Bumbles Bounce!

It s time again for my favorite holiday and ridiculous costume making! Even though it is Halloween, Chris and I decided to borrow a couple Christmas characters this year. My all time favorite Christmas movie is Rudolph the red nosed reindeer (the stop motion animation, not the cartoon) and the Bumble is by far the coolest character, Yukon Cornelius is a close second ūüėČ I figured we could double up and make some fun Christmas cards with the photos in a couple months.

Bumble and yukon cornelius

thYukon

See the resemblance? These were actually pretty easy costumes to make. I made pajama pants with an elastic waist out of white furry fleece from joanns. I just used an old pj pant pattern I have had forever, pj pants are so easy and comfy I really should make some flannel ones for the winter. ¬†For the top, I just used a long sleeved shirt in my drawer as a pattern and sewed it up super quick. I serged all the seams inside so that it wouldn’t be itchy from the fur edges.

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Obviously the Bumble head was the challenging part, but I got him put together in just a day. I started with a cheapo hat that had a brim, and I glued blue felt around the mouth area. Then I cut two pieces of the furry fleece, each big enough to stuff with polyfil and stand up, I glued these on the brim as well. Then I stuffed them full (well, not TOO full- it was kind of heavy!) and sewed the head closed. His face is a piece of foam with blue felt glued on and white felt for the eyes. His nose is another smaller piece of foam with blue felt t give it dimension.  I sewed this piece on the head, and glued on white felt teeth. Voila! The Bumble was born!

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Yukon Cornelius was much easier, mostly because i didn’t have to make most of it. We just found an old blue jacket in Chris’s closet, and I had a black elastic belt. I made his ice pick out of cardboard and duct tape (very fancy) and found a toy gun at the dollar store. His beard is actually crocheted, I found this free pattern¬†online and my mom crocheted it up. She modified it by making his mustache longer with some wire to make it stand up, and she made a red hat with ear muffs to attach to the beard. I think it turned out great, it was pretty hilarious!

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We wore our costumes to a party at glassworks, and we had a total blast! Now that Halloween is over, I am hoping to get in some regular sewing time, my school schedule has been very time consuming so far this year and sewing has been put on hold out of pure exhaustion. Who’s ready for Thanksgiving break? This gal!

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With you may the Halloween force be

The In-Law’s Halloween party, disappointing it was not! Oh yes, this year Chris and I (and the dog) did a star wars theme. All the hub’s idea of course! I didn’t want to do the traditional played out Princess Leia with the cinnabuns and Chris only wanted to choose from the original cast characters so I decided that Yoda was the only way to go. Chris chose the rebel flight suit¬†that Luke Skywalker wore, and I left Princess Leia for Harper to wear.

Yoda’s head was relatively easy to make compared to some of my past costumes. I took a beanie and sewed green fleece around the edges and stuffed it full with polyfil. I glued on small styrofoam balls cut in half for each eye and then flued on his featured with leftover green fleece and felt I had in my stash. His ears were shaped with¬† pipe cleaners and sewed into the seams of the head. I used a robe pattern to make his hooded robe, and I made Yoda feet with foam and extra fleece.

I found some “furry” yard to use for Yoda’s hair on the back of his head. I made sure to leave a sheet of fleece around the bottom with a tie so that it would stay on my head all night.

For Chris’s rebel flight suit I used a jumpsuit pattern from and old Halloween costume pattern his mothe had for a lion. I added the cargo pockets on the legs and the arms. The vest I used some white muslin I had in my stash and I pinned it into “shutters” to create the ridged effect Luke’s vest had.

I left him in charge of the box and gears Luke wore in front, he went to home depot and got plastic tubing, duct tape, and gray spray paint and piece everything together on a tubberware container he paint sprayed.

For Harper’s costume, I used the pattern from her doggie jail suit last year but just used white cotton. I made a belt and added on Princess Leia’s¬†silver details with some leftover scraps of metallic silver material I had from a previous Halloween. I used brown felt and a glue gun and just rolled up some cinnabuns and sewed an elastic chin strap to the bottom.

