Tag Archives: Halloween

Happy Halloween, 2015 (with Costume Photos)

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Hope your Halloween was a treat.  Here are two pumpkins and one very long squash I carved this year.

Rem carved this cheerful jack-o-lantern with a similar smiling gourd hanging above.

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Our Halloween fundraiser at work was held on Thursday. I originally had hoped to do a group costume with some colleagues but not everyone was as enthusiastic about the idea as I was. Instead, I copied a Pinterest idea…but I didn’t pull it off the way I’d envisioned it: using grey scale makeup and black and white clothing and accessories to looks as if I were in a black and white film or photograph

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I didn’t manage to get very good pictures – either the makeup was coming off, I had real problems with the makeup all day, or I was missing the proper shoes (above) or purse.  My niece, Leah, loaned me many of the pieces for this outfit. Aren’t these sunglasses perfect? Her black pumps finished the outfit but I was rushing to have Rem take these photos before he had to leave, and I had on my comfier sandals

My biggest problem with the makeup is that I didn’t get grey for the base. I put off ordering it, than couldn’t find it locally and didn’t want to drive into San Francisco (the toll, the parking) just for makeup. What a mistake! I bought white stage makeup and mixed it with black powdered eye shadow to create grey.

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The color was uneven and dried too dark. It smudged off easily when I changed my glasses or fixed my wig. I get overheated and was sweating to the point that on certain areas of my face, I couldn’t even get makeup to stay on. I was dabbing and powdering all day. It was a bit of a fiasco.

Then when I got it on, it dried and cracked and itched.  The black eye shadow mixed into the white base was really causing problems. What a mess! I said to Rem it looked like elephant hide.

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For the party at work a theme for costumes was announced: a character from a TV show from the 60’s, 70’s or 80’s. I decided instead of trying to enact one certain person from a show, I would represent black and white TV, which is how I remember it being when I was a kid.

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I named my creation Blanca Noir and of course she was an actress in black and white films and television. But tragically, once they started making movies and TV shows in color, Blanca was out of work. So sad.

In the end, Blanca Noir ended up being creepier than intended, but since it was for Halloween, I guess it was ok. It was weird when some of the black and white makeup came off (like when I ate lunch) and my own color showed through.

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Wearing pantyhose, heels, an elastic belt, a wig and so much makeup was too much for a full day at work.  It would have been better for just a few hours at a party.

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I did have fun in spite of it and enjoyed the various reactions I got throughout the day. But I was really glad to get out of the get-up after work. Before I showered, I got a lot of the makeup off with cotton pads and Q-tips. I even had makeup in my ears!

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The next day I was feeling much more myself.

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Hang on…

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That’s more like it! Back in the pink.

Next year: something more comfortable!

Thanks for the visit.

 

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Happy Halloween, 2014!

Two Pumpkins

Here are two of our carved pumpkins this year – I was doing the last one after work today, a bit last minute.  Buy I got it done before the first trick-or-treaters arrived.

Boosted Color Pumpkin

Earlier in the week I worked on this batch of pumpkins.  Rem picked up a package of glow-in-the-dark vampire teeth and I decided to use them in each one.  The pumpkins are on either side of the stairs coming up from the carport.  I used the plant holders from our patio as  way to display them.

Yawn

Because these pumpkins were right by the stairs, I decided not to put candles in them.  Instead I just carved out the mouth to insert the fangs and used black Sharpie and white correction pen for the faces.

Big Eyes

Snarl

Skull

Soul Patch

Crazed Smile

I also did a few embellished pumpkins after seeing this link to A Beautiful Mess on Pine & Plum.  This is a fun way to decorate pumpkins without carving.

Embellished Pumpkins

The spider web was done with black Sharpie. The white pumpkin had a pretty stumpy stem that became part of the spider with the application of some black acrylic craft paint.

Spider Web

Nailheads

Decorative upholstery nail heads worked well with this green and yellow pumpkin and they are easy to push in.

Glitter Pumpkin

I think the shape and color of this dusty-orange Cinderella pumpkin looks great with a topping of Mod Podge and copper glitter.  Mod Podge was used for the decoupage stem and also on the small orange mini pumpkin with the black and white checkered ribbon shown in the group picture of embellished pumpkins.

Green Rhinestones

I looked into my craft stash and found these green stick-on jewels. I used pins at the top to hold down the end of each strip, but the adhesive was strong enough to hold them on the rest of the way.  Some clear gems and a large-stick on pearl decorate the stem.

