My husband found this epergne a few months ago on eBay. He paid a very reasonable price for it. This style is called silver crest and is manufactured by Fenton. We have a collection of bohemian and Czech glass, as well as a few pieces of Vaseline glass. One day, I would love to have a Vaseline glass epergne.
As you see in the picture, there is only one horn to this piece. My vision is to create vines covered with flowers coming from the top and flowing over the side, much like a waterfall.
Like with all the floral arrangements I create, I will let the piece speak to me. Sounds a little dramatic, I know. Shells really don’t talk, at least not in my world. But it’s funny how I start with one vision and it quickly evolves into something different. The difficulty with the epergne is that there are two levels. I’ve never tried creating an arrangement like this ever. Striking the right balance between the flowing vines and building up from the bottom is the strongest issue. I don’t know how to do that yet. The beauty of the epergne can’t get lost in the arrangement.
For the flowers, I’ll use dyed cup shells. They’ll be red, orange, and yellow. I will be constructing five-petal flowers. The cup shell is ideal for the vines because they’re light and delicate. They won’t weigh down the vines.
As you can see in the two pictures, I assembled flowers in two different methods. In the first picture, I put a tiny blot of glue on a paper towel. Working quickly and carefully, I pushed the shells into the glue, gently maneuvering them into place. Once the glue is set, you just gently peel the flower off the paper. You want to make sure that your glue blot is small. Use just enough glue to hold the shells. Too much glue becomes difficult to hide. Then you can either glue the flower directly to the vine or to an artificial green backing.
The other application uses a poly sheet. I like it just as well for the smaller flowers. I purchased a Poly_E low density sheet from The Shell Store. I’m sure most hobby shops would have something similar. I also have a collection of plastic lids in different sizes. Neither the Bond 527 glue nor the Tacky glue adheres to the plastic. Like with the paper towel method, place a small amount of 527 glue down. Arrange the shells so they are evenly spaced. The glue remains malleable long enough for you to shape your flower. If a shell won’t stand up how you like, place another shell beneath it as a brace. Be careful that you don’t get it in the glue. Leave the flowers overnight so the glue will set up. If it’s humid, you may need to add a little extra time. Carefully peel the flowers off the mat.
I’ll post more pictures and an update in another day or so.