Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Work in Progress: Primary Altar

Since moving back in with my parents and having to downsize quite a bit. Our altar just happened to be one of the many downsizes. In the past it has been on top of a cabinet that I had used to house my many herbs in our living room. It was nice because it was up high so little fingers couldn't reach lit candles. And the cats very rarely had gotten up on it.

Being that we now share a house with my parents, who know we are pagan, but don't talk about it (try explaining to them that Brigid is Celtic not Italian, and they still don't get it). So our main altar, which is our primary one, has been moved into our bedroom (with little mini ones spread through out our living space).

Our primary altar is currently still being crafted. But for the most part it's finishing touches that remain. One year my husband snagged a car cleaning kit that was on clearance after the holidays. It came with a container of dashboard wipes, tire cleaning spray, etc. Well the kit also came in a decent wooden box, which I happened to lay claim to before the plastic cellophane wrapping came off.

Wooden box before alterations

 The box opened up with fake velvet lining

I knew that I wanted the box to sit the bookshelf that sits at the end of our bed. I also wanted the lid to fold downward for a work space. What I needed to do was figure out a way for the lid to fold open downward and to be able to keep the back of the box from tilting backwards when the lid was fully opened.

How I wanted the box to open

Easy enough fix. Since we've been remodeling our house, there was scrap wood laying about all over the place. So I opened the lid and placed pieces of wood underneath the main box part until the box was level with the lid. I measured the gap between my floor and the bottom of the box and went about finding pieces of wood that would be wide enough.

It's starting to get it's legs

The altar legs after some black paint

I didn't find wood that was the exact width I needed so that brought me to the table saw and chop saw. Remember to wear your safety goggles!!

I glued the legs on with E6000 (love this stuff!!). I also brought in some finishing nails just in case I needed them. So far I haven't needed to nail the legs on to reinforce them. I also took out the fake velvet backing and painted it black with some craft paint. I also had some circular mirrors from my grandmother that I glued in to reflect candle light and it is a piece of my grandmother who passed away in my altar too.

The altar as it sits in its new spot on the bookshelf

And there it sits on the shelf where it will belong, until I decide to move it. The nice thing about it closing, I can close the lid and keep everything away from peeping eyes (not that I care if people see my altar), furry cats, and little fingers.

Altar opened up

The altar is far from finished. I have a few more mirrors I want to glue on the back as well as some sort of finish to the inside edges just to give it a bit of interest. Something else I need to think about is whether or not I am going to finish the outside of it some how.

I will update this post as I continue to add more to it. Keep checking back!!

Happy Crafting!!


  1. It's gonna look great honey!

    not to had you work, but you could add a shelf/seperator in side...

  2. you know, i was thinking about that. i think i will wait until i have everything done inside and see if i want to add a shelf then.


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