Friday, October 30, 2009

Crafty Friday: Spooktacular Crafts

We made a few Halloween inspired crafts yesterday to decorate our house before family comes into town for the trick-or-treating fun. I’m not one for all of the scary, gory, give me nightmares Halloween decor…I’m more of the cutesy pumpkins and friendly ghosts type. So for our crafts, we decided to make a family of coffee filter ghosts [super scary] and a BOO banner [ultra spooky].

Here’s what you need:

-scrapbook paper in shades of black, white, and orange
-coffee filters
-cotton balls or pompoms

Super scary coffee filter ghosts are super simple to make. Just take a coffee filter and put a couple of cotton balls in it like so:


Gather up the edges and pinch the coffee filter together underneath the cotton balls and secure with a ribbon.


Finally, draw a couple of eyes on your ghastly ghosts and hang them up.


For the BOO banner, you first need to print out the letters B-O-O in a font of your choice. [I used Castellar, font size 300] Then, cut your pendants. We took black construction paper and folded it in half with the long sides touching. We measured down 9 inches on the folded edge and made a mark. From that mark, we drew a diagonal line to the corner of the paper.


Next, cut along the line and unfold the paper to reveal your triangle.


For the scrapbook paper, first fold the paper in half. From the folded edge, measure out 3.5” along the top of the paper and make a mark. Then, measure 8”from the top of the paper down along the folded edge and make another mark. Draw a diagonal line to connect the marks and then cut along the line. Unfold to reveal the triangle.


Glue the decorative pendants on top of the black ones so that a half inch border is created. Cut out each of your letters you printed off and glue one letter on each pendant.


Next, punch holes in the top two corners of each pendant.


Finally, cut a long strip of ribbon [I think ours was about 3.5 feet] and weave it through the punched holes. Hang in a desired place.



Happy Crafting!

Nessa Dee

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

A Spider and a Butterfly


It’s done…it’s finally done! Well, kind of. I have to tweak the web a bit which requires the patience of one little costume wearer, but for the most part, the spider costume is done. Whew! The costume was pretty simple to make and really cheap. I spent less than ten bucks for the whole thing.

Here’s what you need:

- Four sheets of 9x12” black felt (Hobby Lobby, .25 each)

- 1 sheet of 9x12” white felt (Hobby Lobby , .25 )

- Three pairs of black gloves (Target, 2 for $1)

- 1 black knit hat (Target, $1)

- 1 black turtleneck (Wal-Mart, $3.50)

- 1 pair of black pants (closet, free)

- Roll of white yarn (Wal-Mart, $ 1.47)

- Poly-fil (had on hand) If you don’t have poly-fil, you can use old trash bags.

You’ll also need either beginner sewing or expert glue gunning skills. :)

Step 1: Take the pieces of black felt and trim the long side of each piece so the felt measures about 7x12”.

Step 2: Fold each piece of felt over so the long sides are touching and sew or hot glue the edges together like so:


Step 3: Turn each tube inside out.

Step 4: Take two pairs of the gloves and stuff them until they are filled out enough to look like a hand.


Step 5: Sew or hot glue each glove to one end of each tube. Make sure the thumbs are all pointing in the right direction.

Step 6: Stuff each arm leaving enough space at the end to pinch the felt together and secure it with a seam or hot glue.

Step 7: Sew two arms to each side of the turtleneck, below the sleeves.


Step 8: For the web, have your child wear the shirt and hold out their arms. While holding out their arm, measure three pieces of yarn for each side that will be used to attach the two fake arms to the sleeve of the turtleneck. Here’s where I got a little lazy. I just tied the yarn to Finn’s wrist, wrapped it around the middle arm, and tied it to the bottom. I want to put a stitch in the string on each arm to hold it into place, but until he takes the costume off, I’ll have to wait. [I have a huge spider sitting on the couch, watching TV at the moment]

Step 9: For the multiple spider eyes, cut out six circles of white felt [two small, two medium, and two large] and six circles of black felt [smaller than the white circles]. Arrange the eyes on the knit hat and either stitch or hot glue them into place.

Step 10: Make your reluctant child go outside and pose for pictures. [He’s supposed to be wearing the third pair of gloves, but they’ve disappeared somewhere in the spider’s room.]





