Saturday, September 28, 2019

Spooky WEARABLE Art Roundup For Halloween!

It's not quite October yet, but I am LOVING all the Halloween goodness flooding my feeds. So to help get you in the spooky spirit, too, I thought I'd do a themed round-up this time - and with an emphasis on WEARABLE art. Because let's face it: even if we're out of wall space, there's always room for more jewelry, pins, and accessories!

 Let's kick things off with Bill Robinson of Flim Flammery, and his delightfully cartoony raven pin:

I love this style, and the the bright pink shadows! 

Bill also has lots of great art prints, including this not-so-monstrous giant squid:

Shop more at his Etsy shop here.


My friend Dennis Hansbury makes spooky art year-round, but his latest mini paintings are FRIGHTFULLY good:

This one's my favorite. Plus it's so small Dennis is talking about making it a piece of jewelry!

I dig it.

I think you guys will like Dennis' cat skull stickers, too:

 Head over to his Etsy shop for more, then follow Dennis on Instagram to see when his newest mini-paintings go on sale.


This Jack & Sally necklace is the first thing that made me fall in love with Lisa Penney's work, and I've been following her online ever since:

You can still buy it as a necklace OR an extra blinged out brooch on her site!

Lisa also makes these incredible "Brooch Babes," & I want them all:

They're hand painted with fabric skirts and customized accents, and you can wear them as a pin OR display them as art, because they come with  their own little stands! Eeee!

It's almost impossible to pick a favorite, but I especially love the Haunted Mansion girl in the purple dress, plus this one inspired by the Hat Box Ghost:

Check out Lisa's online shop for these and LOTs more of her art, including t-shirts! Then follow her on IG to see the new stuff as she makes it.


More for you Disney fans: Le Petit Mouse is another of my favorite makers, and her Halloween offerings this year are blowing my mind. I'm pretty sure these are the most beautiful Mickey ears I've ever seen:

 Both the ears and the center bat have a color-shifting holographic finish that is absolutely spell-binding. (Get it? :D)

She's also making Zero pins with a similar ghostly finish!

Wednesday, September 25, 2019

Back To Dragon Con! My Favorite Flash Portraits of 2019

MARTY! We've got to go back. 

Back... to Dragon Con.

I've been putting this off while I work on too many upcoming projects (Halloween is gonna be LIT, yo), but I finally finished all my flash edits from Dragon Con, which now seems like a million years ago. Going through these has me all excited again to show you my favorites, though, so buckle up.

First my only non-flash shot, for your last look at sunlight this post:

This is my friend Emily as Sarah from Labyrinth, in Sarah's rarely cosplayed cosplay dress! (From the first scene of the movie.)

  I wish I'd had flash for these to give them a little more oomph, but we weren't set up at the time. You can still see all the lovely details, though. Em made everything herself!

Now, let us turn to the dark side - or rather, the Dark Crystal side:

Aughra is wearing her outfit from the new Age of Resistance show on Netflix, and DANG. She looks like she stepped right off the screen! (Best quote from John: "Wait, she's a good guy? AND STILL THAT CREEPY LOOKING?" Ha!)

A stunning Storm:

And a spot-on Grandmaster & Valkyrie from Thor: Ragnorak:

 With his melt stick!

Officer Dangle from Reno:911 cracked me up with his action pose:


I'm all about Rose's giant hair in Steven Universe, and this cosplayer nailed it:

Sunday, September 22, 2019

Wrangle Your TV Remotes With My Easiest DIY Yet

You ever have one of those light bulb moments where you think you may actually be a genius?

I had one last week, and ever since I've been stupidly excited to tell you guys about it, so thank goodness I finally have pictures.

Quick back story: we finally got new chairs in our game room (yay!), but they have no storage (boo).

Our old chairs looked like this:

(Look at baby Suki! So tiny!)

Our new chairs are separate recliners, which meant we needed to replace the lost storage - and cup holders! - of this old set.

So John built a fantastic little storage table to go between our new chairs - essentially a wooden version of what you see up there - but the TV remotes were still always in the way. (To be fair, they were always in the way with our old chairs, too.)

 Can you believe John made this?? It's OK; if I hadn't watched him do it, I wouldn't, either. 

(Pro Tip: Those cup holders are less than $10 on Amazon, and you could drill holes in your existing end tables to install them. Just saying, if you have cats, cup holders are a GAME CHANGER.)

I promise I AM getting to the remote wrangling, but first look how nifty this is:

And no, this isn't the easy DIY to wrangle your remotes. I'm not THAT mean. [evil grin]

In fact, even though our new table is brimming with storage, our 3 remotes always ended up on top, where the cats knocked them off... and then they were always on the floor. Grrr. 

