Happy Halloween everyone! Sometime today, y’all should hop on over to The Fabric Alchemist! Meris invited me to do a guest post over there today – it’s focused on some of the cosplay musings I’ve been pondering since DragonCon. While you are over there, make sure you check out some of the cool stuff Meris has been working on lately – I’m especially a fan of her recent Leliana cosplay she did for PAX Prime. And if you are lucky enough to be in the Pacific Northwest, she’s doing some workshops next month!

Since it’s Halloween AND Friday, Penny and I are at the office in costume. As of the moment I am writing this, I still have not selected which costume I am wearing, but I made Penny’s this week.

Toothless from How to Train Your Dragon.

I drafted the pattern myself, and had all these delusions of grandeur regarding how I was going to use wire to hold up wings and the dragon head. I did a bunch of measurements on Penny first, and used an existing doggy shirt as a guide.  Here is the pattern I created – two pieces.  The sequence below shows a lot of the work in progress.

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I used felt for the eyes and more crushed panne velvet, this time in dark purple, for the body of the dragon. The head part of the dragon was essentially turned into a pocket to house some wire, and the wing pieces were done similarly.

It was a quick sewing project, and here is the outcome.

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Super cute, right?  (Even if you can see wires popping through on one wing…)

But it was very uncomfortable for her – she was walking all weird and funny.  And looking at me with this face.

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So I took out the wire pieces and just made it fabric. Not quite as impressive, but still fun. Maybe next year I’ll give this a Version 2.0, where I bend the wire into a single piece instead of multiple connecting ones.  Here is what the costume looks like now, without the wires.

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The droopy wings are a bit anticlimactic after seeing how she looked with that majestic wingspan of 10 min earlier.  It was my first dog costuming experiment, and I deem it successful, even if it wasn’t perfect.  ;)  Enjoy your Halloween!

 

There were quite a lot of changes that I made to the two costumes I made for the Renaissance Faire last weekend.  I started with Butterick 4571 for the dress and Simplicity 4059 for the men’s costume.  Here is a shot of the finished costumes.

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The dress was constructed with plenty of time, but when I had a few issues when I took it to be fitted on my mother-in-law.  I used a satin to line a nice stretchy crushed panne, and the sleeves wound up a bit restricted.  Additionally, I had an issue in that the top of the dress at the waist wound up larger than the skirt did at the waist.  So after doing the fitting exercise, I came home and made some significant changes, deciding I had to not care what the inside of the dress looked like if I wanted it to fit and be done in time.

Dress Changes:
– Removed lining in back of bodice and top of sleeves
– Added panel in back
– Loops and tie back

Below you can see the added panel and the loops & tie closure I added in the back.  This is actually closer to the original design of the pattern, which I had decided to forego in lieu of a zipper. When the zipper didn’t work out, my friend, Suzanne, suggested something like this, and it was a fantastic idea.

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My biggest note on this dress is that the sleeves don’t play nicely with the square neckline.  At least with the fabric type I chose, velvet and crushed panne, the sleeves wound up being so heavy that they tugged at the shoulders of the dress, making it hard to stay up.  We wound up securing it with fashion tape (love that stuff) and added a safety pin at each shoulder to keep the dress where it was supposed to be.  The sleeves were a little bit long, too, so we pinned them up a bi underneath the oversleeve.

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In terms of the men’s costume, I did very little by the book.  I made a version of this costume that combined some elements from View A and some from View B.  I also took a lot of shortcuts to make the costume easier to sew, since I had a very short amount of time.

Peplum coat:
– bias tape armholes and collar

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– no lining
– removed sleeves (hence the need for the bias tape)
– stitched front together and fake buttons (you’ll have to see those in the finished photos)
– loop tie back

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Neither of these costumes was meant to have a zipper.  This one when in very nicely, but when I went to zip it up, the zipper came off the track.  It was all I could do to seam rip it, and I gave the coat a tie closure with loops much like the ones on Debbie’s dress.

Pants:
– elastic

I basically made a pair of short capri length pants with elastic at the waist and bottom of the leg.  This was way easier than the fancy pants that came with the pattern, and likely saved me a ton of time.

