Archive | October, 2012

Monster High Art

28 Oct

Hey All!  I’ve been hard at work trying to think of something to ad to my Etsy stock . . . and here’s a sneak peak of my “collection”.

Since most of my inventory is boy friendly, I wanted to add a little girlyness to my store.  Also, lets face it, I’m getting tired of only painting boy stuff!


Since these Monster High Dolls are wickedly popular (see what I did there?) I decided they would be a great addition.  And they are so cute!

Obviously I’m not finished here, I’ve gotten 2 completed so far.  I won’t be stocking every Monster High character, there are so many of them!  But if you are interested and don’t see the one you want in my store, shoot me an email and I’d be happy to paint it for you!


Lego Ninjago Costume

21 Oct

And now . . . the moment you’ve all been waiting for . . . I give you the Lego Ninjago Halloween costume!  (loud applause and cheers!)  Ok, ok.  You don’t have to cheer an applaud my hard work on this fabulous costume.  BUT, I can tell you that Big A wore it last night to a local Halloween festival and he won 1st prize in the costume contest!  He was so proud you would have thought they gave him a gold medal and $1000!

You may have noticed that Legos are quite popular at the Dummy house.  And most recently, the Lego Ninjagos are the greatest thing since sliced bread.  Naturally when we asked Big A what he wanted to be for Halloween, he said the Green Ninja.  Well, you can buy a plain ol run of the mill ninja costume, although I couldn’t find a green one anywhere.  But who wants to buy a costume that everyone else will be wearing when you can MAKE a one of a kind costume instead?

What you need:

  • cardboard-preferably corrugated cardboard as it is very sturdy
  • hot glue gun
  • box cutter
  • spray paint and spray primer
  • felt
  • exacto knife
  • painters tape
  • measuring tape
  • black permanent marker

For the body: I started out with a moving box.  I opened it up, cutting at the seams of the box until I had a flat sheet of cardboard.  I cut at an angle because if you look at a Lego mini figure, they are shaped like a triangle without the point on the top.  So I cut the front, leaving 2 large tabs for the shoulders across the top.

For the arms, I laid Big A’s jacket on the floor and put the cardboard over it and used that as a template for where the arm holes should go.  Big A was in bed, so I couldn’t just measure him, which would have been the easier method!  I cut out the arm holes large enough for Big A to move comfortably with a sweatshirt on underneath.

I used hot glue to glue all the seams together.  The front panel glued to the side panel, side panels glued to the back panel, and the shoulder tabs bend from the front and then glued to the back panel.  (I really hope that makes sense, I’m not a great tutorial writer!  Sorry!)

For the head: The head was a large sand pail I found on clearance for $0.50.  It was the perfect shape and color for a Lego man’s head.  For this part, I placed the pail on Big A’s head first to see how it sat.  Next, I took it off again and measured from his shoulders (where the bottom of the pail sat) to his eyes so I would know where to cut the eye holes.  Using an exacto knife, I cut the eye holes out.  This was a little tricky, it isn’t easy to cut a round shape out of plastic with a knife.  The knife kept wanting to go in a straight line, and I had to be very careful not to crack the plastic.

Since Big A wanted to be the Green Ninja, we bought a can of green spray paint.  VERY IMPORTANT: You have to prime the cardboard and the plastic BEFORE you spray paint them!  If you don’t, the paint will run and drip and will not stick to the plastic or the cardboard.  To paint the body, I just painted the whole thing, easy peasy.  It took 2 coats to get it totally covered, and I used a hi-gloss paint.  For the head, I covered the eye area with painter’s tape, making sure there was a rounded part of the yellow that would show through the “shroud” of green paint.  Again, it took 2 coats and I waited 24 hours before very carefully pulling off the tape so as not to peel the green paint off with it.

I outlined the eyes and face mask area with black permanent marker.

For the accessories on the body, I used colored felt and copied a picture we have of the Green Ninja.  I cut out the felt in the shapes I needed and hot glued them in place.

To keep the head from moving around when Big A walks, I added velcro to the inside of the pail, and another piece to a Winter hat.  That way they stick to each other and he can turn his head and the pail turns with him.



Here we are at the festival, Big A the Green Ninja and Little C as Curious George. 


Big A won 1st prize in his Ninjago costume at a local Halloween festival last night!  He was super excited!  If you like it a whole bunch, feel free to pop over to this costume contest and vote for him!


Of course, I think my kids look adorable in their costumes!  But it’s even more special since I made both of them, and even though there are a ton of kids out there dressed like ninjas and monkeys . . . mine are unique and special and they love them and that is really all that matters!

