A Terrible Beauty Insect Pin

Bug Installation by Jennifer Angus. Photo: http://www.nytimes.com

Years ago, I was fortunate enough to see an extraordinary exhibition at The Textile Museum of Canada called A Terrible Beauty. 15,ooo exotic insects were pinned to the gallery walls, creating geometric patterns inspired by Victorian wallpaper. Once I got over the initial shock of being surrounded by so many enormous moths, beetles, and grasshoppers, I became fascinated by the patterns and this very impressive undertaking. Jennifer Angus’s work is a must see if you ever have the opportunity.

In this project, we’re going to be making exotic, creepy crawly bug pins, because it’s definitely that time of year. Pretty much everything you touch outside has something crawling under it. Ewwww!


  • Crayola Model Magic
  • white glue
  • pin back

Pin backs can be found at bead shops. If you’re in Toronto, Arton Beads has them in a variety of sizes.


Have a look at the websites below to see some exotic insects. You may want to sketch your idea and plan your colours, or just go ahead and begin working with Model Magic. I would suggest you limit your use of fine parts (eg.antenae) with Model Magic, since they tend to break off easily. Once it has dried, you can apply some white glue to the back of your pin, and press your bug on. I don’t recommend using a glue gun because the pins come off easily. When the glue has dried, you’ll be ready to wear your pin and charm your friends.

Interesting Websites:

Jennifer Angus

Textile Museum of Canada

Exotic Insects

Leave a comment

Filed under pins

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s