The party was so much fun, and my Yoda ended up winning the costume contest! There was also a contest for the best Halloween appetizer and the best carved pumpkins. Here are some of the crazy food platters, the first three I made.

Powdered donut hole eyeballs. The irises are melted white chocolate with green and blue food coloring, the pupils are chocolate chips and the blood vessels are red gel.

These are little witches hats I made with chocolate cookies, icing, hersheys kisses, and sprinkles.

These are bloody bandaids, made with graham crackers, cream cheese and strawberry jam.

Here are some of the spooky foods my Mother In Law put together; pumpkin¬†barfing guacamole, and a table full of goodies like pretzel witch fingers, carmel peanut grapes, ghost nutter butters and Franestein and lily’s special brew.

There were so many fantastic costumes including the cereal character gang, Captain crunch, the Trix rabbit, Luck charms and Toucan Sam, as well as Carme San Diego and the USA volley ball team. Two nights before the party we had a pumpkin carving extraganza and carved about 20 pumpkins, it was extreme!

This one was carved by my friend Jackie, she used a potato pealer and some other tools to shave this into an amazing skull. Obviously she won the pumpin carving contest!

More Halloween festivities to come, hope you all have a spooktacular holiday!


Yard sale steals

This weekend was the big yard sale event for my local neighborhoods, over 100 houses particiapted this year. I went with my mother in law, Chris, my sister in law Rachel and a couple friends to find treasures. I was not disappointed! I just accepted a position teaching math (which I am super stoked about) so I was mostly looking for math games and tools for my classroom, but then we ran into a woman who was selling bins of fabric and patterns. I pretty much squealed and started diggingthrough them like a little kid. The lady seemed pretty ready to get rid of all of it so she offered up the whole lot a $1 a bin. We pretty much got them for free, it was ridiculous!

Now don’t get me wrong, not everything in this grab bag was a winner but I did find some cute stuff (and some pretty hideous stuff too).The majority of the patterns are mostly little kid items which I don’t have too much use for yet, maybe someday. However, get a look at these gems buried in the stash:

Now I am certainly no belly shirt kind of girl, but I do like the simple button down on view D. Who can’t use a button down shirt or two?

This pattern appealed to the Paris Hilton dress up my dog part of me. Look at that raincoat, how stinkin cute! I also like the t-shirt with the frisbee pocket on view F. However, I don’t know if view B is supposed to be a hoodie or maybe a ghost costume, but the dog looks like a member of the KKK in the picture. That just ain’t right.

Ok so I am a sucker for cheesy Christmas crafts. Look how cute they are! Meet Mr and Mrs Claus! I am so making this in December…

This Santa on the other hand is just down right creepy. I mean he doesn’t even look like santa, he’s a full size elderly man wearing a bathrobe. He’s definitely not pulling off the Hugh Heffner look well.

Hey girl, check out my demented dolly hair bow! don’t I look fly?

This is actually a pattern for Barbie clothes, there were a couple in the bin but I thought this one was too cute. How stylish are these Barbie outfits? I wish they were actual people patterns because I’d totally rock these looks!

This was the oddball lingerie pattern that just didn’t fit in with the rest. Its pretty zsa zsa though. Mee-yow!

I don’t know what is more awesome, the fact that they have 100 pictures of this boxer short pattern of the two¬†80’s models with matching haircuts. Just wow

The fabric selection had a few conversation starters too, besides the 5 different cat prints that I found. This was a pattern printed right on the fabric with directions for making “Mama Bunny with babies”. Though a bit strange, I have never seen something like this before.

There was two panels of this dogs playing poker print. Again, just wow

My mother in law also found this fabric at another yard sale, $1.50 for 3 yards of vintage yellow and turquoise gingham. I absolutely love this! I may have to whip up one last sun dress before it starts getting chilly out.

