The Siren’s Song

I love costumes. I love dress up. And I love Halloween. Perhaps you were not aware, but July is officially the month we start counting down to Halloween in my home. We start discussing various themes for costumes (we all dress up) and I start planning out what I need to make. This year, I am also going to make a few costumes strictly for this blog!

The costume I made for today’s post is for an infant. I would probably size it NB-3 months (it’s fairly stretchy material). So, though it could be a great costume for Halloween, it would also make for a memorable infant photo shoot!

Okay, let’s get started….

I rarely use patterns when I make costumes. For one, patterns are expensive. For two, I prefer the creativity of my own brain. So, I have no pattern for this mermaid outfit, but it is just a few folds & snips. I started with a rectangle of green fabric. The fabric I used had quite a bit of stretch to it, which was nice since it eliminated the need for elastic. (I made a similar mermaid tail for my husband’s King Triton costume last Halloween. I used the same fabric and did not add an elastic waistband. It stayed up comfortably all weekend long.) I also used a bit of shiny, nylon fabric with a reptilian pattern on it for the fin.

First, I laid out my fabric with the ends meeting, like so.

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Then, I snipped off a triangle off of the right side off my fabric. (Babies are very helpful for this part lol)

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I laid the triangle over on the left side & used it as a pattern to help me snip off the left triangle.

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Then I stretched the piece fully out.

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Oops! I moved the baby, then I stretched the fabric out.

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Next, I snipped off the side rectangles, like so….

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Finally, I laid out my shimmery nylon fabric & placed my skirt base on top of it.

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Then I cut the nylon fabric to fit into the holes I had just cut out of my rectangle. I also cut out embellishments for the top of the mermaid skirt.

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I finished by sewing the nylon “fin” onto to the “tail” and sewing on the embellishments at the top of the tail.

In my next post, I’ll show the completed project. So come on back y’all!

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To Tie For

We did family portraits a few weeks ago & in preparation, I made some bow ties for my boys. Here is what I did….

I started with a length of canvas (left over from a previous project) & cut off a small square section.

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I then folded and ironed the edges.

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Next I glued the edges in place.

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Then I folded the middle of the square together and glued it in place.

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Then I took a long, slim piece of canvas and wrapped it around the middle of the bow tie and glued it in place.

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Finally, I took a small clip….

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…..and glued it to the back of the bow tie.

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My next post will have the completed project, so come on back y’all!

The Sweet Life

I whipped up this gum ball machine early this morning as a last minute birthday gift. (So it’s not for sale on my Etsy site.)

I started with a flower pot, it’s corresponding dish, a fish bowl and a wooden knob. 

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I used a colored flower pot, but you could also you a terracotta one and just spray paint it yourself. I used hot glue for this project, but it’s not the ideal glue. I would suggest Gorilla Glue. I began by turning the flower pot upside down and gluing the fish bowl onto the bottom. 

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Next, I turned the dish upside down and glued the wooden knob onto it.

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I had to rush off to a birthday party, so I had no time to snap a good picture, but here is the completed project. 

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So easy & so fun! Definitely something to try for yourself. Happy Hunting!

Decoupage Blocks: The Making Of

Life has been so busy! My husband is on break from school, so we have been doing lots of home projects. Unfortunately, that leaves me with little time to do blog projects. So, I’ve decided to do a few posts in the coming weeks, documenting some of our home projects. These things obviously won’t be for sale in my Etsy shop, though. Today’s project isn’t a home project, but actually a gift I made for a little girl’s first birthday. Blocks!

I actually got this idea from my amazing sister-in-law who made similar blocks as Christmas gifts for my boys. They were a huge hit!

First off, I bought simple wooden blocks from my local craft store. I wanted enough to spell out her name, so I bought eight.

I used scrapbook paper from my stash & cut out five squares per block. The blocks are six-sided, but I actually used photos of the little girl’s family to fill the sixth square. I’m not showing the photos in this blog in order to protect their privacy. So, if you aren’t going to use photos, you need to cut six squares per block.

I used this decoupage glue

and painted it onto the block, applied the paper and then painted it over the paper.

I applied it to all sides & then let the blocks dry over night. The next morning, I added scrapbooking stickers that spelled out her name on one side of the blocks and then numbers on the other. So simple!

My next post will have the completed project, so come on back, y’all!

Cracked

I feel like I need melodramatic music for this post. Something tragic. Preferably Opera. If I were more tech savvy, I would attach some great widget that would play music for this post, but, alas, I am not. Also, I definitely do not know what a widget is. 

Oh well. Here is the story of the sad day that I broke the cardinal rule of re-purposing. 

It started off with a fabulous haul at the local Salvation Army

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While there, I snatched up a great pair of lamps. 

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Sure, the shades were just awful and the brass was so, well….brassy, but they had so much potential. In my mind’s eye, I was seeing a fabulous pair of shabby chic lamps for a little girl’s room. So I brought them home. 

I decided to try something I had never done before – apply a crackle finish using glue. It was a fabulous idea, really, full of potential. Unfortunately, I broke the rules. One rule in particular. The number one rule of repurposing. Test First. 

Test First!

*sigh*

I began by painting the brass base of the lamp with pink paint. Then I taped off the light bulb and the cord. 

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Then I applied everyday craft glue to the lamp using a foam brush.

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Now here is where it all fell apart. In order for the paint to create the correct crackle finish, I needed to wait till the glue was “tacky” before spray painting. “Tacky”, however, is variable. Who is to say my tacky is your tacky? (I feel a People of Walmart joke should be here somewhere.) Now, if I had tested this out on some cardboard before applying it to my wonderful lamp, then I would know exactly how tacky my glue needed to be. Alas, I did not. Instead, I pulled out my spray paint….

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….and went to town before my glue had achieved the proper tackiness. 

This is what the poor thing looked like. 

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Not a crack to be seen!

My dear readers, learn from me. Always, always test first.