Hi all! It’s Shelly Hickox with you today, and I have a grungy, spooky set of altered apothecary bottles that would be perfect for decorating your house this Halloween.
You can use old bottles like I did – these were found at an estate sale – or you can use empty bottles from things like olive oil, salad dressing, etc. Since we’ll grunge them up a lot, it doesn’t really matter what the bottles look like in the beginning. The dies I used are almost all from Tim Holtz’s new Alterations release. I loved combining them in different ways and treating them with different finishes – it’s hard to believe some of them are die cuts!
After giving the largest bottle an aged finish using Rock Candy crackle paint, I decided to create a metal looking spider web to decorate the bottom. I die cut a piece of kraft cardstock using Tim Holtz’s Cobwebs strip die and then applied a coating of embossing ink. I covered it with silver embossing powder and heat it with a heat tool to melt the powder. I applied another coating of embossing ink, this time sprinkling the spiderweb with clear Ultra Thick Embossing Enamel. After heating that to melt the powder, I lightly covered the web with black paint and then wiped it off, giving it an aged look. The embossed web was adhered to the bottle with craft glue.
The bottle was decorated with various papers and embellishments. I also added a tag that was cut using Tim Holtz’s Tiny Tabs and Tags die, and a spider that was cut from Grungeboard using the Mini Spider Movers and Shapers die. Metal foil tape and a curio knob finish off the top of the bottle.
To create a little embellishment for the next bottle, I die cut a piece of kraft paper using the Ribbon Flags strip die. I added a white rub-on and then inked the edges with brown ink. The numbers were cut from black cardstock using Tim Holtz’s Spooktacular alphabet strip die. To make them stand out, I covered them with Glossy Accents. When dry I adhered them to the pennant with more Glossy Accents.
This bottle was given a faux mercury glass look by spraying the inside of it with Krylon mirror spray paint. The center is covered with a strip of decorative paper and a metal lock embellishment. The top was wrapped with cording and ball chain.
The Bats and Crossbones Garland strip die is one of my favorite new releases. To create a little trim piece for the third bottle, I first die cut the skulls from kraft paper. Next, I painted them with Picket Fence Distress paint. While the paint was wet, I heated it with a heat tool, causing it to bubble here and there. I love the extra texture this gives the piece!
Here you can see how sponging the edges of the painted skulls with black ink highlights the bumpy texture and gives them even more of a spooky look. After adding a strip of paper to the bottle, I glued the skulls on with craft glue. To keep them from popping up, I used a rubber band to hold them in place until they were dry. Once they were set, I added a little trim to the bottom and embellished the top with some paper string and natural trim.
I hope you enjoyed this spooktacular project and are inspired to try making your own. Even if you don’t use the techniques on bottles, they’d be perfect on a card or any other spooky project. Have fun with using your dies in new ways!