Good day of bargains in the neighborhood! I’m looking forward to the next one ūüôā


Christmas Crafts: McCalls 5205, McCalls 6219, and McCalls 3777

As I was putting up my Christmas tree this year I noticed that I really don’t have many¬†other¬†Christmas decorations for our house.¬† We don’t even have a wreath for our door anymore, it somehow disappeared over the years. This made me a little excited however,¬†because McCalls had a $0.99 pattern sale a few weeks ago and they have so many cute Christmas crafts! Our house isn’t very big so I picked out decorations that would fit into specific spots in our house and I really wanted to make a wreath for the front door. The Santa wreath on the McCall’s pattern 5205 was sooo cute, I had to make it (even though it looked pretty complicated). He ended up being fairly step by step easy to follow, but very time consuming and used all sorts of different fabric, remnants and other craft materials.

And here’s my version hanging on our yellow door:

Besides the pure time alone I spent cutting out all the tiny pieces to sew and glue, the patchwork hat probably took the longest amount of time to sew. The pattern called for decorative stitching to sew the pieces together. Although I could have omitted this step and just sewed them on with straight stitches and called it a day, I thought the decorative stitches gave it much more depth and character. The beard also took a fair amount of time, it was made of 32 round circular curlicues that each had to be sewed into loops and hot glued individually. I ended up cutting a few extras to fill in bald spots and in the process I think I have third degree burns on my fingers. That part really sucked!

His eyes were blue buttons that I had, they were smaller than the ones the pattern called for but oh well. I thought it was strange how the instructions said to sew the button eyes on but then you turn around and glue his wooden ball nose on… it would be¬†much quicker to just glue them all on at once, but hey what do I know? I substituted the little star ornament¬†and just cut up a¬†fake branch of pine needles and holly which were at the craft store for under a $1.

I couldn’t find little glasses anywhere so for now this Santa has 20/20 vision. My favorite part of this Santa was putting real blush on his cheeks to make them rosy.

Despite how much time this project took, I totally had a blast making it, and I would definitely make it again as a gift for someone worth the time, like my Mom. There is a witch version for Halloween included in the pattern which I plan to make next year for sure (she looks much less time consuming too).

For my next project I wanted to make something for the kitchen, and I noticed the little gingerbreadman and santa chef dolls on McCalls 6219. These seemed like they would be much quicker to make since they were much smaller, however these little guys also had many little pieces and steps that soaked up some time. The gingerbread man went quicker than the santa doll since he was more or less one big piece and the apron and hat were the extra separates to make. Santa had the boots, the pants, the shirt, head and hands that all had to be pieced together. Plus he had much more stuff to be glued on with his beard and hair, and the fur around his sleeves and boots.

One thing that was odd about this pattern was that it said to draw on the mouth and eyes for both dolls, but I thought this would look kind of crappy and unfinished so I stitched these on.

This pattern was also easy and fun to make, the only gripe I have is that there was a lot of hand stitching involved, the legs, arms and hats all had to be hand stitched on to the dolls.

Finally, I wanted something to put up on our breakfast bar that would be more of  bigger centerpiece, and I saw a review on this Christmas tree on McCalls 3777 so I gave it a shot. This pattern also came with a tree skirt, ornaments and a stocking so I think I got more bang for my buck (literally, a buck). This was a super duper easy pattern, just cut out 6 trees from your fabric, 3 each contrasting and then you just sew them all together straight down the center and stuff them. I used red and green velvet material. I omitted the lace on the edges and added jingle bells on the branches instead. This was such an easy and cheap decoration to make that I made one for my friend Katie as a Christmas gift. She is a University of Kentucky fanatic so hers is of course UK themed.

I think that the cotton or more sturdy fabrics are better suited for this project since they don’t stretch out when you stuff the tree and they maintain their shape.

I had so much fun doing these Christmas crafts but at this point I am all crafted out for a while! I am looking forward to some new projects I have lined up, one of which is a coat. I have never made one before so this should be a new adventure for me!


Stitch-N-Bitch Night with my ladies!

Last night I had a bunch of my girlfriends over to bring their sewing¬†machines, wine and snacks and we had a fabulous Stitch-N-Bitch evening! There was some good projects and sewing instruction, as well as some good ole gal bitching time ūüėČ

Check out all our machines! This is minus my Babylock and my serger since they didn’t fit on the table. It was like a sweatshop in my crib!