I turned to Amazon, and found this thing called "The Remote Wrangler."

That's when I had it.  MY MOMENT OF GENIUS.

Anyone else seeing what I'm seeing in those silicone remote holders? 

I'll give you a sec.


Here it is, my Mad Scientist cackling-in-the-moonlight moment:

Thursday, September 19, 2019

Mickey's Not-So-Scary Halloween Party 2019

I debated holding off on this post 'til it was at least October, but real talk: this is already my phone's
 lock screen:

 (I left the watermark off so you can use it, too!)
So yeah, I'm ready to go all-in on Halloween. 

Besides, it's still 90 degrees here in Orlando. LET ME HAVE MY PREMATURE AND WHOLLY ARTIFICIAL FALL.

So c'mon, let's head over to the Magic Kingdom for Mickey's Not-So-Scary Halloween Party!  

 John and I'll take care of the sweating, you just sit back in your A/C wonderland and enjoy. :p

Our costumes again. They were as comfortable as we could hope through the rainy, 85 degree night.

We went with friends who kindly snagged us a cast-member discount on tickets. Like everything at Disney, tickets aren't cheap - starting around $80 each - but we hadn't been to the Halloween Party in years, and wanted to see the new shows. 

Being me, I was immediately distracted by all the fun costumes people were wearing. It was too hot for anything super elaborate, but folks went all-in with the park specific references, like this:

This one's for the hardcore Epcot fan who knows they shut down Club Cool this month. Those are the Fanta, Beverly, and Bibo sodas. Nonsensical anywhere else, but here? CELEBRITY STATUS.

We arrived a bit late; you can enter the party as early as 4pm, but we didn't roll up 'til 6:30. That meant I only had about an hour and a half of sunlight, something I dearly missed later when I was chasing down costumes in the dark. I was willing to make that trade since it meant less hours in the heat, but if you plan on going yourself, definitely get there at 4 to take full advantage!

Disney fans who dress up are some of the sweetest people on the planet. When I asked these two for a photo, he immediately quipped, "Only if we can have one with you!" Then they insisted we all get in for a selfie. In fact John and I had so many great interactions with people, I had to stop myself from making it weird by asking random strangers to be my friend.

Parade time! I don't have many photos - everything came out blurry in the dark - but here are a few lucky shots:

Monday, September 16, 2019

My Finished Hei Hei Costume!

How YOU doin'?

I know a lot of you already saw our big costume debut on Instagram/FB, but lets make this official:


Or should I say, "Bu-CAAAAWK!"?


John and I put these together in about 5 days, just in time to go to Mickey's Not-So-Scary Halloween Party at the Magic Kingdom last Friday.  

I've already heard from quite a few of you planning to make your own Hei Hei costume for Halloween, so let me show you how I made the rest of my outfit, and link to the things we bought for John. Ideally you'll have more time than we did, and can add even more fun elements!

The most important part is the hat, of course, which I've already shown you how to make. (And I've already seen someone finished her own! Woot!)

My outfit was basic color-blocking, so look for yellow/orange clothes on the bottom and and teal/green on the top:

If I wear this again I think I'll layer a bright yellow tutu over the shorts, just for extra poof and giggles. I found a great one on Amazon for $13, so I've got that on standby.

My feather collar is made completely from craft foam, with a little ribbon to tie it. I used 4 different shades of orange and yellow foam; the more colors you use, the better it looks.

Start with a bib necklace shape, sort of like this:

Ignore the holes; I eventually realized I could hot glue the ribbon instead of knotting it, hah. You'll also want to trim the sides to be only as wide as the ribbon strap; these are too wide, so I had to cut them down later.

Cut a bunch of thin pointed slivers out of your darkest color foam, and arrange them into a pointed V like this:

You want the middle point to reach just below your bra line, or midway down your torso. Then angle the sides UP, so you don't get a weird boob shelf. If you don't have boobs to get in the way, then never mind this bit.

When you're happy with the length and shape, hot glue the slivers in place.

Now build up with your other colors, layering them over top of each other:

When you reach the top, use your brightest yellow strips to wrap OVER the neck line edge, gluing them down on the back side:

This will give you a clean edge and help strengthen the whole collar.


The collar held up like a champ for the 8 hours I wore it, and I only had to adjust it a few times when the strap from my cross-body bag shifted it to the side. I really thought it'd be destroyed by the end of the night, but this thing went through rain, sweat, and abuse, and still looks fresh as a feathery daisy. YAY CRAFT FOAM.

You can really see all 4 colors in the sunlight.

