November 6, 2013
Behind-The-Scenes At A Thanksgiving Shoot
Last August, we shot my column that is featured in the November issue of Living called DIY Thanksgiving Decorations. In it, I teach a fun new crafts project, a beautiful, creative way to bring the harvest season to your family’s holiday table – fabulous turkey sculptures! This blog is a behind-the-scenes look at that day. For more about how to make these turkeys and for many other wonderful and helpful Thanksgiving ideas, pick up a copy of Martha Stewart Living!
1 Because my grandchildren, Jude and Truman, love the small Tenant House at my farm in Bedford, we decided to have Thanksgiving there this year.
2 Matthew Williams photographed the story for the magazine, assisted by Ian Baguskas.
3 With the help of crafts editor Marcie McGoldrick (left), we devised a method for casting numerous turkeys from a material called PermaStone, a lightweight, durable cement.
4 Ayesha Patel, our Style Director, set a festive table with turkeys as the theme.
5 These amazing turkey statues are made in plastic candy and candle molds and were gently tinted in various earth tones.
6 Small turkey candle molds make perfectly sized place-card holders. A miniature serrated hobby saw was used to make small slits along the turkeys' backs to hold the name cards.
7 The centerpieces are full but unfussy - bunches of Timothy grass, wheat, and foxtail gathered in gold lusterware cups.
8 A closeup of the wheat
9 A really fabulous tom turkey sculpture
10 Old English carved breadboards held the turkey sculptures, as well as various small stone vessels for salt and pepper.
11 Another view
12 My Wedgwood Drabware plates were decorated with a gorgeous clip-art tom turkey turned decal. You can find it and instructions at marthastewart.com/turkey-decals.
13 This is a purely decorative embellishment. These plates should be replaced with heated dinner plates for the meal.
14 The soapstone countertops were adorned with large ceramic bowls of colorful apples and pears.
15 Another view
16 The how-to part of this story was shot in my carport.
17 A craft table was set up to show the steps involved.
18 This is the PermaStone all dyed and mixed to a yogurt-like consistency and ready to go into the mold.
19 The mold is set on blocks to stabilize and the mix poured in to fill the mold. A gentle tapping of the mold removes air bubbles and also settles and levels the mixture.
20 After about 2 hours, carefully remove the turkey from the mold.
21 For a two-part turkey, use 80-grit sandpaper or a sanding sponge to sand the flat back sides smooth.
22 Then, use a Dremel grinding bit, or a small piece of sandpaper, or a sanding sponge and sand away the ridges along the part line.
23 Then reach for some construction adhesive, such as Liquid Nails.
24 Apply a thin coat of adhesive to one flat side.
25 Press the halves together.
26 And secure tightly with elastic bands.
27 Let the glue dry for about an hour.
28 Then sand the bottom flat.
29 Matthew used the floor of the carport as a backdrop for the turkeys.
30 It actually looks great in the magazine.
31 I love this little army of turkeys!