not to open it. Being a curious woman (I can relate), she opened the box and all the bad things in the world came pouring out. When it was hastily closed, the only thing that remained was Hope. I love this legend. It explores human nature, sure, but I love it because I have learned, the hard way, that when all else is truly lost, there is ALWAYS hope. Never give it up. In fact, the first time my mother had Sepsis, and we were told that she could never live, my cousin gave me one of those rubber bracelets that said "hope". I wore it, never taking it off, until my mother actually passed, several months later--months after RECOVERING from the Sepsis. It reminded me that hope is the one thing that can never be taken from you. You have to agree to give it up.
How do Greek legends and my personal experience relate to this project? Well, that image embossed image is the character for "Hope", LS 1008. Of course, the image is Chinese, I think. Hope has no native tongue, however, even if the Pandora legend does. The stencil I used was the small version of it. I placed the stencil face down on a hard, smooth surface. I then placed the red side of my colored aluminum on top of it. I used the Mercart Teflon Tool to press it down into the cut out parts. I removed the aluminum from the stencil, placed it face up on a hard surface, and refined it with that Teflon Tool. I flipped it back over and placed it on suede. I used the small Mercart "Ball" tool to push out the design. I once again flipped it right side up and refined it for the final time on a hard surface with that Teflon Tool. I filled the raised design with Mercart Filling Paste. After it was dry, I finished this part by sanding the raised portions to highlight them.
I had purchased this box for a dollar, yes, just a dollar, at Michaels. It was natural colored when I purchased it, so I painted it black. I then used the Koi Stencil LG 613, well, the edging of that stencil anyway, to deboss the metal for the edges. This was even easier than the embossing on the lid. I simply placed the stencil right side up on a hard surface and laid the red aluminum, also right side up, on top. I rubbed lightly with a blending stump over it so that I can tell where the edges were. I then used the tip of that Teflon Tool to press in all the details. I sanded it while the aluminum was still on the stencil. I removed it from the stencil and placed it on Double Sided Adhesive Paper to help me attach it to the box. I bent the aluminum over the edges where appropriate, and had to trim it just a little on the top corners. Then, I was done.
This project was SO much easier than it looks. It really was. If you haven't tried Metals with Dreamweaver Stencils, I encourage you to do so. Please--you won't regret it. If you are in the Michigan area, look up one of my classes. I will be teaching metals (not precisely this project) at Stamp Peddler in Northville, My Craft Room in Troy, Capture A Memory in Flint, and Altered Art Addicts in Jackson. Check their calendars online for dates. As a reminder, EVERY one of these classes has different projects, so check the photos and find out which class interests you the most.
So, what do you think about this project? Leave a message and let me know. I had so much fun making it. I find it very appropriate to October, breast cancer month. It was breast cancer that taught me one very important lesson: even if things look bleak, it is hope that remains in the box, and hope that remains in your heart.
Until next week, I hope you are inspired!


  1. I have seen this little box up close and personal and it is amazing Laura that you have built this up with the metals...just amazing!

  2. Laura, you have the patience of a saint. The detail is so intricate and so beautiful.

  3. BEAUTIFUL sure ROCK those metals!!

  4. WOW Laura what you can do with metal, is so inspiring. I wish I waas closer to you so I could take some of your classes. I love the intricate detail on the side of the box it really sets off the Hope in the middle.

  5. Another beautiful project Laura, you do such beautiful work! I love reading your thoughts about each project too.

  6. What a great project. Loved the story to go with it.

  7. this is awesome miss Laura! LOVE IT