Next year I think I’ll come back to the embellished pumpkin idea.

Hope your Halloween was both happy and safe.  Thanks for stopping by.

Bloodshot Eye

 

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Rain Reigns Supreme

Rain Hat

Here is my Halloween costume for 2014.  Yes, it looks like rain. It IS rain.  In fact, a colleague said I was the Raining Queen!

I was inspired by this picture on Pinterest and I’m very pleased with the results.

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Once I found this beaded curtain online, I was off and running.

I bought a large wire wreath form at Joann Fabric and Crafts (I made three visits to the store, which was crazy this time of year) and used that to start my hat.  Duct tape, nylon mesh and some hot glue gave me the rest of the structure and then I piled on the nylon net and tulle to form the big cloud.

Grey chiffon which my mom and I fashioned into a capelet, was worn over a black chiffon skirt, grey t-shirt and boots that I already had in my closet.  My sister Sarah helped with sewing and loaned me silver raindrop earrings.  I added some stick-on sequins to the capelet and used some on my face as well.

Close Up Rain

With California in a state of drought, rain seemed like just what we need.  We’re supposed to get it tomorrow, but I’m not sure I want to take credit or blame if it messes up the Giants World Series Victory Parade or trick-or-treating.

More Rain

I enjoyed the many lovely compliments I received and was pleased that all my hard work on this costume resulted in a prize at our Halloween fundraiser lunch event.  I won the “Black & White” category (costume could be black, white or black and white).

There were other creative costumes, including a plethora of different Dorothy’s in gingham and ruby slippers for one department’s hilarious group entry: 50 Shades of Dorothy – each with a different take on the classic. Scary costumes were also represented like this frightening creature with wings that opened and closed.  Great work, Jon!

Hawkman

Wishing you a very happy, safe and yes, even soggy Halloween.

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Black & White

Black & White

Here is a little preview of my Halloween costume.  Last year I was very colorful.

This year I’ve been working on something that is less colorful but very effective.  Almost all the items in the picture are part of the final costume: duct tape, black nylon mesh, white netting, grey chiffon and ribbon, crystals, beads, ribbon and thread.  The silver nail polish will be part of the whole ensemble but is not actually part of the costume.

Not shown but part of the costume: a wire wreath form and grey tulle.

Tune in Friday for costume photos!

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Silly Spiders and Yummy Mummies

Mummies and Spider

I’ve got two quick and easy little projects for you.  To tell you the truth, I think the little spiders are cute but I’m not entirely sold on the mummies.  However, since I’ve made them, I may as well share them and let you decide if you like them or not.

spiders in pumpkin tree

The spiders look pretty adorable and goofy and if you made a few Little Yarn Pumpkins, these spiders go well with them.

Spiders and Pumpkins

Now before I go any further, I have to include this disclaimer: I know spiders have eight legs and mine only have six and they’re also pretty much missing a body.  You can make more realistic spiders, if you prefer, and I made one just to show you that I could:

8-legged spider

But the following directions are for rare 6-legged spiders.

Spider supplies

You will use two black pipe cleaners, googly eyes, adhesive if the eyes are not self-stick (I used small glue dots) and a pair of scissors that you can use to cut the pipe cleaners.  In some craft stores and sites, pipe cleaners are called Chenille Stems, but they’re really the same thing.

Cut the two pipe cleaners in half, making four pieces.

Four Half Pipe Cleaners

Twist three of the pieces together right in the middle, twisting a few times.

Twisted Pieces

Wind the last piece around the twist in the middle, going around three or four times with each wrap next to the one before, not on top of it.  Then turn back and wrap a second layer of pipe cleaner over the first.  It should be snugly wrapped, but not too tight.

Wrapped center

At this point, it kind of looks like a spider that has had an unfortunate encounter with a shoe.

Make bends at the ends of each leg for little spider feet.

Flat Spider

Then bend each leg so the bend is higher than the body – kind of making it shrug it’s little spider shoulders.

Spider shoulders

Now you just need to add eyes.  You can put on as many or as few as you like, but I generally go with two.  I use small glue dots to adhere the googly eyes.

A reminder about using glue dots: take the embellishment, in this case a googly eye, to the glue dot.  Press it onto the glue dot, than peel off the embellishment and the glue dot together.  This is much easier and more efficient than trying to peel the glue dot off the paper strip and getting it stuck to your fingertips before you can adhere it to the embellishment.

Spider Trio

That’s it!

