Nature’s great masterpiece, an elephant — the only harmless great thing.    John Donne, English poet, 1572-1631 Artisan Enhancements Fine Stone and Pearl Plaster I’ve rambled around the world but I’ve never been on safari in the Sub-Sahara to witness majestic creatures in their own habitats. Until I achieve that dream, I’m quite capable of transforming inanimate animals into whimsical delights. I found a couple of carved elephants at the estate sale of a well-traveled couple. Here’s the Bull: Carved Elephant from Namibia He looks fine, right? But I wanted to revamp him. My elephants became willing — and I’d like to think cheerful — accomplices in the new Artisan Enhancements techniques I learned recently at my Annie Sloan stockist’s shop, Mid-Life Crisis by the Beach. I carried Lady, the smaller wooden elephant, with me. They were carved in Namibia, a south African country on the Atlantic Ocean that boasts the world’s highest sand dunes and Africa’s biggest game reserves. Their big ears identify them as African elephants and both the male and female have tusks for digging water in arid lands.

I showed Lady to Pat Stone-Smith and asked her advice. Yes, I could simply rub her down with oil but I wanted to try something new. Pat studied her and suggested using Fine Stone to create the illusion of thick, rough hide. I’ve seen images of Fine Stone pushed through a stencil, but I’ve never imagined it used as Pat was recommending. Here’s a stenciled image from Artisan Enhancements’ website: Artisan Enhancements Fine Stone Pat mixed Paris Grey with Fine Stone and I began coating the elephant. When I set her aside to dry, Pat painted the tusks Old White and the eyes, Graphite. Lady Elephant transformed into a pièce de résistance when Pat smoothed Pearl Plaster over her. She shimmered opulently. I think a Lady Elephant deserves that. Pat took a few swipes with sandpaper for the distressed look. Later on, I undertook the conversion of Bull at home and am pleased to say he whole process didn’t take long at all. Elephants with Artisan Enhancements Fine Stone and Pearl Plaster I put them in our shop at Avonlea. Won’t they make a memorable gift to an engaged couple – an elephant never forgets — or provide a charming addition to a living room, or offer steadfast friendship to a young adventurer?

Ann Marie and David

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4 Comments on Elephants, Fine Stone and Pearl Plaster

  1. Betsy
    October 5, 2014 at 2:45 pm (7 years ago)

    I love this idea and think they look so much better after you worked your magic. Thanks for sharing at our Vintage Inspiration Party.

    • irisabbey
      October 5, 2014 at 11:23 pm (7 years ago)

      Thanks, Betsy. I’m really loving what I can do with Artisan Enhancements products.

  2. Melanie
    October 10, 2014 at 11:38 am (7 years ago)

    These are so fun! You really made them special pieces.

    • irisabbey
      October 11, 2014 at 1:22 am (7 years ago)

      Melanie, the elephants just sold today (hooray) to a soon-to-be grandmother who loves elephants. Her daughter is decorating the nursery in an elephant theme.


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