I just finished a number of little home decor projects. Setting is everything for me. When it's time to paint or draw I've always had a need to be surrounded by things that bring me comfort as well as inspiration.
These bell jars were a really happy find. I love the idea of "specimens" and apocethary jars & test tubes. I found these with cast iron bases deeply discounted and snatched them up. The question became "What to put in them?"
I settled on a combination of antique books (which I've collected for as long as I can remember) and the skulls of various carnivores (the examples here are a racoon and a coyote). Add a little red moss ... toss in a skeleton key ... and they look like museum relics just waiting for rediscovery. I made sure to place them with candles and a glass encased jellyfish.
I took an old apple crate and repurposed it by painting and distressing the interior & exterior. Inside I placed a backdrop of "the sacred heart" (I'll never shake my obsession with catholic iconography and symbols) as well as a myriad of some of the strangest purchases I've ever made (but I proudly stand behind them). After buying a set of vintage apocethary jars on Etsy, I went to one of my most favorite shops in LA. They sell everything from antique taxidermy, to skeleton replicas, sea shells, victorian photographs, shadowboxes full of exotic insects and anything related to natural history. I filled the jars with an assortment of finds from the shop ... badger toes, baby starfish, princess fish, coyote canines, beetle wings, etc. Then, I labeled each jar with an "made to look antique" hang-tag ... using a flourishing script. I threw a shadowbox with an exotic butterfly and a large dried out starfish inside ... and *viola* ... ok, I'm not sure what it is exactly but I am sure it's awesome.
I have a few other projects ongoing ... but essentially, I'm injecting some inspiration into my creative environment. These things will make me feel at home ... and motivated.
p.s. This is quite possibly the most bizarre and amusing receipt I've ever gotten.