Two of my friends Sarah and Rachel are rookies and came over to learn the basic mechanics of how to load the bobbin and how the machine works with tension and stitch lengths, how to feed the fabric through, etc… One of the projects they tried out was a scrunchie “10 minute¬†scarf” that Rachel found on Hope Studios blog. This was an interesting project for them to start with since it required for handrolling elastic thread on the bobbin and taking the tension to zero, and using a baste stitch in order to create the gathers. The scarves ended up turning out pretty well in the end though! Here they are in action:

Purple knit fabric, pre-cut:

Instructional methods

and… the final product!

My friend Jackie is probably the most experienced sewer of all of us, she went to SCAD and knows al sorts of techniques and has her own industrial sewing machine at home. She wanted to try out one of our fancy schmancy elctronic commercial machines, so she brought over some projects to test out. One of them was a bright pink bridesmaids dress that her sister asked her to make into something wearable (AKA make it super short for the clubs)

And here she is taking in a sweater, something I have never tried to do before

My friend Jo who I’d say probably has the most comparable skill set in sewing to myself. She brought over her Mom’s Husqvana Serger that she is borrowing, this is new territory she’s trying to conquer! Her Mom’s machine was crazy complicated, I felt silly ever thinking my serger was confusing because compared to this beast my machine is like the hooked on phonics version. She had to sit down with the manual and get out the tweezers and thread through all sorts of hooks and holes, it was like a logic puzzle. She got a little frusterated to say the least, this is where less “stitching” and more “bitching” came into play-

Reading the instructions…

Serger Rage!

On a happier note, Sarah completed her first placemat- check it out!

Finally my friend Anne who doesn’t do too much sewing, but does do a whole lot of crafting brought over some coatsers shewas making for her mother for Christmas. She just used white tiles (like you would use in the bathroom) from the hardware store, and decoupaged them withdesigned paper. That is she glued them onand added another glue coat on top to give them a protective seal and add some shine.

The coasters looked super cute!

I didn’t get too much of my own Christmas craft projects done since I was helping out with the others, but that’s ok because it was a blast! I highly recommend getting together with your sewing friends and having a sewing night, its the perfect way to trade tips and knowledge base as well as ideas- sewing¬†CAN be a fun social event!


Funky & Fun House Warming Wreath

My two friends Jo and Dave (who I mentioned in a previous post) are moving back home to Louisville, and are schedule to close on their amazing new house next month! I am so excited for them to move back and they will be really close to Chris and I so we can hang out. I wanted to make them a fun house warming gift, and I was inspired by my friend Andrea’s awesome talent for making door wreaths.¬†They are not your everyday Hobby Lobby style wreath, she makes them all by hand and adds fun accessories and themes to each one so that they are unique to the person who owns the door in which they hang ūüôā Check out her designs on her Etsy site at http://www.etsy.com/people/WishWreaths.

The best part about her shop is that she donates 10% of the price of each wreath to the Make a Wish Foundation, which is so awesome! Here is a Derby inspired wreath she made that I think is absolutely adorable, how stinkin cute is this?? She is so creative!

Although I don’t have as much experience making wreaths I thought I would try my hand at it, it looks like so much fun! I have a big jar full of different colored buttons so I thought I would use them as the theme for Jo and Dave’s wreath. Jo is an incredible sewer and I thought that¬†buttons would be appropriate. Since the buttons are so bright I picked out some thick navy blue¬†yarn that would make them stand out. I started with a foam wreath ring from the craft store and used quilting batting cut in strips to wrap around the foam to bulk it up bit. This also made it easier to wrap the yarn around too.

After I fully wrapped the wreath with yarn I busted out the old glue gun! I found some wooden letters, painted them orange¬†and used them to add their future newly wed’s last name. While I waited for these to dry, I started gluing on the buttons, I just picked colors at random, gluing some together stacking them and leaving some loose.

When the letters dried I glued those bad boys on too.

And that was it! Very very easy, and minimal glue gun burns. I pat myself on the back. Here is the finished product:

I hope that they like it! I also made one for my house too, Chris and I have a deep love for owls as we even had an owl theme to our wedding. I made the little owls out of felt as well as the orange and green flowers.

 

Not your everyday run of the mill Grandma wreath ay?