Monday, December 9, 2019

Behind The Balls: Our Labyrinth Christmas Party Progress Update, Part 2!

Our most studious stalkers already know this - or anyone who happens to be Facebook friends with one of our guests - but the big Labyrinth Christmas party all went down Saturday night.

And it was GLORIOUS.

You'll have to be patient with me, though, because as much work as the party was - and WOW was it a lot of work - it's another long haul to document it all to show you guys!

So while I gather and edit and fuss with getting all the glamour shots just right, here comes the second half of our build photos. This way you'll know how we did everything you're about to see in the Big Reveal posts later!

Starting with the surprise crowd favorite of the night, our Bog of Eternal Stench Bathroom.

That's more carved pink foam to make the door plaque. John used the Dremel with a pumpkin carving bit to carve the words, but a soldering iron can also work! (Just watch out for the fumes, they're toxic.)

The foam is so light we were able to stick it to the door with poster tack.

John went Hog(gle) wild with the Bog, so our guests got to experience a full canopy of mossy branches overhead, stones underfoot, and a sound track of non-stop farting and Ludo complaining about the smell. Even the most stoic personality was reduced to helpless giggles after just 10 seconds in there.

I realize this looks terrifying, but that's only because it is.
 (Here's the shower curtain we used. It's the perfect boggy backdrop - there's even a rope bridge!) 

 John built a contraption in the bathtub - essentially a giant T bar of plywood - that holds all the dead branches overhead. Our tree in the backyard is an endless supply of dead branches, so this was a cheap project.

BEHOLD OUR PROFESSIONAL SETUP. Ha! The painter's pole in the corner is holding up a green flickering spotlight, which looks suuuuper cool through the canopy.

John collected the Spanish moss himself from a nearby parking lot, grabbing whole bags of it to disinfect and dry in the front yard. (Gotta keep those neighbors guessing!)

He also bought this rocky contact paper to cover the entire floor:

Saturday, December 7, 2019

Orlando's Festival of Trees Part 2: Mini-Trees, Wreaths, & THAT'S NOT DAVID BOWIE

I thought it might be awkward to bounce back and forth from our Labyrinth Christmas party stuff to Festival of Trees again, but lucky for me I found the perfect segue in the Festival gift shop:

I can hear the marketing director now: "We need an ornament that is almost, but not entirely, exactly unlike David Bowie."

Also now I want to start a Holiday Wrecks blog. The mascot would be a T-rex in a Santa hat, and this would be my first post. 

Quick, someone slap some sense into me.

Plus I'm happy to report there are no more wrecks in THIS post, because I have so many more Festival favorites to show you:

Starting with some frosted Frozen vibes in Arendelle Aqua!

I liked the wreath behind it even more than the tree:
This has a subtle nautical touch, and I loooove the copper patina ship wheels and creamy gray foliage:


Because we're in Florida, of course we had a Jimmy Buffet inspired tree, ha:

So fun! Flip-flops on the tree skirt, and then Santa in a grass skirt:

The ornaments were all drinks and parrots and cute turtles, including a few from Margaritaville. just fabulous, happy stuff.

The topper on this mini tree reminds me of tentacles - anyone else see it?

I'm sure that's not what they were going for, but if you had an undersea theme going it would be perfect!

Another interesting topper: they set a wreath down in the top of the tree so it looked like a holiday nest for the owl!

Isn't that clever? I want to experiment with using small wreaths for tree toppers now.

The name for this wreath was just "Shoes for the Holidays" - but you KNOW what song it was inspired by, right?

Wednesday, December 4, 2019

Deck The Halls With Balls Of Bowie: Our Labyrinth Christmas Party Update

"How you turn my world, you precious thing PARTY. 

"You starve and near exhaust me."

Well, one out of two, anyway.

Soooo... hi!

As the countdown to our Labyrinth party ticks down John and I are swinging wildly from the depths of despair ("NEVER AGAIN") to the highest levels of giggle-fueled inspiration. ("Wait! The 'Toby Toss' needs CRASH HELMETS!")

Needless to say, this party is going to be completely ridiculous. 

Here comes a whole slew of props and projects, in no particular order.

(Fair warning: there are a LOT of double entendres coming with this party. We've decided to embrace them for maximum hilarity - so if ball jokes offend you, BEWARE, AND GO NO FURTHER.)

The last knocker sculpt I showed you got scrapped entirely; the Model Magic was a VERY bad call, and cracked all over. Not to mention it's not a good choice for sculpting fine details.

So I started again with these pink insulation foam layers, layering them up with tin foil:

(How's that for nightmare fuel?)

Then my friend Karen helped me again to sculpt a whole new face out of cheap air-dry clay:

This clay was so soft and easy to work with that it made a world of difference:


 The trick was to keep the clay wet, so it wouldn't dry out and crack. We spent 2 nights refining it, then immediately handed it over to John to make a brush-on silicone mold:

Sunday, December 1, 2019

Orlando's Festival of Trees 2019

It's officially December and time to talk TREES, my tinsel-loving friends! John and I made our yearly trek to Orlando's own Festival of Trees, and I brought back alllll the pictures of my favorites. So let's dive in!

First a quick look at one of the lobby displays:

I really like the combo of evergreen trees with stick trees - and the fake snow skirts with lights under them! If I didn't have cats to worry about I would so be trying that.

Ok, let's start in the main foyer with the big BIG trees, where this sparkly blue monster was on a rotating base. So fancy.

(Shout-out to the OMA for doing a great job this year of matching the wall art to the trees!)

This tree is a LOT to look at, but my favorite parts were the branches sticking out the sides:

I'm all about dangly branches sticking out of trees. Very fun.

Here's a close-up. Look how the blue poinsettias positively GLOW:

I tried to take close-ups like this for a bunch of the trees; it was fun finding just the right section of ornaments to get the prettiest shot.

Across the foyer from Super Grover was this lovely Victorian style vignette:

Serious Grand Floridian vibes here - you Disney fans know what I'm talking about!

The tree is erupting with branches, bird cages, and butterflies:

With more of the same on the swoon-worthy mantle:

Here's a tree close-up:

Such a pretty color scheme with the wine, lime green, and gold.

Remember when mannequin tree skirts were all the rage? Well, we still have one hold-out:

With colors like these, I'm not complaining. They managed to make tree branches and trim look like peacock feathers! So pretty!

Let's move into the other galleries with this red-and-rustic number: