Sunday, October 14, 2012

Persistence in Spite of Cottage Cheese

If you’re like me, there are a couple of things that you’re always attracted to—colors, shapes, quotes, etc. No matter where you see them, they always catch your attention. For me, one of them is pumpkins.

Fall is my favorite time of the year, but I leave my pumpkins out all the time. So imagine how excited I was when I was in the Michael’s a few days ago and found medium-sized papier mache pumpkins for around $3.00 each. I grabbed two; one I altered for my daughter’s new house and one I did for me—gun metal gray. I wanted another one, but the Michael’s was out. So my brain got going—how was I going to satisfy this hunger for pumpkins?

Make my own.
I gathered my materials (i.e., a Dollar store foam pumpkin) and took pictures. I thought, “Hey, if this works out, I could share it with other people. Do a tutorial, maybe someone picks it up and puts it on Pinterest.” Really cool idea. And of course, I had to do it right away.

I greased up the pumpkin with petroleum jelly so that the paper would release when it was dry. I made the papier mache paste and started applying wet strips of a grocery paper bag to the pumpkin. It was a mess. I mean huge. At one point the pumpkin looked like it was covered in cottage cheese. Yep, it was gross. I tried to gently wipe it down. It looked better but I was still—well--bumpy.

I came back a few hours later and my worst fears came true. It was in the shape of a greasy, gross pumpkin.

Ok. Now what? I thought about rolling up paper to make an armature. That was a bust. Then I thought about tin foil. But I couldn’t get it to stick together to make the armature.

Then it hit me--cover the pumpkin with adhesive tin tape.

I got it to work, but it took a lot of time to get enough layers to make it strong enough to stand on its own. All I can say is that thank God pumpkins are not perfect and frequently bulbous on one side.

The moral of the story is that some things take a LOT of persistence. Even when one is confronted with a cottage cheese like mess (like so many things in life), one must press on.
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