Thursday, April 19, 2012

What do fairies and cigars have in common?

My father was a very special man. He didn’t talk to fairies but he did talk to animals. Like Dr. Doolittle, he was a veterinarian. And, he smoked cigars.

I had never altered a cigar box before and every second of the process I was thinking about my dad and all the boxes he tossed. Which leads me to a story about a box.

My mother was brilliant, but was incapable of fixing her hair. She used to go to the salon once a week and every night she would wrap her hair in toilet paper and then put on a fancy pink frilly cap. She looked adorable.

When my parents went to Europe for a long awaited trip, my mother got a wig. And she named the wig Peter. When they arrived in Paris they picked up their luggage but to my mother’s horror the wig case was missing. My mother became almost hysterical and with the language barrier the French police thought a child named Peter was missing.

Eventually Peter was found, unharmed, and the reunion was quite sentimental. Lots of tears of joy, from my mother...and lots of laughter, from the police.

For a partner swap at, I made both a mini and a cigar box
using the Prima Pixie Glen collection.


I used the tiles from the collection and had to glue them down twice.
Stick you suckers!

I kept the inside bottom simple -
Gingham ribbon, a couple of flowers and one of mike's butterflies.

I love what I did with the inside lid.
Coffee dyed lace, a tag with some pixie dust, a tiny envelope
and card and some hand stamped muslin ribbon.

The branch is from mike's and I painted both the frame and all the butterflies with
pink acrylic paint and then used TH distress ink to give it a well worn look.

This is the matching mini -
for more photos check out the link above - A Diary of a Swap.

Have you ever made a cigar box? Or smoked a cigar? Or been to Paris?


  1. Your partner in the swap is so lucky. The box and mini are fabulous.

  2. I love this. A gorgeous mini and a beautiful box to keep it safe. Your story made me chuckle!

  3. Beautiful project! I loved your made me laugh :)

  4. Very pretty, love that paper and I will have to added to my wishlist at LOL. Well done your pal will be trilled!

  5. This is gorgeous! I've never altered a cigar box, looks like a great way to make a jewelry box for my little girl :) I don't remember ever smoking a cigar before, but I may have tried it once. I do love the smell of a cigar!

  6. This is gorgeous Ellen!
    Lucky partner!
    hugs Alyson x

  7. Fabulous projects - Do you still have the Wig box? Wouldn't it be fabulous to alter a box for Peter? xx Michelle

  8. I absolutely LOVE your stories! And your box/mini are just beautiful! :)

  9. OH my that was a lot of work...came out gorgeous, both the box and the mini...loved the story of your Mom and Dad too!

  10. I need to do this, my husband smokes cigars and I have never tried this! You have inspired me.