Monday, April 01, 2019

Eileen Hull Birdie Darling Lighted Pedestal Birdhouse

That title was a mouth full! Happy April crafty people, and hopefully by now all of you are feeling Spring. Recently, Eileen Hull, announced that she has a new Educator Team in addition to her Inspiration Design Team. I am thrilled to be one of her Educators (Thanks Eileen!), and all that means is that I will be showing you (or teaching) new and different ways to use her Sizzix Dies through tutorials and classes. So today, I have a self step out tutorial for making this 'Birdie Darling Lighted Pedestal Robin Birdhouse', using four of Eileen's dies in a different way. I love using dies in ways they might not have been intended to's a challenge for me. It's a super long post so grab sustenance, and for those of you Eileen Hull lovers who are new here, I know it's a lot to see and read, but I relish the detail and the time it takes to create that. Hope you enjoy!
(Craft Sheet, Scissors, Die Cut Machine, Medium Paintbrush, Masking Tape, Crop-o-dile 1/4 Inch Corner Rounder and Punch, Pliers, Sanding Grip)
-Sizzix Eileen Hull Scoreboards XL Die: Cupcake Stand and Pennant, Trinket Box and Frame
-Sizzix Little Sizzles Mat Board: 6x13 Inch
-Ranger Adhesive Sheets
-Ranger Tim Holtz Distress Woodgrain Cardstock
-12x12 Scrap Cardstock
-Skor Tape: 1 Inch
-Ranger Tim Holtz Distress Collage Medium: Matte
-Tim Holtz Idea-ology: Aviary Collage Paper
-DecoArt Americana Decor Chalky Finish Paint
-Paper Artsy Fresco Finish Chalk Acrylics: Baltic Blue, Glacier Ice, Magic Moss, Mahogany, Zesty Zing, Terracotta, Mud Splat
-Faber-Castell Bold Pitt Pen: Warm Grey IV
-Ranger Tim Holtz Distress Crackle Paint:: Clear Rock Candy
-Ranger Wendy Vecchi Archival Ink: Tree Branch
-Ranger Mini Ink Blending Tool
-Ranger Multi Matte Medium
-Sizzix Eileen Hull Thinlits: Birds and Butterflies, Floral Arch and Words
-Ranger Tim Holtz Distress Mixed Media Heavystock
-Ranger Glossy Accents
-Egg Carton, Book Paper Shreds, Mini Craft Foam Eggs, Medium Craft Foam Egg, Wood Dowel or Golf Tee, Wood Knob, Metal Ornate Corners, Velcro Sticky Squares, Super Glue, 5 Micro Lights String with Lithium Battery Pack, Rubber Bands
Using Eileen's Trinket Box and Frame XL die and Mat Board (3 sheets), I die cut four of the box sides, four of the scored book ends (I show five, but only used four.), one of the box backs, one solid arch piece, and one arch piece with the oval cut out.
I trimmed the long side of the box sides (about 1/8 inch) to match the length of the scored pieces, so that they would fit together perfectly when assembled.
I affixed the box sides together using Skor Tape, and then only attached the box back to one of the boxes. I used the tabs on the backless box to attach it to the other box, so that now I have one wider and deeper box. I trimmed two of the scored pieces to fit the top and bottom of the box (about 1/2 inch), and saved the small scraps for a future project. I rounded the corners from the cut pieces using the 1/4 inch side of the Corner Chomper.
I cut 2.5 inches off a piece of 12x12 cardstock, and adhered it with Skor Tape around the box for more security and to strengthen the joint bonds of the two boxes, centering it on the top and wrapping it around both sides, with a tiny amount of overhang wrapped along the bottom. It won't be seen, so it doesn't matter if it doesn't cover the's only for strength.
I cut two pieces of Tim Holtz Idea-ology Collage Tissue Paper in Aviary about 1/2 inch bigger on all sides than the arched pieces. I collaged the pieces on using Distress Matte Collage Medium from Tim and Ranger, wrapping the overage on the back, and tearing a center on the framed arch piece, wrapping it around the back as well. I decided I liked the words 'Birdie Darling', so I added those along the top of the framed arch piece...perfect title I think. I let these dry, and then inked the edges with Wendy Vecchi's Tree Branch Archival from Ranger with an Ink Blending Tool, and then I set these aside for later.
Instead of folding these scored book end pieces like they are intended for, I decided they would be wood wainscoting. I used a Gray Permanent India Ink Pitt Pen from Faber-Castell to draw over the scored lines so I wouldn't lose sight of them in the next part...the fun part!
I decided to go with an old technique of  'paint and rip off' for an organic look that works on paper products. It's always iffy to do as you never know if you will tear your project, but I never have and always like the results. I mixed a little Glacier Ice Fresco Finish Chalk Paint with Baltic Blue, and painted streaks on. Then I added strips of masking tape and ripped them off like a band-aid. LOVE the results! It gives you an instant vintage peeling paint look.
I kept adding layers of paint streaks with more Fresco Finish Paints in Magic Moss, Mahogany, Zesty Zing, and Terracota, adhering and ripping off masking tape in between colors.
Then I really went crazy with the tape, and added and pulled off so much to finally pull off a thin layer of paper below...just what I wanted to happen to add to that peeling paint look.
Everywhere the paper came off I added touches of white chalk paint and Terracota around the edges. It was perfect, and looks authentic.
Using another XL die, the Cupcake Stand and Pennant, I only die cut the legs of the stand, but I die cut two pieces using Mat Board, and four pieces using Tim Holtz Distress Woodgrain Cardstock.