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Shirt:
– no lining
– no interfacing
– elastic cuffs
– bias tape
– shortened sleeves

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Turns out I didn’t have enough fabric to make the shirt completely long sleeved, and I certainly didn’t have enough fabric for a lining.  Since it was going to be worn under the coat anyway, I decided not to worry about it.  I threw a strip of bias tape across the front of the shirt because the seam wound up on the outside (ooops), but it was gonna be hidden under the peplum coat anyway, so why not?

Hopefully Debbie and Wendell can reuse these costumes somewhere – Halloween or a future Ren Faire visit.  They looked great in them! Here’s one final shot of the whole family.

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This weekend wrapped up the traveling portion of October (4 straight weekends). I went to the Carolina Renaissance Festival up in Charlotte with my husband, his sister and her boyfriend, and his parents. You’ll remember I was working on making Debbie and Wendell costumes for the event as birthday presents.  Here I am at the entrance to the faire, near a sign that said Eat, Drink, & Be Merry (except in ye olde language).  And let’s face it, the word drink was more important than the word eat, so we cut it out of the shot.

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Anyway, I digress.  Here are the final costumes!

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Wish I’d had time to make Wendell a hat, but have I mentioned that October was crazy?  Both costumes wound up with heavy modifications, which I’ll talk about later this week. But my in-laws looked very dashing, don’t you think? :)

I wore my Elizabeth costume, since I did not get to wear it at DragonCon. It was Halloween day at the fair, so any costumes were welcomed, not just Renaissance ones :)

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It was interesting to see how this fair differed from the Georgia one. It had some of the same acts, lots of the same vendors and specialists, and mostly the same food. The parking was further away and the grounds seemed larger and more of a narrow snakey walk as opposed to more open space. There were lots of trees and shade which was nice, and the weather was beautiful. Here’s a shot of Debbie and Wendell with Amanda and Nick.

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We watched the jousting skills show, which was neat. Amanda and Nick paid to do one of the carnival style games – knife throwing.

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Nick even won a plastic spider! Best prize ever.

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Then I noticed that they had camel rides. Squeeeee! So I rode a camel. In a costume. With a random and cute little girl named Naomi. It was fun, definitely one of my favorite parts of the day.

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We continued walking among the vendors, and stopped to watch a blacksmith forge something during his demo. That was neat, but sadly I didn’t take any pictures.

This fair had more musicians and dancers performing and tiny stages around the area. That was neat, I loved stopping to hear the little bit of music and watch a dance here or there. These dancers had beautiful costumes, and I was amazed at their skills.

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As normally happens at Ren Fairs, we ate a lot of food. I vowed no chicken on a stick since that was just chicken fingers last time. We had steak on a stick and a turkey leg.  Here I am chowing down on the turkey.

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The turkey was better here, but the steak could have used more seasoning. And we had a broccoli and cheese bread bowl.  All in all, I might be getting a little disillusioned with Ren faire food… Sad.

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We had a great day, and I loved seeing Debbie and Wendell all dressed up together :). As we walked out, the guy from the fair who was trying to get people to rent costumes pointed to them and said, “These people are doing it right!”

 

As part of a Harry Potter Halloween event I’m hosting soon, I have tons of decoration plans.  Since I have had such a busy month, I only just started tackling this fun stuff.  I completed my first decor item this week, a quick and easy sorting hat!

What You Need:

1.  Cardboard witch hat (I purchased mine at Michael’s, though I can’t find a link)

2.  1/2 yard Suede or Faux Leather Fabric (Got mine from Jo Ann’s)

3.  Hot glue gun & glue sticks

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This tutorial is probably going to be pretty terrible since there wasn’t a lot of method to my madness here.  Here’s hoping it helps someone, though!

1.  Drape somewhere near the center of your fabric over the point of the hat.

2.  Using a reference photo, begin arranging fabric with ripples that resemble the Sorting Hat, starting from the top.

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3.  As you get a look you like, hold the fabric the way you want it on the hat, lift up the fabric below where you are holding, and place some hot glue near the spot you are holding.

4.  Press the fabric into the hot glue below where you want the fabric to bend, bubble, or drape a certain way.

5.  Rinse and repeat these steps, gluing from the top down.  Important features to place on your sorting hat include eyes (eyebrows?) and mouth.

