Decoupaged Cigar Box
In the 70s and 80s I used to do decoupage for fun.
At that time, it was a time-consuming craft, requiring patience. The process of traditional decoupage was something like this:
- 1. Cut a design (original art or someone else's).
- 2. Paste it onto a new surface (which you might first paint or otherwise refinish).
- 3. Protect it with several coats of varnish or other protector.
- 4. Sand down the decoration after each 5 coats.
- 5. After about 15 coats of varnish, apply one last coat of protector.
The idea was to make the decoration appear to be flush with the surface.
Now I think most decoupeurs use one coat of Mod Podge and skip the sanding steps.
The Modigliani Box
Here is what I did to convert my grandfather's cigar box into a keepsake box which I gave to M for his birthday.
- First, I removed a couple of things from the interior which I'm guessing may have kept the cigars humid. The cedar wood was beautiful so I didn't want to paint it.
- Then I pasted a removable plate of Modigliani's "The Cello Player" (from a paperback about Modigliani) onto the top of the cigar box.
- The design goes over the box opening. I used a knife to slit the design at the place where the box opened. I wanted a smooth, unobtrusive opening.
- When you open the box, there's a surprise on the interior of the lid! I pasted a page of sheet music from a Mozart Sonatina. (M's favourite composer is Mozart.) I gave it to him for his birthday in 1977. I call it the Mozart Box; he calls it the Modigliani Box. When I moved into the house with him when we became engaged, he returned the box to me because he says it's a family heirloom. So we now share it!
- The interior is lined with blue velvet.