Cassis Rufa Cameo Shell Vase with Gar Scale Flowers -Part 2

First, I need to apologize for the quality of the photos. My camera refused to work so I had to rely on the iPod. The pictures are OK, just a little grainy. When you click on them for the enlargement, you can still see what I am describing. Even though the clarity is lacking, I hope it doesn’t distract from what I’m posting.

I positioned the three pectins so the base of the cameo rests equally. The darker pectin in the front doesn’t actually touch the base. I added a touch of glue on the lip on the cameo shell where it touches the pectin. The two shells still didn’t want to adhere, so I glued a piece of potpourri wood between the pectin and cameo. I have a picture of the wood piece further down. The ‘artistic’ placement,  I believe, will solve the issue. I will also slide the vine through the wood to lend to a more natural appearance.

Here you can see the very bottom of the shell placement. I have a few concerns about the strength of the trio. I may need to think about an addition for stability purposes. The problem requires a creative solution. Other than attaching the piece to a wood plaque, I haven’t been able to come up with an alternative.


I’ve started with just thirteen cup shell flowers. In nature, some flowering vines do have multiple colors on the vine. With the right placement, I hope they’ll have a realistic look. I was afraid of the sepia shade, at first, but I rather like the look of the brown flower. Placed next to the red scales, they really pop.

After putting a floral base on a stem, I stood the wire in oasis. I ran a bead of glue around the center and the top edge of the base. The first row of gar scales was placed fairly evenly around. Another bead of glue was placed around the bottom of the gar scales. I did this not only for the next row, but also for added security of the first row. A third row of smaller scales was placed using the same method. A row of tiny, pointed Philippine rice shells was next. The plan was to place the rice shells as uniformly as I could to simulate new petals.

As you can see in the picture on the left, I didn’t pay very close attention to shell placement in the orange flower. The rice shell openings are not facing the same direction. I discovered this after the glue was dry. So much for my powers of observation!









The photo on the right is the vine. I started positioning the cup shell vine placement, adjusting it until I was satisfied. Unless you’re using hot glue or an instant glue, this is where patience comes in. Glue has been applied in three different places on the vine but until it dries, I have to wait to make further adjustments. Take your time here. Repairing goofs is time-consuming.

Here you can see the wood piece I’m using as shell stability. When I’m finished, I’ll try for better photos. It is actually an interesting little piece and looping the vine through it, anchors it to the design. The shade of brown blends beautifully with the overall color scheme. I like mixing natural items in my arrangements. I wish I could find real greenery then I wouldn’t have to rely on the artificial. The silk works for me, but I would just like to try the real McCoy once.

The picture to the left is how I’ve decided I’ve to place the gar scale flowers. Now I’ll slid them back out and add the dried green moss. Since the shell opening is so vertical, I’ll put a few glue blots for security.

**I’ll finished this article on the next post. The cameo arrangement needs a little more work. When I was attempting to add supporting shells, the original pectin came off. I hadn’t left the glue cure long enough. It seemed the more I tried fix the shells, the worse it got. Soooo….Back to square one with my design. Right now I have a cameo without support.



About leggygillin

I make Sailor's Valentines, Seashell flower arrangements and other shell art. Blogging about them helps me improve the quality of my work. By looking at my progress through images, I'm able to view the pieces differently. I think also it helps others who may be wanting to learn. Not that I am a teacher, by any means. I'm still learning, growing, and developing my art with each post.
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2 Responses to Cassis Rufa Cameo Shell Vase with Gar Scale Flowers -Part 2

  1. Elaine Czarnowski says:

    Love your blog, please keep e-mailing it to me.
    Elaine C

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