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Octopode Factory Parakeet Bird Cage

by Amy Bowerman

I have been in the studio working non stop!  Without further ado I bring you my latest creation for the Octopode Factory!  This week at TOFF our challenge is “Things with Wings”.  I have a bit of a bird fetish so naturally I had to do something involving feathered friends.  I apologize in advance for my shoddy photography….*curse you daylight savings time!!  and November rain!!*

octopode factory parakeet birdcage

Altered bird-cage with Octopode Factory Birds

In all the excitement I forgot to take a before photo of the cage before I altered it but I can assure you it’s retro at the very least.  I’ve had it since I was twelve.  It even used to have a parakeet in it (poor Jordie didn’t last too long…that’s what you get for buying a pet at Woolworth’s…am I dating myself yet?).

I found it in the basement when we had a tag sale a few summers ago.  Needless to say it was NOT a hot seller (although mostly everything else was…we cleared almost $3,000 at that sale.  Not bad eh?)  When Goodwill wouldn’t even take the cage I decided to hold onto it…for a rainy day.  Well that rainy day was today :)

octopode factory parakeet birdcage

Low maintenance birdies

I never attempted bird ownership again after Jordie’s untimely demise plus I have cats now which I’m sure would not end well.  The original cage was a gaudy brass with a brown base.  I spray painted  the metal with Krylon Champagne metallic and gave it a coat of Krylon Glitterblast in Diamond Dust (again I LOVE Glitterblast I want to shout it from the rooftops!!).  Be sure to grab the Glitterblast sealer if you are going to use it.  It is wonderful and works beautifully to seal any glittered project :)

Octopode Factory parakeet bird cage

Mod Podge = <3

It’s hard to tell in the photo but the bird toy and swing were altered as well (they are the originals that came with the cage).  The toy was painted with Valspar Pearl  as well as the swing.  I gave these a coat of Glitterblast diamond dust as well.

altered bird swing

Swing low sweet Parakeet

I added vintage buttons, alcohol ink dyed crystals, ball-chain-tinsel ribbon and a green parakeet from the Octopode Factory to the swing.

octopode factory parakeet bird cage base

Mod Podge makes EVERYTHING better!!

The base of the cage was Mod Podged with this fabby fab paper I had in my stash.  Mod Podge itself is one of my FAVORITE things but when combined with a Mod Podge roller and scraper we are “rolling” into favorite tools territory.

Before Mod Podging I stamped and embossed birds in the negative spaces.  The edges were trimmed with sheer black ribbon.  The base of the cage was given a touch of elegance with this gorgeous filigree piece I had hiding in the depths of my stash.

You see those feathered lovelies?  I will get to how I made those guys in a sec…but first let’s check out the Octopodes

octopode factory birds

“Feathered” Friends

The Octopode factory birds were colored with Copic Markers and sealed and mounted on black chipboard with Mod Podge.  The green and blue birds were colored like the parakeets my Grandmother had when I was a kid (Mac and Petey…the blue ones are ALWAYS Petey)…I googled to get the coloring right.  The one on the left reminded me of Chilly Willy (Anybody?  “Ah-E-A-Choo!!??!).

I was so inspired by a recent tutorial I saw on feathers I went out and bought a pack of them specifically for this project.  To find out how to create feathers like these for your projects check out this fantastic tutorial from Kassi at Creative Inspirations paint!  Be sure to check out Kassi’s Blog for more inspiring creations and tutorials :)

While I was buying the feathers I was mesmerized by the beautiful craft birds they had for sale in the Christmas aisle.  I nearly had to slap my hand to keep it from making an unesscessary purchase.  I knew full well I had a shoebox FULL of vintage craft birds in need of some love (hopefully someday I’ll be able to upgrade from shoebox storage) .

I’ve saved them for…you know…a “Rainy Day”.   Thanks to Kassi’s feather tutorial and a fresh pack of feathers I was determined to save these discarded decorations…

craft birds

The bad, the ugly and the eye-less

This is a sad-looking group no?  Believe me these were the best of the bunch of what I was working with.  This was my first time “feathering” so I wanted my subjects to have at LEAST some semblance of feathers.

With a little shimmer paint, glitter,  new-found feather knowledge, and borrowed eyes from some of their less fortunate feathered friends, I was able to turn these cast aways into keepers!  Are you ready for extreme makeover…”Craft Bird Edition”?

altered craft bird

Pretty in Pink

altered craft bird

Fluffy yellow feathers

If you were wondering…Yes, that is a Kung-Fu hamster in the background and he will dance again to “Kung Fu Fighting” if I ever get around to replacing his batteries.  I live for Kitsch…no shame in my game!!

altered craft bird

Emperor Red, White, and Blue

altered craft bird

This guy is ready for the Rio Grande

I’m pretty proud of myself.  I think this may have been the greenest project I have ever created!  The only things I had to buy were a couple of cans of spray paint and wire so I could make it into a mobile for the latest challenge at LESSology “Hanging Mobile”.  Other than that I used up my stash and altered some items I’ve saved for a “Rainy Day”…I could get used to rainy days like these!!

Thanks for sticking with me through a long post…the devil’s in the details with me :)  Come “Fly” with us at TOFF!

Have a fabulous day!

Amy*

 

 

 

 

{ 8 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Dora November 30, 2011 at 2:28 am

This is beautiful love the birdcage, and love all the happy colors!
Thanks for playing with Lessology!

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2 Kirsty Vittetoe November 24, 2011 at 11:48 pm

Oh wow, this is really adorable!!! Thanks for playing along with us at LESSology!

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3 Stella May 23, 2014 at 12:53 am

Now I know who the brainy one is, I’ll keep lokonig for your posts.

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4 Linda Lapotka November 21, 2011 at 12:07 pm

Oh this is very clever! I love what you created. Thank you for joining us at LESSology for our challenge!

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5 ~amy~ November 20, 2011 at 12:11 pm

okay, now how stinkin’ fun is your project?! love your creativity! Thanks so much for joining us at LESSology!

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6 Angi November 18, 2011 at 1:56 pm

What a great upcycled project Amy. Love those adorable birds. Thank you so much for playing with us at LESSology. :)

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7 Audrey Pettit November 18, 2011 at 11:57 am

Wow! What an adorable and amazing project, Amy! Good for you for going green and upcycling all these oldies but goodies. This is just so funky and fun. LOVE those crazy birdies!
And I love that you’ve been joining us at LESSology. Thanks for playing along!

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8 yyam November 18, 2011 at 2:03 am

Oh my! What a cute project! Loved that you finally had use for that bird cage! I love how you “feathered” those birdies! W00t on the upcycling! :)

Thanks for joining us at LESSology! :)

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