As you begin your journey through the Haunted Mansion ride at Walt Disney World you enter a music parlor with various instruments and a piano that is playing itself and you catch a glimpse of the silhouette of a ghost playing the piano cast upon the ground.
On the piano is a very unique urn or vase. Copies of this vase sell on eBay for $500 and up. As I was walking around Hobby Lobby one day I noticed a rather ornate vase that had a similar silhouette and gilded Victorian elements as the one on the ride, or at least close enough. I waited until the vase was on sale for 50% off the next week and picked it up for $20.
One of the most prominent elements is the large raised circle on the vase. I sculpted a large disc out of Super Sculpey and baked it while it was on the curved vase using a hair dryer in a vice. Don’t leave it unattended as it can overheat if you are not careful.
I then made a variety of floral filigree pieces in 2 part resin. It had the grape and vine elements that are are on the actual ride prop. I had the the resin on hand and I have a collection of silicone molds but here is the original amazon listing. Once the resin had cured but not hardened completely I shaped them to the curve of the urn.
I secured all the pieces with superglue and gave the entire piece a coat of primer and a few light coats of Rustoleum Flat Soft Iron spray paint (always paint in a well ventilated area and wear a mask). When the paint had dried I gave it piece a few coats of a diluted brown wash to give it that aged and dirty look.
For the daily display in our house in the weeks leading up to the Haunted Mansion themed party I combine elements of the ghost organ from the ballroom and the haunted piano. It is not the most iconic or recognizable piece from the ride but I am thrilled with it and think it adds a great touch of Gothic charm on the piano top next to the candelabra.
Until next time…be on the lookout for more of our Haunted Mansion builds. We will have over 70 pieces life sized pieces in our Haunted Mansion this year.
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Until next time…
The Imagine Ears features the DIY projects, adventures, and thoughts of a father and daughter who use a shared love of all things Disney to create memories together through encouraging her interests in architecture, design, Imagineering, while exploring history and science.