To end our first semester studying the classics of Western civilization’s literary legacy, we designed and created altered teacups to illustrate our love of literature.

Haley and I made time in November to plan and begin work on our projects, putting the finishing touches on them after our delicious Christmas teatime–an annual tradition. Read all about it, featuring menu details and photos of our semi-vegan teatime, at The Writer’s Reverie HERE.

Have you seen the altered teacups filling up creative boards on Pinterest?

It’s a feast for the eyes and a spoon to stir creative thinking for those seeking to make their own artistic original from a select teacup. Though I admit, it is hard for me to sacrifice a teacup and saucer to the purpose of layering glue and ornamentation upon it, once I take the plunge, christening my selection with E6000 glue, I’m all in!

I chose a Writer’s Life theme and Haley chose a Shakespeare theme, specifically a salute to the whimsical Twelfth Night. We brainstormed how each might look and what we wanted to communicate through the finished product. Using images found online, our ideas began to come together and we started collecting our building materials.

Here’s what we gathered:

  • Teacup and saucer
  • E6000 glue
  • Glue gun
  • Glue dots/gluesticks
  • Cut out cardstock images according to theme
  • Pages from vintage books
  • Lace, ribbon, yarn, and fabric scraps
  • Miniatures, small silk flowers, greenery according to theme
  • Styrofoam and stick dowels
  • Wire and ornament hangers
  • Vintage jewelry, buttons, and random embellishments according to theme

How do you start?

  1. Lay out all the collected items and decide how you’ll arrange the teacup. We chose to place the cup on its side on the saucer, rather than setting it upright.
  2. Arrange the items you collect according to your theme, placing them to see if it will work before gluing. Use the E6000 to glue things directly to the china. Use the glue-gun or glue-dots/gluesticks for affixing paper and cloth or embellishment items onto each other. 
  3. It’s trial and error. Take your time as you toy around with arranging your items.
  4. Add height to your display by gluing lace covered styrofoam in place and covering small wood picks or dowels, sticking them into the styrofoam. You can mount items on the dowels. Note how Haley used this technique on the right side of her teacup.
  5. Add height to your display by gluing wire photo holders to your teacup and placing items in them, a technique on the top of my teacup.

In the end, we were both delighted with the results!

Though our teacups will never hold our favorite Almond Cookies Green Tea again, we each have an inspirational souvenir to remember some of our essay reading and discussion sessions about classical literature.

What’s Next?

We have some exciting classics ahead of us in second semester, including more Shakespeare (movie day: The Taming of the Shrew), and Cervantes (movie day: Man of La Mancha), plus some favorites from the 19th century English literature stacks! 

For Christmas, Haley received a fancy new camera and is learning photography basics. To that end, she’ll be working on a photography art project all year, capturing images of the many professional Irish musicians she shares the stage with at gigs and festivals in America and Ireland. She’ll be collecting quotes and anecdotes and tunes from each musician. We’ll work on the layout and design in the fall, and publish a photo anthology celebrating her music mentors just in time for Christmas giving in 2018.

So much practical and creative teaching and learning happens in the homeschool life. Teaching and learning to know God in the “handmaiden of history (His Story)” that is literature–especially the literary legacy of our Western heritage!

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TWEET THIS:Gluing bits and pieces together to make literary souvenirs is part of a Family Literacy Lifestyle #homeschool Click To Tweet

Sharing Altered Teacups Illustrate a Love of Literature this week with:

Homemaking Party

Vintage Cottage Mama

Pink Saturday


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