My Boat Snacks bag - which doubled as a purse AND a candy sack - started as a $4 canvas bag, also from Michaels. I forgot to take a 'before' photo, but it looked like one of these:

Friday, September 13, 2019

The Punniest Cosplays of Dragon Con 2019

I always love a good mashup cosplay, but if there's a pun involved then I am over the moon. Lucky for me, Dragon Con is THE place for clever and groan-worthy costumes, so let's take a look at what 2019 had to offer.


(This is Rebecca Buress - a friend and FOE who helped organize the Epbot meetups!)

And she's in search of the Winter Smolder! Ha!

The Sailor Moon Scots:

The two red pom-poms were my first clue, then as I got closer I spotted the Sailor Moon symbols on their kilts and the ribbons on their shoulders.


That's Davros/Bob Ross, for those of you rusty on your Doctor Who villains. On the back he has a Bob Ross painting that reads, "A brother from another mother," and "Happy little accident."

And speaking of everyone's favorite Time Lord...

Doctor Who:

TARDIS scrubs and a scarf stethoscope! Love it!
(This is Diane, another FOE at our first meetup!)

Stevie Wonder Woman:

Wednesday, September 11, 2019

Quick Craft: Let's Make A DIY Hei Hei Hat For Halloween!

On Monday John and I found out we're going to Mickey's Not-So-Scary Halloween party this weekend (EEEE!) so we need some last-minute costumes. 

And I would apologize for posting Halloween content this early, but I feel like this is the crowd that's already shopping for new skulls and huffing pumpkin spice for breakfast, so... hopefully we're good. ;)

Now, John and I want something cool (it's still 85 degrees at night here), comfortable, and funny, so naturally: Hei Hei and Tamatoa from Moana.

These will be sort of extreme Disneybounds: still using mostly regular clothes, but then over-the-top, costume-y accessories. This is totally different from, say, Dapper Day 'bounds, because we're leaning WAY into the ridiculous as well as going for theme park comfort over style.

My inspiration: both in life AND for this costume.

I quickly found some comfy options in my closet for a decent Hei Hei 'bound:

(That's a tank top under the cardigan, which I would wear with the sleeves pushed up.)

Now to ACCESSORIZE - and get to the crafty part of this post.

I looked all over Google for Hei Hei hat inspiration, but everything I found was heavy fleece or crochet or built into a hood of some sort, which is all WAY too hot for Florida. 

So I set out to make something on a cotton ball cap, instead.

I won't keep you in suspense: here's a peek at the finished product:


Are you intrigued - or laughing hard enough - to keep going?


Let's begin.


John found everything we needed at Michael's for about $8: a red ball cap, one large Styrofoam ball (which I've already cut in half there), and sheets of craft felt in red, yellow, and purple.

The only other things we used - and already had - was a little batting, hot glue, and some stretchy white fabric. The white fabric is technically optional, but it looks better and also holds better, so I highly recommend it.

 For the eyes, cut the large Styrofoam ball in half, then use a craft blade to slightly hollow out the back sides, aiming to fit the curve of the hat. They don't have to be perfectly flush with the hat, but keep carving 'til you're happy with how they sit.

You can hold the eyes in place with pins through the underside of the hat.

(Also if you ever need to make a Fly costume, HERE YOU GO.)

At this point I've also covered each eyeball with a stretchy white fabric. (I flipped over a stretch velvet to use the shiny backside of the fabric, but spandex or stretchy nylon would also work.) 

NOTE: Make sure you hollow out the back side of each eye BEFORE covering them in fabric.

Covering the eyes with fabric is time-consuming but easy: just stretch the fabric around to the back and pin it, angling your pins towards the center of the eye so you don't stab yourself. Start with the four "corners", then work your way around:

Sunday, September 8, 2019

Some Bunnies To Love: The 2019 Dragon Con Bunny Hutch!

Every year Dragon Con kicks off Thursday night with the Bunny Hutch costume contest and party, where everyone is invited to dress as a fandom-themed Playboy bunny or "Heff". This is where you'll find some of the most hilarious and insanely creative fandom mashups of the whole con, making the Bunny Hutch a can't-miss, quintessentially Dragon Con affair. I mean, where else can you see a bunny Ponda Baba serving Blue Milk martinis?

Or Edward Scissorhands with topiary "ears"?

That's what I love about the Bunny Hutch; this isn't just folks throwing on a pair of bunny ears and a tail. These cosplayers go ALL OUT, pouring just as much love and craftsmanship into their Thursday night bunny suits as they do their Saturday afternoon showpieces.

Here's a bunny Wampa and Boba Heff:

You can just see her fuzzy Wampa leg warmers!

Effie from Hunger Games:

(It's hard to tell from this angle, but she has two gold bunny ears off to one side.)

I absolutely love it when the ears are themed to fit the character, like Shredders' blades here: