The seashell situation
It’s not for nothing that this beautiful summer cutout features seashells.
See, seashells hold a prominent place in our family’s crafting lore, which was probably the subliminal source for the craft idea.
When I was growing up (circa 1850 ), my mom used to get us empty used cigar boxes to decorate. (Raise your hand if you’re old enough to remember those!) My siblings and I would decorate the outside with seashells, and then paint them over with clear nail polish. Then we’d lovingly store our prizes inside. Ah, the blissful days of youth…
Ahem, excuse me, I’m getting sidetracked.
Back to the seashell covered-starfish cutout. It comes out absolutely beach-i-ful, and there are just four simple steps to it.
- Woodpeckers starfish cutout
- A pack of large craft seashells
- A pack of small filler seashells
- Aleene’s tacky glue
- Decoart Americana Pearlizing Medium
How to craft it
1. Paint the panel
Paint the starfish a neutral, background-type color and let the paint dry. I used a peachy beige which went perfectly with the seashells. As always, the easiest and best for wood cutouts is acrylic paint.
2. Place the pieces
Lay out the shells on the cutout, placing the larger ones in the middle and the long narrow ones on the arms. Important: don’t skip this step.It takes time, but it prevents those awkward, nothing-fits-here spaces. (For my fellow word geeks, this step gives your project visual coherence.)
3. Glue ‘em on!
Once you’ve glued the big and medium seashells, fill the remaining spaces with mini ones. My mix pack of shells actually came with tiny starfish (starfishes?). I was going to leave them out but they looked surprisingly cute and I ended up using a bunch. Can you spot them all?
4. Polish with pearl
Pearlizing medium is this very cool thing that adds a pearly glow so that the finished piece is positively dreamy.
The rest of the seashell story
In case you were wondering, the affinity for seashells was absolutely inherited by my children. They come home from the beach with bags of shells, and end up with a way bigger stash than they know what to do with. Eventually they get over their collection and donate it to the large seashell jar in my mom’s bathroom. So everything comes full circle. 😊
Happy beaching, crafting, and beach-themed crafting!
P.S. Does your family have a seashell story? Please do share!