When I was very young, during a long 8-hour trip on snowy roads to spend Christmas at my grandparents’ house, I saw a little bird sitting on a fence right off the side of street. He was all fluffed up because of the cold and was the cutest, chubbiest, and most cheerful looking little bird I had ever seen. It was one of those cold crisp days, when snow sparkles in the sun, and the trees were laden with snow. I later found out it was a chickadee. That image is still very clear in my mind, and every time I see a chickadee in a winter setting, I remember the Christmases of my childhood. When I received the Occasions Mini-Catalog, I was already in the Christmas spirit, so needless to say, when I saw the new bird punch I immediately saw the chickadee in him!
I made quite a few chickadees, a flock of them really, and used them for my Christmas cards and tags. Here are two examples.
To make these I started by making a pattern. I punched one bird, then used an image of a chickadee as a reference to draw the boundary lines for each color section. I then carefully cut along those lines to create my pattern pieces. For each color, I punched one bird, then used the pattern piece to trace and cut that specific color region. (I used pattern pieces for the Whisper White, Going Gray, and Basic Black sections). I punched another bird in Naturals Ivory, which is the color of the belly and serves as a base to mount the other color sections. The Basic Gray bird parts were darkened around the edges in Going Gray with a dauber. The belly part was colored with Sahara Sand and Creamy Caramel. For the throat area, I used a white Watercolor Wonder crayon. The eye is a 1/8″ circle in Whisper White on which I colored in the pupil with a Basic Black marker.
In both samples I also used the branch and leaf part of the punch. In the first sample, I punched about 14 of them, cut the stems a little shorter, curled the leaves, and used them to make the wreath. In the second sample, which is a 3″ x 3″ card tag, I punched the branch only once and trimmed each leaf to look like secondary branches. So much can be done with this punch… I love it!