Unemployment and Decoupage

Submitted by Douglas Wood September 14th, 2010
Certifikitsch Winner

About 12 years ago, in between gigs, I had way too much time on my hands and was actually starting to enjoy not working. One day I started cutting out images from vintage cookbooks and pamphlets I had and assembling them on an old wood recipe box I found at a garage sale, then happily slapping some decoupage glue on top. My wife became very worried. Thankfully, it wasn’t long before I got another job. Much to my wife’s relief, my decoupage phase was blissfully brief. This crudely made recipe box (which we actually use) is the sole result of my creative efforts during that time. I offer it here for your amusement and derision.

The eggs, pancake flour box, Corn Flakes and skillet are all 3D miniatures.

This is the top view of the box:

This is one of the sides:

The other side. The weird peach-colored boomerang shape at the woman’s neck is my attempt at covering up a rip in the illustration. I thought maybe it would look like a scarf but in fact it looks like I’m covering up a rip in the illustration by sticking a boomerang shaped piece of paper on top. The box of macaroni is also a little 3D cardboard miniature. I placed her hand right at the edge of the top of the box.

This is the back. Collage in the wrong hands is a dangerous thing. Note how incredibly off I was in terms of proportions regarding the Wesson Oil bottle, which is tiny compared to the cucumber. The wood is the natural wood of the box

4 Responses to “Unemployment and Decoupage”

  1. Allee Willis

    I love that you took up perhaps albeit briefly during your period of unemployment. What I love even more is that this box is still in use.
    Here are my favorite elements upon first glance:

    – The size of the cucumber compared to the Wesson Oil.
    – The fact that you thought a boomerang would magically transform into a scarf when you put the decoupage goop over it.
    – Your mastery of the pinking shears. The amount of borders created by them is blinding.
    – The Hunt’s Tomato Paste lady whose hands look like lobster claws.
    – The fact that the last ‘e’ got cut off of ‘cheese sauce’ in the second photo but you used it anyway because you liked it so much.
    – The little eggs in the first photo.
    – The fact that the phrase ‚ÄúLet’s try some new sauces” was used.

    All in all, excellent craftsmanship. Thank you so much for sharing! Are there any other art projects from other periods of your life lurking about?

  2. k2dtw

    This is wonderful, so glad you saved it.
    Love the pinking shears, have you been by the scissor counter at your local craft store lately?

    • Allee Willis

      I was never a pinking shears kind of gal as I never dug the uniformity. But I went by the scissors aisle at a craft store about a year ago and was blown away by all the kinds of edges that you could cut. Still too uniform for me but I must say I was mighty impressed at how pinking shears have evolved.

  3. Douglas Wood

    The egregious overuse of pinking shears was due to my inability to cut a straight line with a regular scissors.

    No other art projects that I can remember– at some point I reluctantly admitted that perhaps I should pursue artistic endeavors in areas other than the Visual arts, and I think the world is a better-looking place because of that decision.