Creepy Apothecary Project

I LOVE HALLOWEEN – now that you know that, you will perhaps forgive me for my inordinate amount of excitement about this project.

The Inspiration…

I was scrolling around Pinterest, looking for ideas for my DDM’s (Dear Daughter Molly) annual Halloween party when I saw this:

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http://starrgazercreates.blogspot.com/2012/09/steampunk-halloween-apothecary.html

 

First I thought  “Wow!  That is so totally Awesome!!!” Then I remembered that I have an old wooden medicine cabinet in the basement.  I decided to make my own.  The following pictures show what I did, and how it turned out.  My family thought that I was nuts. but they just don’t understand how much fun I had – therefore – they are dumb.

For this project I used the following equipment and materials:

  • Hammer
  • nails – various sizes
  • pencil to mark the cuts
  • a carpenter’s square – to use as a straight edge
  • a saw
  • paint
  • decorative paper/scrapbook paper
  • hot glue gun and glue
  • scissors
  • my imagination

Here are some things to keep in mind while looking at this DIY post:

I am NOT a carpenter or cabinet maker.  I have basic know how, and experience from years of household remodeling projects.

I used things that I had laying around, plus one supply run to get paint and paper.

I did not include measurements, or exactly how I completed every little step.  Just figure it out for your individual project as you go, and do not sweat it!  This is just for fun.

If you want to make your cabinet with a higher level of craftsmanship and expertise, go for it!  I made mine to be brought out once a year as a decoration.

 


BEFORE

Here it is before – just sitting there in my workshop.  It has no idea what fate has in store…

   Before - Just sitting there in my workshop.  It has no idea what is to come.

Before – Just sitting there in my workshop. It has no idea what is to come.

 

Before With the doors closed.

Before
With the doors closed.

 

I used my hammer to gently knock the upper shelf out, and remove the nails.

I removed the upper shelf to make room for the props, and to use the shelf to make a gallery on top of the cabinet like my inspiration piece.

I removed the upper shelf to make room for the props, and to use the shelf to make a gallery on top of the cabinet like my inspiration piece.

I took the nails out that secured the shelf that I removed. Don’t worry about the paint. We will fix it later.

I took the nails out that secured the shelf that I removed.
Don’t worry about the paint. We will fix it later.

Here is the extra shelf.  I will cut it all up using the highly accurate "eyeball" method.

Here is the extra shelf. I will cut it all up using the highly accurate “eyeball” method.

I also removed this rusty tetanus screw!  I have recently had a booster shot because of my re-modeling habit.

I also removed this rusty tetanus screw! I have recently had a booster shot because of my re-modeling habit.

Demonstration of the eyeball method.

Demonstration of the eyeball method.

This is my little Japanese push saw.  It looks small and wimpy, but it can cut through any wood quickly and cleanly.  I Love It.

This is my little Japanese push saw. It looks small and wimpy, but it can cut through any wood quickly and cleanly. I Love It.

Cutting the end piece - not the most accurate way to cut wood - but this is a Halloween Decoration - not important.  I want to add that I do own and use power tools.

Cutting the end piece – not the most accurate way to cut wood – but this is a Halloween Decoration – accuracy not important. I want to add that I do own and use power tools.

I took the end piece and cut it into 2 triangles.  Use whatever cutting tools/method you like. There is 1 triangle for each end of the cabinet.  These will be the ends of the gallery on the top of the cabinet.

I took the end piece and cut it into 2 triangles. Use whatever cutting tools/method you like.
There is 1 triangle for each end of the cabinet. These will be the ends of the gallery on the top of the cabinet.

Take the remainder of the shelf and cut in half- lengthwise.  This will be the back of the gallery.

Take the remainder of the shelf and cut in half- lengthwise, and trim it to fit the space between the end pieces. This will be the back of the gallery.

Lay it out on top of your cabinet like so.

Lay the pieces out on top of your cabinet like so.

Employing the “eyeball" method again - mark a line where the tip of the triangle extends above the horizontal line of the back of the gallery, then cut it off.

Employing the “eyeball” method again – mark a line where the tip of the triangle extends above the horizontal line of the back of the gallery, then cut it off.

Tip of the triangle cut off.  Do this for both ends.

Tip of the triangle cut off. Do this for both ends.

Now we will put the gallery pieces together and attach them to the top of the cabinet.

Now we will put the gallery pieces together and attach them to the top of the cabinet.

I REALLY did NOT want to go to the hardware store for a better solution to this problem, so I improvised.   This improvisation was not great.

I REALLY did NOT want to go to the hardware store for a better solution to this problem, so I improvised. This improvisation was not great, but it was good enough!

I couldn't find the tiny nails, so I just bent them over.

I couldn’t find the tiny nails, so I just bent them over.

I marked where I wanted to nail, and pre-drilled a small hole for the nail in the raw end of the wood or else the wood can split.

I marked where I wanted to nail, and pre-drilled a small hole for the nail in the raw end of the wood or else the wood can split.

I hot glued it to the top first before I nailed it on with…

I hot glued it to the top first before I nailed it on with…

NOW I find the tiny Nails!!!! Nail it on  in as many places that you need for it to stay on.  Use a sinker to sink the nails in.

NOW I find the tiny Nails!!!!
Nail it on in as many places that you need for it to stay on. Use a sinker to sink the nails in.

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Back of the gallery - it is a mess, and there is a huge gap at the bottom, because it is a Halloween Decoration!  I really do know how to do this correctly.

Back of the gallery

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Back of the gallery – it is a mess, and there is a huge gap at the bottom, because it is a Halloween Decoration! I really do know how to do this correctly.

Ready to paint.   I wiped it down.  I should have sanded – but I repeated my mantra.

Ready to paint. I wiped it down. I should have sanded – but I repeated my mantra – It’s a Halloween Decoration.

 

In real life – I took a break at this point because we needed to go get our pumpkins (and apple cider donuts!), so I had a chance to go to the craft store and get paint and some Halloween Scrapbook paper!  Use whatever black paint (or color of your choice) that you have laying around.  I wanted black, and I was out of it, so I bought some acrylic black paint at the craft store, and some foam brushes.  I hate cleaning brushes.

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The first coat of paint looks scary!

The first coat of paint looks scary!

Second coat = better

Second coat = better

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The back of my cabinet was open, so I used some poster board that I covered with scrapbook paper to be the “back” of my cabinet.  I also used some ModPodge to stick some of the scrapbook paper to the back section of the Gallery.  It hides the gap really well!  While I was at the craft store I picked up a very handsome paper mache skull to put on the top of my creation.  I painted him black on the outside, and orange inside.  I made a hole in the bottom so that I could put an LED candle inside so it would glow!  Also pictured – Cathy the Creepy Clown Doll in a very early stage.  I may make a post all about how I made her.

Now for the FUN part!!!


 

AFTER

Dressing it UP!

 

My Creepy Apothecary

My Creepy Apothecary

Sorry for my bad photography skills.  My dear daughters and I made all the props.  I purchased some of the bottles at the craft store for a few dollars.  I also bought some labels that they sell at the halloween stores.  Some of the labels are hand painted.  We embellished the bottles with little things that we had laying around – old broken jewelry, beads, scraps of fabric, twine, left over findings from previous projects etc.  Use your imagination.  I hope you like my project, and it inspires you to do one of your own.  Mine is NOT done yet.  I plan on adding more stuff to the inside of the doors, and making more props for next year!IMG_0832IMG_0834IMG_0836IMG_0838IMG_0840

 

 

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