My gourd characters are made from upcycled dried gourds, fabrics, & a lot of dried botanicals. I cut and clean out the gourd, just as you do a fresh Halloween pumpkin. Carving dried gourds is really fun! Their dried shells are quite hard, which is why artists have been using them for hundreds of years. I make unique hats using gourd tops. The image below shows my workstation with my fairy-themed gourd characters in the making.
I've always had a love of woodland decor and fairy worlds full of magic. The decorations for these hats come from my "big box of bits". In this box, I have a collection of acorns, moss, berries, acorns, pinecones, and many other dried botanical treasures.
I strive to keep each gourd character unique, they certainly can not be "mass-produced." I also become pretty attached to the gourd once I name them, and create their face. They really are like my little friends!
This year I've decided that Dew Drop will get an updated hat. I wanted a brighter green to represent an even more woodland fairy feeling. Of course, finding the exact green to use was a futile experience. If you're a creative person, I'm sure you can relate to the trials and tribulations of finding the "right" supply that you've imagined in your mind. As the old adage says "if you want something done, (or created) just make it yourself. I decided to just go old school and dye the coffee sack green.
I was super excited to get started on Dew Drop's new hat after seeing the fabulous shade of green. It was just what I wanted.
I build the hat using the gourd top as support. Each gourd is a different shape, so each hat is made around the unique shape of the gourd itself. There really can't be a set pattern. This makes each gourd character super unique. As an artist and creator, I never get bored making the same thing over and over again. I just start "building" the hat and see where is wants to go.
And here is Dew Drop's updated hat. I'm pretty happy with it, and I think he is too!