Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Halloween Fish Costume

My daughter wanted to be a mermaid for Halloween this year and I found a mermaid tail at a store, so then I thought my son has to have a coordinating costume, right?

Here's what I came up with. I googled "fish costume" for inspiration... ok well I first googled "fish costume" to see if I could find a cute affordable and good quality costume for sale, because I really haven't ever made a costume before, but no such luck. So with a few photos in mind I went to Walmart and bought a couple of yards of felt and some ping pong balls.

I spent at least an hour cutting out scales by hand, but my husband and I are on a Battlestar Galactica Netflix kick, so I cut them while watching those and the time went by quickly.

I used one of my son's sleeveless summer onesies as an idea for the general shape, but I made the costume much larger than the onesie to fit over any cold weather clothing he might need to wear. Then I cut the body out of felt and sewed on the scales. I used some of my daughter's glittery tulle left over from her tutu to give the tail some shimmer. The eyes are ping pong balls cut in half with sharpie marker circles on them.  I used hot glue to attach them to the cap.

The basic shape is this- A tank top like shirt with a tail in the back.  I just winged it on the fin size and shape in the back and on the head piece.

Click here to see another blogger's version- inspired by mine.  Very cute.

Monday, October 11, 2010

Stamped Washer Mother's Bracelet

My mom asked me to make my grandma a washer bracelet for her birthday this year. She wanted all of grandma's children's names on the washers. This is what I came up with.

Here's how to make your own.

You will need:

beading wire- enough to go around your wrist twice and then a little extra
stamped washers (here's a good tutorial)
findings- clasps and crimps

Start out by threading your wire through a crimp to make a small loop. Close the crimp with pliers to complete the small loop. Then begin threading your beads.

Once you have threaded a few beads it's time to thread a washer. String one strand through the washer.

Add a bead to the string. This bead will be in the center of the washer.

This is easier to see in the photo than to describe, but I'll try. Take the other strand of wire and thread it through the washer hole on the other side of the washer. String it through the bead and out the other side of the washer.

It will end up looking like this. There is a strand of wire on each side of the washer to hold it in place, and both wires go through the bead in the center. Continue stringing beads and washers until you've reached the length you desire. Then string a crimp and your clasp.
Pull your wires back through the crimp...
and through a few beads.

Pull on the loose ends to tighten. Lay the bracelet down and make sure it's not too tight to make an easy bracelet shape, and then clamp your crimp with the pliers. Snip the loose ends of wire and make sure they're covered by the beads.

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Quick Hors d'oeuvres

Whenever you need a quick snack for a party, or when you're having guests over, here is a yummy, fast recipe.

I'm not sure what to call these. Maybe they should be "Biscuit cream cheese puffs," or something like that. If you have a suggestion, leave it in the comments.

You will need:
-about 1/3 of a package of cream cheese
(fat free cream cheese or neufchatel cheese is also acceptable)
-1 can of biscuit dough
-garlic salt

Open up the can and separate the biscuits.

Cut each biscuit into four pieces.

Add a bit of cream cheese to each biscuit piece.

Roll up the biscuit around the cheese.

Lay them all on a cookie sheet and sprinkle with garlic salt. Optionally you can brush the tops with melted butter.

Bake at the temperature suggested on the biscuit can, but for a slightly shorter time. Take them out when the tops are lightly golden.

Sunday, October 3, 2010

Floor Cushions For Kids

I found a tutorial online for this adorable cushion, so here is my version. This project is found on the blog Living With Punks, and it's the Tutorial: Land of Nod Inspired Floor Cushion.
I made it exactly as described in the tutorial, except for the way the circle was made. I don't have a compass. Before I found this project I almost bought one at the back-to-school clearance sales, but I thought, "What on earth would I need a compass for?" and didn't get one. It would have been easier, but if you don't have a compass, you can just use a ruler. Mark an x in the center of your circle and, keeping the corner of your ruler on the 'x,' make small marks (see my blue dots) about an inch apart all around your circle at the 8 1/2 inch mark. Cut it out and use it as a template for the other circle.