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6.  Once the Sorting Hat’s face is glued, cut more fabric for use on the hat brim in the same manner.

7.  When you have completely covered the hat, glue the fabric to the underside of the brim.

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8.  Place it on your head and BE SORTED! :D

Here is my completed hat next to the reference photo I used while making it.  I wish I had exaggerated the eyebrows a little bit more, but I’m happy with it for the 15 minutes it took me to make this.  Have fun making your hats!

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The crazy month of October marches on. After returning from Disney last Monday, I had three days of work before our plane left Thursday night for NY to visit my family for the weekend.

Friday we went out to an early dinner at a local place before driving in some pretty terrible traffic to NYC for the Broadway showing of Aladdin.

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The show was really fantastic, and we had great seats in the center of the Mezzanine level (although the theater gave people less space per seat than airplanes do, felt so cramped!). I’ve seen Beauty and the Beast as well as the Lion King, and this show was on par with those two big hits. I spent a lot of the show gawking at the amazing costumes – so much sparkle, I wish I could have taken pictures to share here.  But you’ll have to settle for some that Google turned up.  Here is the Genie.

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And here’s an interesting shot of Jasmine’s wedding wear.  Amazing stuff, it is no wonder the costume designer won some awards for this work!

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One of my cousins, Christopher, got married on Saturday to Jacky from over at Itty Bitty City Kitchen. Congratulations and best wishes to the happy couple!

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The wedding was beautiful, and we got to spend a fun evening with the extended family. Here’s a shot of Jesse and I with my parents right before the reception opened up.

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I didn’t take a ton of photos during the wedding, and just focused on enjoying myself and spending time with all the good company.  However, we did have a great time with the photo booth that was at the reception, as evidenced below.

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Okay, switching gears!  During the short stay at my parents’ house, I spent some time in our basement spelunking through our old things. And though I ran out of time before I had even got close to finishing, I found some cool nostalgic stuff to share.

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Like this view finder cartridge. From Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer. There was sadly no view finder with it, but it brought back memories.

As a little girl, I loved no toys as much as I loved Care Bears and My Little Ponies. I haven’t unearthed any original ponies yet, but here are some attempted revival ones that happened somewhere in my years of high school.  So glad ponies are back now with the Friendship is Magic era!

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And here are just a few of the Care Bears. I also found some cars and a Care A Lot playset.  I can still name most of these … Wish Bear, Cheer Bear, Sunshine Bear, Friendship Bear, Goodluck Bear, Grumpy Bear … I don’t remember the one with the cupcake or the ice cream sundae though … let me know if you do!  I think the lamb is Gentleheart and the skateboarding one is actually the bunny cousin, Swiftheart.  Oh and the racoon is Wiseheart!

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And my sister had this DVD of my favorite Care Bear movie that she let me borrow so we can rip it from the DVD to our digital movie library.  The Care Bear cousins were always my favorite.

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I also found a few video games that brought me back – Kings Quest and The Longest Journey.  Longest Journey wasn’t from THAT long ago, 10-12 years ish?  I don’t even know which King’s Quest this is, but I will be popping it into my laptop to try and find out haha.

And during high school was when I first became obsessed with Star Wars, so there were bins of things to go through on that. I found an old history paper that I had somehow managed to do on Star Wars. Anyway, here are a few of my favorite items from my Star Wars memorabilia.

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Above is a tin of foil collector cards from the Empire Strikes Back.  Below, a neat watch and a framed stamp.

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These neat things (and the bunches of other fun Star Wars things I found but didn’t want to bore you with) will likely be making their way to be displayed in the loft or my craft room.  I also found an old report I did on Star Wars during high school, and as part of that effort I had written a letter to George Lucas, and received a response from his secretary.  I was young and foolish, but it was pretty neat to see that forgotten letter with the Lucasfilm, Ltd logo on it.

I found a bunch of old drawings I did – all Disney of course.  Loved me some colored pencils back then.  I definitely don’t just draw very often anymore.

