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Short Stories: Cheshire Cat

Jul 18, 2012

by ProfessorTiny

Etsy.com handmade and vintage goods

Here at Etsy, we believe that the story behind an object is often just as fascinating as the object itself. Short Stories is our series dedicated to telling the tales behind extraordinary pieces found or created by Etsy sellers. 

Here’s Susan of Professor Tiny with the tale behind her grinning china cat.

Alice in Wonderland and its sequel, Through the Looking Glass, were part of the template in my brain pretty early on. Certainly the Cheshire Cat is an odd amalgam of madness and good cheer (and, it occurs to me now, an antecedent of a favorite scene in the classic Evil Dead 2 with the laughing hero and demented furniture).

Mosaic work interested me because it involves breaking down something functional and turning it into something beautiful. It was great fun turning something two dimensional into a sculpture. What I am particularly pleased with about this piece is that there is a willow plate which I used for the nose, although only one of the doves survived the process to hover next to the left eye. Mosaic can be done on many surfaces (the core of this is styrofoam); my preference is to use wire mesh to reinforce the base structure and weave in thinset mortar.

At this point I have moved on from mosaic to working with altered photos — I live in an apartment, and the space is better for small scale work. I would highly recommend doing mosaic work for those with an outside wall they’d like to decorate, or an old basketball lying around — I have even used a 26″ exercise ball (with reinforcement). It really is very similar to embroidery, but on a different scale.

More Short Stories

Have you created or come across an object with an extraordinary story that needs to be told? Email us!