I’m Not Lion, That’s a Monkey!

17 Oct

You may have noticed that Little C LOVES Curious George and pretty much everything monkey.

Naturally, when we asked him what he wanted to be for Halloween, he said Curious George.  Ok, so Momma can go out and spend $50-$60 on a costume he will only wear a few times and then most likely it will sit in the dress up bin until it is outgrown and then head to Goodwill.  OR . . . Momma can make a monkey costume.  Ah, but one problem, I really don’t sew.  Hmmm . . . What’s a girl to do?

I have this gift you see.  I can look at something and see it as many other things, or being used for many other uses most people would never dream up.  I was at the thrift store (love that place!)  looking for a monkey suit or something similar.  I didn’t find a monkey, but I DID find a lion!

How does one make a lion into a monkey you ask?  It’s not super easy!

First, I had to remove the lion face from the hood.  I used a seam ripper and popped that face off, it was kind of creepy and horror-movie-esque.  Then I gave the lion a haircut.  I made a HUGE mess cutting all of the fuzzy mane off.  I tried using a hair clipper, but that wasn’t working so I had to just used kitchen scissors.

The lion had long claws on each paw, which I also cut off.

I opened the existing tail and shoved some pipe cleaners in it so it would stand up and curl at the end a little.  Then I covered it in brown felt.

I covered the belly in brown felt and, per Little C’s request, gave the monkey a belly button.

I made some felt ears and glued them to the sides of the head.  I bought a yellow hat for $2 at the thrift store and put a black strip of felt around it just like the Man with the Yellow Hat wears.  Little C was most excited about this part!

There you have it!  No longer a lion, but an adorable and unique Curious George costume!  Very warm too!  I plan to make a felt banana to sew onto the hand as well, but I was happy with how it turned out, I HAD to share it now!


































































If you like that . . . just wait until you see Big A’s Ninjago costume!  I’m saving that one . . .  it’s a surprise!

Fort Friday Loves US!

13 Oct

Hey all!  I’m so excited to show you this . . . Ever heard of the blog All for the Boys?  It’s a great family blog with fun crafts and goodies.  They have a weekly post called Fort Friday, and they showcased our tree houseCheck it out and while you are over there, make sure you look through all her other cool posts for great crafts, decorating and tons of other fun stuff!

Chunky Punkins

12 Oct

On the way home from work a few nights ago, I decided Big A and I needed to stop and get our pumpkins.  It’s a good thing we did because there weren’t nearly as many to choose from as previous years.  Big A and I decided to find the 4 largest pumpkins and bring them home to carve.  Boy, that was mistake number 1!  Did you know that the bigger the pumpkin, the thicker the walls of the pumpkin?  Well, I did not know that!

So Big A and I arrived home a little after 6 on a school night with the surprise pumpkins.  Naturally the boys wanted to carve them ASAP.  We chowed supper as fast as possible and set to work gutting the monster gourds.  The boys wanted to do a theme of favorite characters, and Hubby and I agreed that might be a fun change from the usual spooky and silly faces we always do.  Little C chose Spider Man, which was a surprise because right now everything is Curious George or at the very least monkeys.  Big A decided on Mario and I chose Hello Kitty.  We thought these would be simple faces to carve onto pumpkins . . .  mistake number 2.  There is nothing simple about carving spider webs into a giant monster pumpkin with 4 inch thick walls!

After 15 minutes of getting nowhere with trying to scrape the lines of the spider web into the pumpkin without carving all the way through, I had a brilliant idea: dremel.  For those of you who do not live with a hardware junkie, a dremel is a tool with a bunch of bits for many different uses.  Grinding, cutting etc.  VERY handy.  They probably weren’t designed with pumpkin carving in mind, but it was getting late and I was tired.  About 5 minutes of dremeling (no, that’s not a real word) and Spider Man was done, my hair was full of pumpkin ooze and the garage looked like a vegetable massacre had taken place in it.  Being that I was already covered in pumpkin guts, I took the tool to Hello Kitty as well.  My poor Hubby was still struggling with Mario’s mustache after I had busted out 2 pumpkins.  I have to give him credit though, because Big A drew Mario’s face and Hubby was desperately trying to keep the integrity of Big A’s drawing while carving the largest of the 4 pumpkins on steroids.

By the time he got to his own pumpkin, Hubby was sick of carving and opted for a run-of-the-mill Jack O Lantern face . . . but he used the dremel.  I do believe we will use that for all future pumpkin carving!