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And guess what?  Remember when I found a bunch of random googley eyes while cleaning the craft room?  Apparently my mother hoards them in her basement as well.  Bet they don’t cost $.49 anymore …

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It was a great weekend, and I hope you enjoyed this little nostalgic trip down memory lane with me.  What were some of the things you grew up with that you remember fondly?

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Regardless of how many times I go to Disney World, the gate to the happiest place on earth still elicits a squeal of delight and some car version of dancing.

My husband and I went down to Mickey’s house last weekend with some friends.  We had a fantastic time – it was way too short.  I did not do a great job taking pictures this trip, but I should have enough to give you a run down of all the fun.

We stayed on property at Coronado Springs.  My husband and I have stayed there once or twice before, and it is a nice Spanish themed resort.  I had completed online check-in prior to our arrival, and we pretty much walked up, tested our Magic Bands, and away we went. Random side note – the bands are one size fits all, with a tear away gray rubber strip that makes them smaller.  Neat feature for sure … my band would have been giant on my wrist if I hadn’t removed the extra part, but it was just perfect on the last small setting.  The downside would be that with smaller band size, you have fewer band holes to put the neat little band decorations that they sell at the parks.

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They come 4 to a pack, and cost $10.  In my opinion this was completely worth it to buy a single pack and deck out both my band and my husband’s with Star Wars ones.  Yoda and my X-wing ones fit on my band, but just barely, whereas with the large band, Jesse would have been able to fit one or two more.

We managed to arrive on Friday with enough time to attend Mickey’s Not-So-Scary Halloween Party at the Magic Kingdom.  Everyone in our party had done this at least once before, but it has been nearly 10 years since the last time Jesse and I went.  They close Magic Kingdom to those who did not pay for a party ticket at 7 pm, and it is only the Halloween guests until midnight.  They have trick or treat stations (and they give you a bag), a fun parade to watch, and lots of decorations, character meetups, and special treats and sweets.  Also, even though the party starts at 7 pm, if you have a ticket to the party only, they will let you into the park as early as 4 pm.  We arrived around 6.  Oh, and most importantly, costumes are encouraged!  So of course I went as Hades.  Here is a shot of me in costume closer to the end of the night.

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It was fun to wear, I got a lot of compliments, and lots of people knew who I was.  My lights worked all night without the short turning them off, though I did lean against the button on a couple of rides and had to have Jesse turn the el wire back on again.  I opted for no gray cake makeup, and I was glad of that decision, even though it was made due to time limits.  I forgot bobby pins on the wig due to time, and that was less exciting to deal with.  Rollercoasters with an unsecured wig?  Not my best plan ever.  I was constnatly riding with one hand on the top of my head.  One semi-sad thing did happen – my skull pin broke.  On our way to the buses at the end of the night, the hot glued pin back just popped off the clay, and the skull shattered on the ground.  Oh well, I will make another.  Here are Jesse and I waiting for the Buzz Lightyear ride:

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We did a lot of rides at Magic Kingdom that night, including the following:  Space Mountain, People Mover, Buzz Lightyear’s Space Ranger Spin, Astro Orbiter, Seven Dwarves Mine Train (we were riding this during the fireworks, which was pretty nifty), the new Ariel ride in Fantasyland (not sure on the name), Haunted Mansion, Pirates of the Carribbean, and maybe one or two more.  We also trick or treated once or twice.  The candy givers were putting handfuls in each bag.  The most important thing, though, is this:

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Not only did I beat Jesse at the Space Ranger Spin, I walloped him.  Therefore it needed to be documented.

Saturday we spent the morning in Hollywood Studios.  We stopped at a Fast Pass Plus kiosk to try to get our party’s stuff figured out … the phone app was only showing 3 out of 4 of us, so we couldn’t use it for Fast Passes effectively.  Until they make some fairly big changes to the app, I recommend going to a park kiosk (preferably one of the more out of the way ones) – the cast members are knowledgeable.  We had our Fast Passes lickity split.  We tromped our way to Muppet Vision 3D, which is one of Juliet’s favorite rides.

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And of course, we needed some silly pictures in 3D glasses while we waited for the movie to begin.

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After that, we hit up Star Tours, which I am pleased to say has changed since the last time I rode it.  It needed that pretty badly.  Though honestly, it could have been changed years ago, and I just haven’t been in that long.  Once we were done there, we hit up the Rockin Roller Coaster for our final ride of the morning.  Then it was time to head back to the hotel for siestas.