I adhered the Woodgrain Cardstock to both sides of each leg using Collage Medium, and then paint the legs, both sides, with Mud Splat. Once that dried, I dry brush painted White Chalk Paint to the edges and parts of the center of the legs. Then I rubbed Tree Branch Archival over the legs, straight from the pad, to bring out the woodgrain texture from the paper.
I retraced over the lines on the peeling paint planks for more depth, and inked the edges of them and the pedestal legs with more Tree Branch Archival. Then I pulled out an oldie but a goodie, Distress Rock Candy Crackle, and gave all these pieces, especially the peeling paint planks a nice coat of crackle, and let these dry. Why? I like the texture, the crackle, and the sheen it really makes for more of an aged look as well. Once the legs were dry, I added Multi Medium to the joint slits and slipped them together. I had to use a little more effort as they were thicker than just regular Mat Board, so keep that in mind if you are doing the same. I used rubber bands to hold them in place exactly as I wanted them to dry.
I felt that the legs needed a little bit more...go I decided to add some filigree corner pieces to the leg ends for more of a vintage look using pliers to bend them to fit and Multi Medium for extra security. I did have a slight problem of the legs not being totally flush and wobbling, and I can't use a sugar packet to make it right, so I just trimmed them until there was no wobble. I didn't like the look of the copper finish on the corners for this project, so I did add a little Baltic Blue and Mud Splat to the corners.
I added Skor Tape to the back of the painted planks, and added those on the box. I used mini foam craft eggs and painted them with a mixture of Baltic Blue and Glacier Ice, adding flicks of Mud Splat. I needed a nest for the eggs so I used a paper egg carton, and cut off one of the bowls and trimmed it down to size. I painted it with Mud Splat and then layered in some shredded book pages with Multi Medium to give it a good nest look. Then I adhered the nest and eggs in the box with Multi Matte.
*NOTE: I should have attached the light before doing this part, so keep that in mind if you are doing this.* I cut a golf tee about 3 inches long (you can use a dowel) and I painted it with Mud Splat. I made a hole at the bottom center of the framed arch piece with a Crop-O-Dile, and I inserted the stick into the hole with a little Multi Medium, then I attached both arch pieces to the box, and covered up the stick on the inside with more shredded book pages. I also painted a wooden drawer pull with a mixture of the Glacier Ice and Baltic Blue, then I adhered it to the top of the box with Multi Matte.
Using Eileen's Bird and Butterfly Thinlit, I die cut the bird with Distress Mixed Media Heavystock three times and layered them together with Multi Matte. I like it thicker to paint on for the next part.
I painted the bird to look like a Robin using Terracotta, Mud Splat, and White Chalk Paint. Once dried, I adhered the wing on, and adhered the bird into the nest with Multi Matte.
I die cut seven of the Floral Arches with Heavystock and seven of the flowers from Eileen's Floral Arch and Words Thinlit.
I thought I would save time by inserted the arches and flowers back in the negative parts of the cut and then paint them in with Zesty Zing, Terracotta, and Magic Moss, which it did save time, but I let it dry and they stuck. So note to self and to you, punch them out before they dry. I had to use scissors to help me get them out. Then I adhered the arches to the sides and front of the box like they were climbing plants. I put the flowers on the end of the paintbrush and folded them around the ends giving them a cupped shape, and then I adhered them on with Multi Matte. I painted the centers of the flowers with Zesty Zing. Then I adhered the pedestal base to the bottom of the box with Multi Matte, again using rubber bands to secure it in place until dry.
I knew the birdhouse needed something else, as there was so much space inside, so I stared at this thing for several days and devised a plan to add a light inside. The problem was, I already sealed and attached everything and I didn't want to tear the house up to add anything. So I decided to use lights that had a thin enough battery pack that could easily be attached without breaking anything, and that meant micro light with CR-32 Lithium Batteries. The battery pack is only two inches long, an inch wide, and 1/8 inch thick...perfect for this, but the least amount of lights I could find was 10. I thought 10 lights were too bright, so I cut the last five off, and the lights still work!!! Keep that in mind for future projects! I added sticky Velcro Squares to the middle back of the battery pack and had it ready to attach. I sanded down the bottom part of a larger craft egg for a flat part to make attaching much easier, and then painted it, again with a mixture of Glacier and Baltic, and added dots of the Mud Splat.
I added a strip of Skor Tape to the back of the egg to help hold and guide the wired lights, and then wound the wire around the egg, pulling it tight. It worked perfect. Then I attached the Velcro battery pack to the inside of the right wall of the house, and used super glue to attach the egg to the center roof of the house.The rest of wire hid itself, as I looped it up and twisted it tight against itself. Now finally, the house was finished!
Lights off.
Lights on! Here you can see the battery pack attached to the right side.
And there you go! A big thank you again to Eileen for having me join along in her journey! Happy Spring everyone!
I hope your hands get creatively dirty soon!