As for Audrie’s monarch butterfly costume, well, I’m not going to explain how I made it. It’s not that I don’t want to share, it’s just that, like a lot of my projects, I winged it [no pun intended], and any explanation would probably be more confusing than instructional. So I’ll just show you the pictures:

monarch4 monarch5


monarch7 monarch1


nessa dee

IF: Fast



Fast food.


nessa dee

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Sneak Peek

I think the spider costume making process has been cursed because I have yet another setback. I happened to buy Finn a black girl’s turtleneck instead of a boy’s, and while I’ve almost convinced myself that it will be ok to stick my son in a shirt with puffed up sleeves and pleats, I don’t think it will fly with his father. The good news is that Audrie’s costume is coming along quite well. Here’s a sneak peek of her monarch butterfly wing:



Alright, back to work…


nessa dee

Sunday, October 25, 2009

Keyword: Hope

I might have mentioned in my last post that I “hoped” to have a costume made and ready to show you on Saturday, but as you probably noticed, I didn’t get around to it. I was going to start the costume after I tidied up the house a bit, but one thing lead to another, and I ended up cleaning out my closet and the garage. I didn’t start working on the costume until 3:30PM. Since I had to take my daughter to a soccer game at 4PM, though, I didn’t have a lot of time to work. But Sunday was a new day, and after church I planned to continue costume making. What I didn’t plan on was having an unfortunate encounter with a gas pump which resulted in my spending a good portion of the afternoon scrubbing gasoline smell out of my hair, my clothes, and my left eye. Once I got the odor to a tolerable level, I tried yet again to sew the costume. My sewing machines decided that they wanted nothing to do with costume making and went on strike. After breaking two needles, changing thread and bobbin many, many times, ripping out countless knotted seams and plotting to watch my sewing machines burn in a heaping ball of flame, I brought out the glue gun. And no, I’m not finished yet. My “hope” now is to have a spider costume made for my son by Halloween night, even if it means gluing a bunching of pipe cleaners to a black shirt!

Here are some random pics:building1


gum2trix1Audrie     pinwheel9


rays DSC_0357




nessa dee

Friday, October 23, 2009

Crafty Saturday, Perhaps?

If you read the previous post about my super abilities when it comes to churning out work under pressure, then don’t read any further because certain truths about my powers will be revealed. Such  creative endeavors are only accomplished if I neglect certain aspects of my life, like sleep, or bathing, or crafting with my kids. Hence the reason why we don’t have a Crafty Friday to post today. Also, my patience tends to run thin when I’m being rushed, so not only do I look and smell like a monster, I act like one, too. But now that I’ve returned from roaring my terrible roars, gnashing my terrible teeth, rolling my terrible eyes, and showing my terrible claws, my hope is to post a special craft project tomorrow if I can get it done. Finn wants to be a spider for Halloween, and in an effort to kill two birds with one stone [I like to do that], I’m going to post our approach to making a costume. I don’t have a pattern, just an idea, so keep an open mind. :)

And since I don’t ever like to have a pictureless post, here’s what’s been occupying a lot of our time lately:





Until tomorrow,

nessa dee

Thursday, October 22, 2009

I work better under pressure


I was contacted last week and asked to participate in a consignment deal with a great local team of crafters. I responded with big ol’ “SURE, I’d LOVE to partcipate!” only to realize that I had no inventory to offer. That was Sunday night. On Monday, I started working on some new paintings. Knowing that space would be limited, I kept my paintings small. I cut small squares of canvas and began sewing on different little characters. On Tuesday, I made a deal with myself that I could only work on the paintings after I finished an illustration[the previous post] oh, and homeschooling my kids. So when that was done, I sewed buttons onto each of the paintings, ran to Home Depot to get some stretcher boards, came home and cut them to size [all 32 pieces], made the frames, stretched the canvas, and painted the backgrounds. Wednesday consisted of painting fine details, and sealing each of the pieces. By Wednesday afternoon I had 8 mini paintings and 2 large paintings packed and ready to be dropped off last night. I know…call me superwoman.

bird1 house1

whale bird2






Just don’t drop by my house when I’m in this manic rush of creative output. You might figure out that my super abilities don’t apply to housework, or self maintenance.


nessa dee