We headed to EPCOT that evening, and paused at the gates for a group photo.

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Our stay at this park was short-lived as Jesse had forgotten some meds in the room and we had to return for those.  We pretty much only rode Test Track and had started around the World Showcase before we left.

We ventured back out that evening to the Magic Kingdom again, which had extra magic hours that night.  Upon our arrival at 9:30ish, the streets were PACKED, I guess due to fireworks?  We left that area quickly and wen to eat a late dinner, then started to do rides.  We rode just about everything from Friday again, but added in Big Thunder Mountain Railroad a few times, and Jesse and I rode the Teacups together.  Here is a trippy picture during the spinning:

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The park finally started emptying around midnight, but at 1 am we were still going strong!  Here we are waiting for Space Mountain.

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And at 2 am, we were somehow still awake.

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We got back to the room probably around 3:30 am and attempted to sleep.  Somehow my husband and I were awake again at 8 am.  We hit Animal Kingdom by around 9 am to do Kilimanjaro Safari (I was pleased that they dropped the poacher chase part of that ride), where we saw many happy giraffes.  And then we caught a relatively short line for Expedition Everest, which we had only ridden once before.  After that we left Animal Kingdom and headed to Disney Quest for the main part of the day.  We played some arcade games, a few music ones, did an alien invasion VR thing, rode magic carpets collecting gems, and ate lunch.  It was fun, but the place was not very crowded, which made some of the games a little less appealing (like bumper cars with cannons).  Regardless, these tickets were a perk of when we booked, so it was free to get in.

After that, we napped for a couple hours, and then met up with our friends for a trip to EPCOT.  We rode Spaceship Earth, and walked through the Food and Wine Festival at the World Showcase.  I think we also rode a boat in the Mexican pavilion.  Then we finished up the evening by watching Illuminations.  Here was my first dish at the festival, a beef stick with chimichurri sauce from Patagonia.

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I enjoyed the food and wine festival a lot, tasted a bunch of yummy things.  Here is a Mongolian Beef pocket from China:

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We also tasted some beef tips from South Africa, bratwurst and a pasta / cheese / ham dish from Germany.  Jesse had a scallop from Scotland.  Unfortunately, we were full by the time we were about halfway through the countries HAH.  It was still quite a nice way to end the weekend.

All of our feet were quite sore from all the walking.  Our most active day was Saturday, with nearly 28k steps.  So much aching, but definitely worth it.

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There was a lot of construction at Animal Kingdom and Downtown Disney.  I can’t wait to go back (there is a family vacation planned for late next year)!

If you’ve been reading for a while, you might remember a little cake pop adventure Elizabeth and I endeavored on two Christmases ago that ended in failure. I haven’t tried to make cake pops again since, being as scarred as I was. But with Halloween at the end of the month, I knew I wanted to try making them again, and work gave me a good excuse.

Yesterday was Cupcake Wars at Sparc. I’m lucky enough to work with my sister-in-law (along with a TON of other amazing people) and we entered this competition together.

I learned a lot during this bout of baking. Made the from scratch red velvet cake on Monday evening (using this recipe). I made 12 cupcakes…

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A small square pan of cake to turn into more traditional cake pops (mixed with homemade cream cheese icing)…

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And used the leftover batter the next day (yep, batter works just fine when refrigerated in a container overnight) when this arrived:

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Those of you who know my husband know he is a picky eater. He’s not a fan of traditional cake pops where the icing is mixed into the center, so we decided to buy this thing (~$20) and give it a shot, hoping for a more cakey pop.

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The last time I did this, the cake pop material didn’t harden enough and the chocolate covering wasn’t cooperating. This time, I left my “traditional” cake balls (the kind where you crumble a cake and mix icing in with it) in the freezer overnight, and researched how to properly thin out the white chocolate.

These things made a HUGE difference!