  1. Your bird house is a fabulous project, wow! Have a great April. Hugs, Valerie

  2. What a lovely design and such a fabulous way to use the dies to create something so unique. A great Spring pedestal Anita xx

  3. Anita, I love this beautiful birdhouse! Such a wonderful and creative way to use the dies! Thank you for sharing your creativity and inspiration! xx

  4. Anita- I love how you combined all those dies to make a sweet little bird's nest complete with lights! So clever <3

  5. Anita - What a lovely birdhouse - you've created a wonderful spring project! Thank you for sharing your amazing ideas with us.

  6. I absolutely love your birdhouse Anita, you have so many wonderful ideas! I love your great tutorial too (need to up my game for sure!), the ripped paint technique is new to me and the outcome of it looks fantastic. Thanks so much for sharing such great tips and techniques. Anne xx

  7. this is awesome!! The "wood" panels! It lights up! loooooove it!

  8. Very cool technique with the masking tape - love the effect! Creative genius to put the die cuts together for this project. Great tutorial!

  9. Wow, fabulous creation! Congrats on the new gig. :)

  10. Congratulations on the design team. I really like Eileen Hull dies. Clever project, so cute and well done!

  11. This is so clever! And gorgeous! I love the way your mind works!

  12. Love this,,,thanks for the tutorial


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