Sunday 29 March 2015

"Reef in a Box"

Servus and welcome to a rather colourful post on a rather grey in grey day (at least over here in Vienna).

I had this small wooden box lying around in my studio for quite some time now - waiting for the right idea to come along. I am a hoarder of boxes....all waiting for that inspirational spark to hit my brain so they can be transformed into something new and full of wonders.

When I was tidying up my desk and also sorting some of my rather unorganized boxes with loads of tiny bits 'n bobs in them yesterday, I stumbled upon three wonderful shiny red glass beads in the shape of fish (which I had also been hoarding for ages). Then there was this stack of Gelli prints sitting on my desk too....and all three together suddenly totally made sense: they had to become a tiny "reef in a box" to play with (or simply to look at and take you on a short (and completely dry) snorkeling trip!

I used some wire to put the fish on so they could be moved sideways and change position.

The background was a Gelli print I cut to size and glued to the inside of my box using DecoArt matte Decou-Page. The sea plants and corals were die cut and painted, some of them also were treated with DecoArt clear Crackle Glaze and Antiquing Creams to add some texture. The reef they're sitting on was torn from designer paper.

The outsides of the wooden box were painted with DecoArt Americana Chalky Finish paint "treasure" and Americana acrylic paint "Citron Green".

The words were written by hand onto a scrap from the Gelli print I had used for the insides, cut out and simply glued to the top.

By pulling or pushing the wire ends, which I bent into small loops, you can move the fish towards the sides. That makes it a bit more playful and "interactive". I like art that invites the beholder to play with it and change it to ones own liking.

I tried to keep the shapes, colours and textures rather simple and reduced this time, so the focus would not be drawn too much from the "construction" and main theme of the box.

The feet it stands on were cut from a cork and painted with acrylic paint before I glued them to the bottom of my box. I hope you like my "reef in a box" and that it brings some brightness into a grey, rainy day.

Thanks for stopping by (and also for the comments you leave with me so regularly! These are highly appreciated and always make my day, you know?)!

Hugs and happy crafting,
Claudia xxx


  1. This is great, I love that you can play with the fish and move them about. Lots of fun.

  2. Oh this is soooo fun, Claudia!! I want to pull those pieces of wire and get those fishies swimming! I love them!! Good thing you were hoarding all of these pieces, because you wouldn't have been able to create this Fabulous reef scene without all of your sea-worthy treasures :) This could be the safest snorkeling experience I've ever had :) :) and I didn't have to worry about sharks!! :) Happy Sunday to you, Claudia!! XOXO-Shari

  3. What a super fun piece, love it.
    Amanda x

  4. Super, erzeugt definitiv Urlaubsfeeling und die Fischlein kann man sogar weiter schwimmen lassen, du hast dem Ganzen sozusagen Leben eingehaucht, geniale Idee!!! LG Kerstin xx

  5. Hello Claudis,
    This reef looks fabulous, and I love that you have made it interactive.

  6. this is so wonderful and fun! I love it.

  7. Love it Claudia!! I am a collector of boxes too :)

  8. Oh my gosh, this is just fantastic!! I can almost here the water trickling down the back like a little reef fountain that you would display in an art museum! LOVE IT!! hugs :)

  9. Hello Claudia! Your reef is beautiful and funny :) The colors give me energy! Beautiful, wavy print from Gelli Plate. Cool cracking paint on the corals! Wires to move the fish is a great idea! I love your box!!!
    Max :)

  10. Hi Claudia, this box is such fun and the fish have great character.
    Love it, Angela x

  11. fantastisch kann ich nur sagen, liebe claudia!

  12. Wow, awesome Claudia...not only that I love colours very much (funny, that I don`t like to create with colours or lets say I do not know how to use colours), but also love the idea with wire and fishes...just fantastic make (as always)!

  13. Großartige Idee!
    (Und wer kennt die Sache mit all den Schachtel und Kisten nicht :)?)


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