For the record, I used about 1 tbsp of canola oil for every 10 white chocolate pieces (I bought the Wilton bags), while I was melting. You want a consistency where it is running off your spoon, like so:

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Here are the pops as I am coating them in chocolate.  The ones upside down in the stand are much more spherical and came out of the maker.  The hand-rolled ones were larger and a bit more oddly shaped.  It’s a preference thing on which you like better, though both are tasty. Hubby likes the cakey ones, I enjoy the hand-rolled ones a bit more, they have a bit of a fudgier texture.

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With the ones that came out of the cake pop machine, you definitely want to dip the Popsicle stick in chocolate first and then insert it. Let the chocolate harden a bit before you coat the rest of the pop (as seen above).

Since we are doing a Harry Potter party at the end of the month, I attempted to turn these into a likeness of the golden snitch. Basically I used edible gold spray to color them, and I drew out a bunch of wings with some melted white chocolate.

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However, the wings were very breakable, and didn’t make it onto the pops, as you can see above :(. It may have been because the chocolate was mixed with the oil. Next time I will use pure chocolate. Or maybe I should have frozen it. Regardless, it did not work as I had hoped – back to the drawing board.

I’m pretty happy with these cake pops – they tasted pretty good, and they looked way better than the last attempt!

We didn’t win any prizes in the competition, but there were sooooo many yummy treats! Here are some pictures of some of the entries.  From left to right there are Groot cupcakes (squee!!!), maple bourbon cupcakes (these were the overall winner), cute witch cupcakes, some butterbeer snitch cupcakes with successful wings, and some chocolate cupcakes with caramel sea salt icing.  Personally, I loved the butterbeer ones!

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It’s super awesome to work at such a fun and geeky place :)  The Culture Club at the office has planned a fun-filled month of events – Cupcake Wars was just the beginning.  By the way, we are hiring!

 

I’ve been continuing my work on the Renaissance fair dress (using Butterick 4571) by adding sleeves. These are somewhat complicated and include a lining as well as an oversleeve.

The pattern has you work on the upper sleeve (which includes the oversleeve) first, so here I am connecting the oversleeve to the top of the arm.

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I have now used crushed panne velvet for three costume dresses – this, Elizabeth, and Lady Amalthea – and there are things about it that I love and things that I wish would change.  I love that it is stretchy.  I love that it does not fray.  I love the shiny texture.  I love that it is reasonably priced.  I do not love that it moves a lot when sewn.  I also don’t love that it leaves fuzzies on other fabric occasionally. It’s not slippery, just moves due to its stretchiness.  It’s one of those fabrics that is a little bit sneaky and sometimes you stitch an unwanted fold into a seam because it moved unexpectedly.  Anyway, this was a bit of a tangent, but I continue to have a love hate relationship with this fabric.

I’m lining the sleeves in the same deep red satin that I used on the bodice.  This terrifies me because I’m afraid it won’t fit my mother-in-law.  I haven’t sewn very many things for other people, so this is just a generic fear.  But since the dress AND sleeves have a lining, that just doubles the ways I can fail at it.  Anyway, here is the completed top part of the sleeve, with the lining still turned out.  I love this contrast fabric!

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Next it was time to sew the bottom part of the sleeve, and of course, its matching lining.

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And now the confusing part.  The instructions were not actually terrible, though the pictures left a little to be desired.  To connect the bottom and upper parts of the sleeve together, I had to make these nifty sleeve burritos.  Looks tasty, no?  And not at all uncomfortable, hah?

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Bottom sleeve lining up, I lined up the underarm seams, pinned the heck out of it at the elbow spot, and stitched.  I was a little afraid that my spatial reasoning may have turned against me on this one, but when all was said and done, the correct sides were in the correct places. HUZZAH – they are so pretty and flouncy!

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This is where I have left the project for the evening.  The next step will be my least favorite – slip stitching the lining on the sleeves closed at the elbow.  I did more spatial reasoning and have concluded that my sleeve should look something like this before I start the slip stitching process (which will, of course, include lots of grumbling and much cursing).

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The goal will be to stitch the folded / ironed seam on the left so that it hides the crap on the right, but without stitching through all my fabric layers.  Meh.  I haven’t slip stitched in forever (maybe since this coat??), probably time to review the skill I guess.  Once slip stitching is complete, a bit of decorative stuff for the sleeves, and then attaching to the shoulder seams.  Which is about perfect since Debbie will get to try this on over the weekend!