If you purchased some glue dots for making the spiders, you might want to try these Yummy Mummies: cheesecloth wrapped candy bars.  I went to the free weekly Craft Gym at Once Around last Tuesday mostly because I wanted to see if they had restocked orange chenille yarn to make more pumpkins.  I figured I’d also pick up googly eyes for making spiders.

The mummies are kind of a cute way to dress up a candy bag for Halloween but I think that most people who would be happy to get candy, wouldn’t care if it came done up as a mummy.

Mummies eye spider

I had cheesecloth at home and when one of the other crafters gave me some candy bars (I shared DIY tips and supplies for both Yarn Pumpkins and Silly Spiders), I decided to make some at home.

I used cheesecloth, scissors for fabric, an ink pad and a sponge, a distress dye stain (you only need one form of ink or dye – even a brown felt marker will work), googly eyes, adhesive, and thin candy bags like the Hershey’s in the photo.

Mummy supplies

When I picked up googly eyes for the spiders, I found these eye stickers by Jolee’s Boutique and grabbed a package. I’ll try them on some mini pumpkins.  You can also use a small circle punch and a hole punch to create eyes.

Cut a small nick one one side of the cheesecloth to get started, then tear several strips, about two inches wide. My fabric was 36 inches so my strips were 2 x 36 inches.  You can cut it if you prefer, but tearing it adds a great raggedy edge.

Fold up the strips and then sponge or smudge ink on the edges of the fabric.

Distress Inked Edges

When the ink or dye is dry, use a small glue dot or a bit of adhesive (directions at craft class said to use hot glue, but you’re likely to melt some chocolate that way), even double stick tape will work, and stick one end of the strip of cheese cloth to the back of one candy bar.

Wrap the bar, using several strips as needed, finishing with the end glued to the back of the bar.  Add eyes and that is it.

Yummy Mummies

To make paper eyes, I used a small circle punch, I think it is 1/2 inch, and a standard hole punch.

Making Eyes

I drew red veins on white paper and punch out two circles.  Using the smaller hole punch, make two smaller dots or circles.  I actually drew on the white paper with blue-grey marker and punched the irises from that. A black marker created the pupils. Foam dots adhered the eyes to the mummy.

Tied Eyes

I still think the spiders have the mummies beat (6 hands down) but with the right chocolate bar, I might be persuaded otherwise.

In the meantime, get your Orange and Black on and Go Giants!

Go Giants

Thanks for creeping by.

 

 

 

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Fine Feathered Finale

Here is my Peacock Costume for Halloween 2013!

Full Costume, tail down

I made the fancy feathered tail and all the other accessories; from the crest on my head to the embellishments on my sandals, and all the jewelry in between.

Head Shot, mask up, tail up

I had planned to attach the mask to my glasses but at the last minute it wasn’t working.  I had Rem plug in the glue gun, and with some wire, a chopstick and a few plastic baubles, I converted it into a kind of lorgnette.  It was much easier than wearing an annoying mask all day and it went well with all the other details.

I wore turquoise and green eye-makeup with some sparkles, black liner and lots of mascara.

Eyes

Here’s the decoration on my sandals (and my turquoise nail polish).

Fancy Sandals

The best part of the costume was the tail that I could move from down to up with the help of some mono filament. Here’s a link to a little video showing me moving the tail.  Thank you to Grace at UniquelyGrace on Etsy where I purchased the design for the tail.

This is the tail in the resting/down position.  The sides were supposed to fold down but the wire feathers I made were kind stiff so it remained fanned out both up and down.

Tail from the Back

Here it is with the tail up.

Tail & Mask Up

I even managed the tail when I was at my desk.  The trick was to sit down with the tail up, and the back of the chair kept it in place.

At the computer

A few of the biology instructors on campus reminded me that peacocks are male.  I just told them I was a cross-dressing peahen.  However, at the end of a day of strutting my feathers, I think maybe the peahens are happy not to be dragging around all that fancy baggage.

For today it was a lot of fun and I was delighted to win best costume in the “Elegant” category at the Halloween lunch and costume contest  at work.

Thank you for coming by and Happy Halloween!

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Pipe Cleaners & Pom Poms

Pipe Cleaners & Pom Poms

Pipe cleaners and pom poms.

Giant rhinestones, Dollar Store plastic beads, and Christmas garlands.

Sparkly Beads

Five pairs of fairy wings.

Fairy Wings

These are all supplies for my Halloween costume.  Halloween is just one week away!

Are you wearing a costume for Halloween this year?

Thank you for your visit.

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