two collage art bottles

070710 009 ps

Sometimes, Jeff will finish taping a bottle and show it to me, and I will claim it all to myself---

070710 001 ps

meaning that from there on out, I will be the only one working on it, till it’s finished.

061410 017

Usually, we both apply all the necessary layers of glue, paint, finishes, sometimes paper, over the course of a week or more.

061410 013

Over lapping each other’s work…

061410 015 (several layers of watered down wood glue are applied before any more work is done)

even changing each other’s work,

062210 036 ps (after painting the bottles white, I added a bit of strong black tea to the last layer of finish)

we don’t seem to mind…usually.

062210 035 ps(photos were printed and cut to fit into the bare spaces on the bottle)

But these bottles were different to me, I’m not sure why, when he showed them to me I immediately blurted out, “these are mine; I want to finish these!”

070710 006 ps(the crackling happens on its own from applying acrylic paint over layers of wood glue)

Jeff laughed and said, “ok.”

070710 002 ps

They remained untouched, in our workroom, well…forever. (just about)

070710 012 ps

Jeff never said a word.

062610 129 ps

I had no ideas, really.

062610 135 ps

While they sat, I did my usual: I took a lot of photos of everything---

061310 016

like the royal poinciana blossoms I shot while visiting mama one day,…and blogged a bit, put up new items in our etsy shop, shipped out some vintage sheet music, old ads, one of our smallest bottles…. read, read, and read. I learned how to make my blog template wider over at the very helpful CoffeeShop blog.

070810 023
I spilt coffee on a white, ruffled, long, cotton skirt, which my daughter had left behind and had become a favorite of mine. I had been wearing it almost everyday. No bleach in the house, so I decided to tea stain it---why not?

061410 266 
I blogged a personally favorite post about the air traffic of passing butterflies, and find myself returning to these photos often…I can recall everything about that day.

070810 035captured flight art bottle  and  flamboyant flowers art bottle

And, before I realized, the two bottles were finished.

Sometimes, we are asked, “where do your ideas come from?”
And sometimes I have to answer, “inspiration happens.”

My wish is that it happens to you everyday.


  1. So simple..yet so beautiful. I love them!!

  2. I haven't done this type of art before but i love it. i wish i'd see more of this at the fair.

  3. Hi megs! That is very sweet; thank you. After reading about your craft adventures in your blog, I can easily imagine you trying this for yourself.

    Diana, it’s a delight to see you here. Thank you, so much, for stopping by. I love your photography and have really enjoyed leafing through your blog :)

  4. These are so beautiful! I love love love the photos peeking out from the openings. Also, adding tea to the finish = genius. Thank you for the dose of eye candy to start my day!

  5. Hi Diane! What a nice comment :) thank you. I wasn’t sure how the tea would work with the water-based varnish; I’m happy with look and glad I tried it. I have added fabric dye before, and that works really well also.

  6. Simply beautiful... what an organic story... with all its little twists and turns! The links that crept in (love the butterfly traffic), to the story of these bottles.