I’ve been slowly working on a dress for my mother-in-law to wear to the Renaissance Faire we are going to near the end of October, using Butterick 4571 for a pattern.

Like a lot of the things I make, I can’t seem to leave well enough alone – I have to embellish.  I also blame some of the craft room reorganizing since I likely only did this because I found the trim and fabric remnants.  Anyway, I added an applique to the center front piece of the dress.  It seemed too plain.  Enter the leftover gold lame fabric from Rainbow Dash and some very pretty trim that just happened to match the burgundy crushed panne velvet fabric perfectly.

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Can I just say that I hate how there is such a discrepancy in the length of that right red piece??  It will be fine, the dress is quite long anyway and needs to be hemmed.  But oye.  Anyway, here is a closer shot of the trim.

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I also have finished the bodice of this dress, with a nice satin lining (yep, still hate sewing with satin…).  It’s a slightly different burgundy, but hey, it’s lining.  And it was in my stash, so hooray for using it!  Here is an in progress shot of the bodice, also showing the lining on the left.

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This is coming together pretty well, but not without problems.  I’ll spare you the details, but the bodice connection to the skirt left a good two inches extra on each side of the bodice.  I have fixed it for now, without cutting it completely off – it’s hidden inside the lining until I can do a fitting with the wearer in a couple of weeks.

I hope to get the sleeves done this weekend – they look complicated and are lined.  The inside of some bell pieces on the ends will be done in the white rose print.  Should tie together nicely.  I don’t know how much time I’ll have to work on this during the week as work is super busy as the moment.  But next weekend for sure.

That’s it for today – short and sweet.  Happy Monday!

Wouldn’t cleaning be so much better if it just happened with a flick of a magic wand?  I bet Molly Weasley could teach me a spell.

MollyWeasley

No?  Maybe I need to investigate methods of acquiring a house elf instead.

Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 1

Perhaps I could train the dogs to clean for me?

HouseElfPenny

Penny is a good house elf look-alike, but her cleaning skills leave something to be desired.

Despite my decided lack of house elves or a working scourgify charm, I spent much of last weekend reorganizing my craft room.

BeforeView2

Before I got started, I headed off to Bed Bath & Beyond, armed with lots of coupons. Luckily, the store was having a clearance sale on its college dormitory stuff, so there were good prices to be had in addition to my coupons. I bought some shelves and baskets and closet organizers. Target supplemented my finds a bit, and they were also trying to get rid of form stuff on clearance, yay!

After returning home and banishing myself to the loft that I recently cleaned and decorated a bit for my husband, I spent a bit of time putting the shelves together.

And finally I was ready to clean! But where to start?!

BeforeView1

Some of my time was spent unpacking boxes of things that went to DragonCon. Sometimes I went downstairs to bring up various crafty things that had made their way downstairs prior to the convention. Some of my time was spent shuffling through and rearranging the fabric stash.

Most of my time was spent finding random shit I did not know I had. O.o

Some things I found:
-A ton of Sculpey clay; I forsee some clay jewelry projects in my future!

TooMuchSculpey
-Googley eyes

GoogleEyes
-A bunch of steampunky chains

-Ribbon

-Leatherworking stuff

-Spray paint

-Glass bottles

BottlesAndSprayPaint

-Fasteners

-Corset supplies

I have a lot more to do yet. But I have made significant progress. I do have a fairly large box that I will eloquently label “Random Shit”, where I will place stuff like wooden dowels and various sized styrofoam balls.

Random

Once this is done and we have acquired an upstairs tv, I intend to move my sewing machine back up. Deirdre has already returned to her place in the corner.  And the fabric stash in the closet is under control.

Closer

Well, maybe I should say it it stacked neatly?  Fabric stashes aren’t MEANT to be “under control”.  And mine is not.  I still have like 6 yards of the velvet from Lady Amalthea (I have NO IDEA why I bought so much of it).  I need to find a good project for all of my scraps.

So far I am liking how it is coming together.  I’ve setup a folding table for cutting.  My storage methods seem to be working.  But I might need another shelf or two before I’m done.  We’ll see what the weekend holds.