Sunday, October 31, 2010

Making Halloween Horns

This is kind of a Hall Hollow-ish post because the kids did the project with me tonight, but because it's a how-to I'm sticking it here.

I did a set of these for myself the other Halloween, and I wore them this year to work.

Horns.jpg picture by teljchall
A little girl liked them, so I said I would make some for her. I decided to do unicorn horns, one for her and one for her twin sister. They have long blond hair, I couldn't resist.

To make these you need:
Aluminum Foil
Heavy clear fishing line
Insane desire to have horns

You'll want two pieces of foil really, one to make a cone for the inside of your horns and one to protect your table from the sculpey and paint.

Start with a toothpick and a long sheet of foil, three feet should do for three to four inch horns. The toothpick is a placeholder for when you need to string the horn. You fold the foil several times until you have a strip. Then you place the toothpick perpendicularly about 1/3 of the way down the strip. You fold it over then wrap and twist the foil to make a horn with one or two wraps of the foil going below the toothpick and the rest making a cone on top of it. The foil core makes the horn bake evenly and prevents cracking. It's also cheaper than a wad of sculpey.
I form the cone and then flatten the base by shoving it into the table so it stands well and will sit flat on the skull. If you want a curve to the horn, now is the time to make it.
Roll out the sculpey into snakes and flatten the snakes. I use a roller and small strips of wood on each side so I have a nice even thickness, again, so it bakes well. The flat ribbon of clay is wrapped around the aluminum cone, and you put a layer of the clay on the bottom too. Smooth it all together then apply any decorative strips of clay you desire to make it pretty... or ugly... or gnarly.
Bake according to directions on the package. Remember that sculpey can be baked longer than recommended but NEVER hotter than recommended.
When cool enough to handle remove the toothpick. Paint and then thread in the fishing line. I make the line about the size of the head then tie a loop on each end. Then the ribbon is threaded through each loop and you can use it to cinch the horns on tight and tie the ribbon. You can also use a few bobby pins on the fishing line up top if you like.

Like I said, I did this today with my kids, ages (almost) 10, 8, and 6. I have been working very very hard on controlling that impulse to "fix" my kids projects. I still have to do most of the work for my 6 year old though because, well she's 6 and a bit spoiled.

They are drying now and I just snapped a pic.


The two white ones are mine of course. The other one in the back is Jordi's. I ended up doing most of the work on hers, she put holes all over the place and painted it though. Jay's is the redwood-red and white one. Tali's is the bloody looking one.

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Halloween 2010

My kids watch a lot of Netflix. Mostly they watch Avatar (Airbender not blue people.) I enjoy watching it too, which is good because I would have been lost when they told me what they wanted.
So if you aren't familar with the characters, here is the official site for each of the ones the kids picked this year:



Here is how they turned out:

P1020618.jpg picture by teljchall

A few notes:
James wanted to be Ang, but I nixed the idea when he insisted I could come up with a way to make him airbend. Sorry dude, I'm not putting fans up your sleeves. The thing on his head is a white swimcap that I put make-up on to fleshtone and sewed a section of a wig onto. It made his ears stick out, but he wouldn't wear it over them. The weapon is made of a ball, a coat hanger, a few oven liners, cardboard and aluminum tape.
Talitha helped make her costume. Her father didn't much like the idea of her first sewing experience being on a serger, as he lost a duel with one once, but oh well, she can meet a regular sewing machine later.
Jordan went through all the female characters before we settled on Katara. I just couldn't let her be Azula.

Saturday, October 23, 2010

Face Painting

I love to do face painting, I really do, except for one thing, the monotony. Even when presented with a variety of options, kids tend to pick safe things, hearts, flowers, spiders, rainbows. You can only paint just so many hearts in a day.

So I developed a plan to show kids how cool other options can be. I made a big board with pictures of faces with a variety of options.


Then I dressed up in a medieval gown and painted my own face.

P1020614.jpg picture by teljchall

I painted faces for seven solid hours and only did about 10 hearts, 2 flowers, and 5 rainbows. I got to do old age make up twice. I probably did fourty different "Fairy masks" and nearly as many "Batman masks."

Spiders, however, will be a favorite no matter what the season, and there is no getting around that.

Friday, October 22, 2010

The Witches Brew

This is something that I cooked up at work for an event later this month. I left the lettering to my friend, I just did the fun part.
IMG00083-20101014-1926.jpg picture by teljchall


Tuesday, October 5, 2010

S&ST #8

Glitter ball = $3.75
Candle jar ring = $4.99
Crystal ball that is "magically" unbreakable= Priceless

P1020481.jpg Crystal ball picture by teljchall

Friday, October 1, 2010

Bath remodel

I'll start off by saying I had help with this one. Joe and the handy man did the tub/shower, toilet, and sink install, plumbing, drywall, electrical, and helped lay the hardi-backer for the tile. I just did the demolition, clean up, remaining hardi-backer, painting, trim, tile, shelving, caulking, grouting, threshold laying, hardware hanging, and decor.

I'm going to show you this picture first, because in it you can see the inspiration piece. When I decorate I have to have one thing I use to tie the room together, something that puts in my mind what I want the room to be. I found the canvas print above the toilet at... ahem... Wally World. The gray scale nature scene called to me and I realised I could build a bathroom around it. Gray is the hot neutral these days.

P1020462.jpg picture by teljchall

I didn't know what I was going to do for cabinetry, until I went on vacation and saw this in our hotel bathroom. This is where you picture me with a wicked grin and a light bulb over my head.
IMG00048-20100813-2307.jpg picture by teljchall

I didn't HAVE to do cabinets. I could do cubes, squares, like tiles, and the picture! The rolled up towels would also mimic natural shapes!

To go with the print I also had printed a bunch of b&w photos of nature that I have taken. Naturally they are edited liberally and didn't look much like this when I took them, but I am quite happy with the results. I also covered a jar with gray seashells and purchased some brick-a-brac to throw in or paint and throw in.

So without further ado, this is my hall bathroom:

Oops, forgot the "before" pictures, I snapped these right before I got out the crowbar:

IMG00059-20100910-1016.jpg picture by teljchall