We did learn 2 VERY important lessons in this process though.  #1-The larger the pumpkin, that harder it is too carve.  #2-School nights are not designated for pumpkin carving.  We were up until well after 10pm carving and cleaning up our mess.














Happy Punkin Carving!

Not So Spooky Spirits

9 Oct

So as I am writing this my children are running through the house screaming at the top of their lungs while Daddy desperately tries to get them into their pajamas.  It is a losing battle for Daddy.

About 10 minutes ago they were quietly seated at the dining room table busying themselves making these cute little Q-Tip skeletons.  See why I do so many crafts with my kids?  They keep them seated and QUIET long enough for my ears to stop ringing.  He he he

What do you need?

  • Q-Tips, cotton swabs, whatever you call them.  About 20 of them will do
  • craft glue
  • construction paper
  • scissors
  • markers or crayons
  • google eyes
  • embellishments if you have fancy skeletons like we do!

Start by cutting out you head shape and gluing it to the construction paper.  Next, lay one full swab down the center for the spine.

Glue a full swab across the top of the spine for the shoulders, and another full swab across the bottom of the spine for the hips.

Cut 3 swabs in half and glue the halves on each side of the spine, cotton tip side out for the ribs.

Bend 4 swabs in the center for arms and legs.  Glue 2 at the shoulders and 2 at the hip in whatever pose you desire.  Big A Didn’t want his arms bent, but bent the legs and I think it looks a little like a monkey skeleton!  (But I did NOT tell him that)

Cut the ends off 5 swabs and glue on for fingers and toes.

Draw on a face, glue on google eyes and add accessories wherever you want.  As you can see, Big A and I made fancy skeletons.  Little C said skeletons don’t wear hats.

We used all the extra parts and pieces to make our names on the papers too.

Happy Haunting!

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Halloween Decor DIYs

7 Oct

Halloween is my favorite holiday.  I love the spooky decorations, the candy, the cool Fall weather, dressing up in costumes . . . it’s just always been a fun time!  I try to make all of October be Halloween oriented for my family.  We do a few different Trick-or -Treats, Halloween crafts and watch Halloween movies.

This year I decided to go all out with my outdoor decorations.  We live in a culdusac so there aren’t a lot of passers by, but it’s fun to get into the spirit of the sppoky anyway.

I’m all about upcycling, being thrifty and thinking outside the box.  I created our Halloween scene for $3.  I’m totally not kidding.  Here’s how I did it:

Spooky Jack O Lantern Luminaries

These were super easy, in fact Big A did most of the work.  We started out with 2 Clorox wipes containers and a plastic Folgers coffee container.  Took off the lids and painted them orange.  When they were dry, Big A drew on a Jack O Lantern face and I cut it out using an Exacto knife.  Then we slit the backs of them, slid them over our solar powered garden lights and they were done!  If you don’t have garden lights, you can just stick little LED tea lights in them as well.  Total cost: $0

Wooden Headstones

For our graveyard I had Handy Hubby cut some headstones out of plywood we had left over from the tree house.  We painted them gray and Big A painted the words and pictures on the fronts with black craft paint.  Handy Hubby made some stakes and attached them to the grave stones, then pounded them into the ground.  I attached a cool little black raven to one of the headstones with wire.  He was at the dollar store and I couldn’t pass him up.  Total cost:$1


I really wanted to make those cool chicken wire ghosts that are all over Pinterest . . . but I didn’t have any chicken wire.  I found an old white bed skirt and pillow cases and decided those would work for ghosts.  I tore strips about half up all the around so the ghosts would flutter in the wind.  I stuffed their heads with plastic shopping bags and duct taped them onto old cheapo curtain rods we had sitting in the garage.  I tied the ghosts to the rods, stuck the rods into the ground, and spray pained faces onto their heads.  Easy peasy.  Total cost:$0

Spooky Spider Webs

No special trick to these, just went to the dollar store and bought 2 bags of spider webs and stuck them all over my lilac bushes.  We had an abundance of spiders and other creepy bugs from previous years, so the kids stuck those into my webs.  We tied some little white plastic baggy ghosts into the lilac bushes too.  Total cost $2

Everything else was decor from previous years that I added to the mix outside.  A light up ghost, 2 ceramic pumkin luminaries, a hanging ghost and a few hanging bats.  We also got our hands on a huge spool of caution tape, so  I added a bunch of that for fun too.

So there you have it . . . my $3 Halloween decorations!  It was fun to put together and it’s fun to have it out there, and it has inspired a bunch of our neighbors so now these little graveyards are popping up all over the culdusac!