Bird ornaments, Lot of three fHoliday Decor,penguin, duck, painted sled
Bird ornaments, Lot of three fHoliday Decor,penguin, duck, painted sled
ProfessorTiny
$14.00 USD
Belding Corticelli and Coats and Clark, 9 spools in peach and green thread
Belding Corticelli and Coats and Clark, 9 spools in peach and green thread
ProfessorTiny
$14.00 USD
Brass scales, made in India, in carrying case
Brass scales, made in India, in carrying case
ProfessorTiny
$26.00 USD
Altered Japanese Doll,  Assemblage with Cherry Blossoms
Altered Japanese Doll, Assemblage with Cherry Blossoms
ProfessorTiny
$75.00 USD
12 Tree Ornaments, hand painted lot of wooden decorations,Christmas decor
12 Tree Ornaments, hand painted lot of wooden decorations,Christmas decor
ProfessorTiny
$22.00 USD
8 wooden ornaments, painted wood tree decorations for Christmas kitsch
8 wooden ornaments, painted wood tree decorations for Christmas kitsch
ProfessorTiny
$22.00 USD
Ruby Eye Fishbird Necklace
Ruby Eye Fishbird Necklace
ProfessorTiny
$26.00 USD
Burning Man tribal headpiece, Boho beaded collar in orange,turquoise and bone, desert priestess
Burning Man tribal headpiece, Boho beaded collar in orange,turquoise and bone, desert priestess
ProfessorTiny
$48.00 USD
Burning Man Tribalista feather headband, green and brown wild child helmet
Burning Man Tribalista feather headband, green and brown wild child helmet
ProfessorTiny
$42.00 USD
golden boat with pearl cargo
golden boat with pearl cargo
ProfessorTiny
$28.00 USD
Christmas Tree topper, Sugar Plum Fairy, Surreal Xmas, silver and white
Christmas Tree topper, Sugar Plum Fairy, Surreal Xmas, silver and white
ProfessorTiny
$42.00 USD
iridescent necklace, silvery tassel, double sided boho style art necklace
iridescent necklace, silvery tassel, double sided boho style art necklace
ProfessorTiny
$42.00 USD
Black headband, 1920s flapper style Louise Brooks Femme fatale headpiece, sequins and beads
Black headband, 1920s flapper style Louise Brooks Femme fatale headpiece, sequins and beads
ProfessorTiny
$42.00 USD
Wind up Santa Claus, Mechanical Santa, bell ringer
Wind up Santa Claus, Mechanical Santa, bell ringer
ProfessorTiny
$25.00 USD
Roses crown, nature goddess wedding red roses headdress
Roses crown, nature goddess wedding red roses headdress
ProfessorTiny
$44.00 USD
Altered horse assemblage, moss sculpture
Altered horse assemblage, moss sculpture
ProfessorTiny
$32.00 USD
Belleek creamer and sugar bowl, Belleek heart shaped candy dish, 0857 green mark
Belleek creamer and sugar bowl, Belleek heart shaped candy dish, 0857 green mark
ProfessorTiny
$48.00 USD
Wine bottle stopper, Delft Lady blue and white china bottle topper
Wine bottle stopper, Delft Lady blue and white china bottle topper
ProfessorTiny
$18.00 USD
Antique Books, Six vintage books, early 20th century,old book collection
Antique Books, Six vintage books, early 20th century,old book collection
ProfessorTiny
$24.00 USD
Vintage Wooden Locomotive, toy train with red wheels
Vintage Wooden Locomotive, toy train with red wheels
ProfessorTiny
$14.00 USD
Flying Eye of Isis necklace, gold chain with pulp fiction winged creature
Flying Eye of Isis necklace, gold chain with pulp fiction winged creature
ProfessorTiny
$35.00 USD
Chinese Chop Seal, carved soapstone, dragon, 20th century, Warren stamp
Chinese Chop Seal, carved soapstone, dragon, 20th century, Warren stamp
ProfessorTiny
$28.00 USD
Garden sculpture "Eye of the Dragon", broken china mosaic ball, black, red, green, circular patterns
Garden sculpture "Eye of the Dragon", broken china mosaic ball, black, red, green, circular patterns
ProfessorTiny
$225.00 USD
Copper Tulips trivet, art nouveau style oval metal pot holder by Marble Design 1982
Copper Tulips trivet, art nouveau style oval metal pot holder by Marble Design 1982
ProfessorTiny
$18.00 USD
Garden sculpture, mosaic ball made from broken china, black, red, turquoise, circular patterns
Garden sculpture, mosaic ball made from broken china, black, red, turquoise, circular patterns
ProfessorTiny
$185.00 USD
Engraved Brass Vase, enamel red and white floral motif vase made in India
Engraved Brass Vase, enamel red and white floral motif vase made in India
ProfessorTiny
$56.00 USD
D.W. Haber and son coffee pot, nickel silver pitcher
D.W. Haber and son coffee pot, nickel silver pitcher
ProfessorTiny
$42.00 USD
Mosaic sculpture, The Tumbler, poseable tabletop picassiette small sculpture china assembage
Mosaic sculpture, The Tumbler, poseable tabletop picassiette small sculpture china assembage
ProfessorTiny
$365.00 USD
Chinese flowers needlepoint in square frame, Asian decor for the wall, stitchery
Chinese flowers needlepoint in square frame, Asian decor for the wall, stitchery
ProfessorTiny
$39.00 USD
Stag with antlers, leather reindeer or elk figurine
Stag with antlers, leather reindeer or elk figurine
ProfessorTiny
$52.00 USD
Vintage Tribal Necklace, hammered metal silver color tube beads
Vintage Tribal Necklace, hammered metal silver color tube beads
ProfessorTiny
$38.00 USD
Rocket car,Space Age Car, metal toy car, tin litho Lunar Landing vehicle by E Flim Lemez , Atomic Era Toy car, display only
Rocket car,Space Age Car, metal toy car, tin litho Lunar Landing vehicle by E Flim Lemez , Atomic Era Toy car, display only
ProfessorTiny
$38.00 USD

2 Featured Comments

  • rickrackshack

    Vanessa Ryerse from TheMosaicButterfly said 4 years ago Featured

    My eye was drawn to this like a moth to the flame! I'd love to hear more about how you discovered what surfaces you can mosaic. I'm always on the hunt for a new substrate!

  • gossamer531

    Gossamer Tearoom from TheGossamerTearoom said 4 years ago Featured

    I love this! I have never worked in mosaic myself, but I love the idea that working with the pieces would be somewhat like a jigsaw puzzle. I am also very interested in how this process slows down the progress. I find that for me, anytime some form of limit is placed on some creative piece in which I am working, it just reveals itself in richer form. Art is not a race, it is an adventure! Don't rush or you'll miss something!

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