Raise your hand if you've got a shoebox stuffed in a closet somewhere that's filled with seashells. If you don't, you're one smart cookie. The rest of us have squirreled away these tiny treasures with the thought that one day we'll come up with a craft project to use them in. One day.... I just came back from a press trip to the Out Islands of the Bahamas, and with the scores of gorgeous shells lying on the even more gorgeous beaches, I couldn't resist doing a little beachcombing. [caption id="attachment_8125" align="aligncenter" width="389" caption="Beach at Munjack Cay, off The Abacos"] [/caption] On the trip, I came across all kinds of aquatic specimens – sand dollars, starfish, conch, even a slow-moving slug – that don't appear in the waters and shores of the Great Lakes I'm used to trawling. [caption id="attachment_8110" align="aligncenter" width="389" caption="Unfortunately, this lovely little sea urchin shell didn't survive the flight home."] [/caption] So now I've got an even larger collection, and it seems a shame to store them away. I'd like to bring a little of the beach life into my home, but the craft projects I've come up with are lacking in inspiration: I could decorate a frame or flowerpot, glue the shells together to make little characters (OK, Marcel the Shell is pretty adorable) or pile them into a bowl. [caption id="attachment_8121" align="aligncenter" width="389" caption="I tried the bowl. Still not quite right."] [/caption] Any ideas? In the meantime, I'm heading outside. Perhaps this lovely warm weather will get the creative juices flowing!