Clara's Dream

   by Stephanie Spangler for Build A Dream (2014)

I made the stage from the box the Mystery Build kit came in. I then used two wooden square dowels and some of the plaster cloth wrap to make the stage curtain. The tree was made with an under structure of the round wooden dowel glued to the base from the wooden mannequin and parts of the flexible wire mesh with the modeling clay. On top of the wire mesh I added some plaster cloth wrap to make the branches, some of the left-over wire mesh for garland and cut pieces of the sponge as decorations. The star on top is a cross-cut of the plastic piece that was in the center of the plaster cloth wrap. The presents underneath are pieces of the box the mannequin came in and some of the packaging peanuts.

The window was painted to the wall and covered with the cellophane packaging from around the canvas board. I also cut pieces of one of the square wooden dowels to create the frame then used some of the canvas cloth, attached to the rod from the drawing mannequin, for the curtain.
The grandfather's clock was made from the tempered hardboard and the round wooden disc. The sofa was made by cutting the board from the canvas board to fit the novelty foam ear and covering everything with the modeling clay. I then used the foam rod as the arm and under supports. The canvas I stripped from the canvas board was used to create the skirt around the bottom of the sofa.
The pillow was the canvas cloth stuffed with some of the packaging peanuts and sewn with the nylon spool of thread.

I painted the wooden mannequin as the Nutcracker and covered the head with modeling clay to make it oversized. The hair and beard are the made from the sponge and the hat is made from the other wooden disc and more of the foam rod. His sword is a hammered piece of aluminum rod.
Clara is made from a wire structure covered in the packaging peanuts and clay. Her robe and hair bow are made from the canvas fabric, edged with some of the plaster cloth wrap as lace. Her hair is strips of paper from the redemption code that came in the plastic egg and her nightgown is a painted piece of the cellophane.

The Mouse King is also a wire structure covered with the plaster cloth wrap. His crown is part of the cardboard box the mannequin came in and his sword is a piece of the aluminum wire.

Tchaikovsky's ballet 'The Nutcracker' is all about Clara and the dream she has about her nutcracker doll. In the beginning of the dream Clara goes downstairs and finds that the Nutcracker has grown to life-size. Before they can leave for the Land of Sweets he saves Clara from an attack from the dreaded Mouse King.