Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Cairn #1 Unwrapped - Elements 3 & 4

Element 3 is the piece of the cairn that was played with most. Depending on the day, it could be found leaning against the bottom, sunbathing on the very top or hiding in the middle. A few times, it even seemed that #3 was attempting an escape since it was found in the flower bed by the steps...a mere 6 or 7 feet from where the cairn lived. How it got there is still a mystery, but I suspect that little hands - aka one or both of my daughters - had something to do with it.

The pointy impressions left in the cotton were a very pleasant surprise. I'm loath the wash this piece for fear of destroying them. Thanks to Fiona Dempster over at Paper Ponderings for telling me about her tree wrappings using rusted fabrics, this piece may just find a new life outside wrapped around something. Not quite sure what yet. Our mailbox maybe.

Element 4 created a beautiful rusted pattern on the cotton. The next time this piece is wrapped, I'd like to see what can be done to get the connections to show.  Or the holes for that matter. Maybe if this was the base of the cairn #2...


  1. I am really enjoying the unveilings and revealings...these photos said 'scrumptious' to me! Its fun to think about how the pieces might be used again as well...for a 'quick' result I sometimes wrap the rusty bits in whatever - leather, fabric and then submerge them in a container filled with white vinegar, weighted down and in the sun if possible for about 3 weeks and then unwrap. A bit quicker than your winter sojourn - but also a bit like cheating if you're in more of a hurry to use the piece for something! Carol Wilkes taught me that...


  2. Fiona - Love the internet and finding like minded people! Tried a variation of the vinegar method before...soaked the cotton in vinegar, wrapped the rusty bits in it and put it all in a plastic baggie. It worked great. Much quicker, but as you said, it does feel a bit like cheating.

    As I unwrapped the pieces, tiny bits of rust fell off the elements. Too big to be dust, but not big enough to use individually. I grabbed a large piece of cotton, wet it, laid it on the worktable and proceeded to catch the little bits on it. It has been rusting in a baggie for a week now. Time to check it later to see what's happening in there.

    Thank you for the link for Carol Wilkes! She looks like an amazing artist.

  3. I've enjoyed seeing all the unwrappings in other posts but this one looks amazing wrapped.

  4. Wow, love your rust work! I have always been fascinated with turning it into usable art. thanks for sharing!

  5. Wow, love your rust work., it's great to find like minded people getting just as much pleasure in experimenting��. I use white wine vinegar mixed with water and spray the material /objects, then leave on a small plastic sandwich bag. Have tried just using water, but takes so much longer and doesn't give such a crisp mark!


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