Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Bat Costume

 Last year my oldest wanted to be a bat. However, I wanted more of a cuddly woodland theme so I brainwashed him into being a fox instead. I promised him that the next year he could be a bat and even though he loved being a fox, he never forgot my promise. All year he would talk about how he was going to be a bat and fell more and more in love with the idea the more he learned about these winged creatures. For his birthday I got him a book called, Bats at the Beach, by Brian Lies and that sealed the deal. Mason was especially fond of Little Brown Bats so there was no way around being brown. Also, as a last minute birthday present, I made him a little bat stuffed animal and my son couldn't wait to be dressed in a matching costume. The only problem was, the light brown flannel that I used for the stuffed animal's wings was not being sold anywhere so we had to dye our own for a look-a-like finish. My son got a kick out of the whole process, and even though he is now mistaken for a bear of a kangaroo, etc, he couldn't be more pleased with his costume! 

Armadillo Costume

This year I couldn't decide what I wanted my middle son to be until I read him a little book about armadillos. The book showed pictures of little armadillo babies and when I saw them, I knew that he HAD to be an armadillo! With some leather-looking fabric (it wasn't thick like pleather but was some scaley printed brown fabric in some tribal collection at Joann's), anti-pill fleece and some stuffing, I was able to pull it off! In the end the fabric was a little too dark for what I was picturing, so after I sewed it all up, I washed it with some toffee colored craft paint and then added the eyes. I wish that I had more time to make the back just as I had pictured it in my head, but life happens. All in all, I am happy with out it turned out!

Friday, October 26, 2012

Skunk Costume

 This year I decided that my youngest child had to be a skunk. There is something about his little upturned nose that made me think that he had to be some sort of cute furry animal and a skunk is what I came up with. It helped that my sons were obsessed with this stinky animal all Summer long so the idea became more and more appealing. After all, if you ever see a baby skunk you'll see that they are actually darling little creatures...just like my toddler.

Up until the day that we took pictures, our little stinker REFUSED to wear his costume. Every time I tried to put it on him he screamed like a mad-man! I nearly gave up on the whole thing until I told my husband my costume woes. To my delight and surprise, he packed our men in the car, grabbed the massive costume and drove us over to a pretty area down the street where he charmed our little skunk into smiling happily for a 20 minute photo shoot! Prayers are answered!!!

I made this cuddly creature out of fleece and fake fur and stuffed it with fiberfill for a round little look. The tail has copper wire holding it up and the pants are separate.

 My husband is my dream come true

Thursday, October 25, 2012

Dollar Tree Owls Revamp

 The Dollar Tree has little ceramic owls right now that are almost cute enough to decorate with, but in the end are just a different look than I like. But that didn't stop me from buying a bunch of them for this Halloween season! I had just recently made owls out of paper mache (tutorials here and here) and decided that these little figurines could easily be covered with paper clay for a different look. This project is incredibly easy and very fast! You only use a small amount of clay so it dries in a couple hours and can be painted and finished in the same day!

For this project all you need is:
-paper clay (recipe here)
-some sort of finishing spay or sealant

Because I knew that I would be using a very small amount of paper clay, I decided to forgo making my own batch and used my favorite Celluclay instead. This stuff comes in white or grey and all you need to do is add water to the consistency you like. I used to use it all the time but now that I figured out a much cheaper way of making it I don't use it as often.

To get started, I took my form and started adding the hooded brow:

 I then filled in the rest of the head:

After adding a ring of clay around the eyes, I used a toothpick to give some detail by pressing it down and dragging it out to the sides:

Then I used my toothpick to make little feather patterns on the head:

I covered the stomach, added a little more clay to the wings and then used the toothpick again for more details:

I decided to add more clay to the neck in the end, but it isn't necessary to cover the whole form. The celluclay sticks so well that if smoothed down, it doesn't fall off once it is dried and painted.

Once I did the first, I went back and made a couple more in different ways:

 The one on the left I added celluclay, painted black, and then added sparkles. The one on the right I just spay painted orange.


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