Last week, I gave you all some ideas and tips for fun and freaky Halloween decorations that can spruce up the inside of your abode. But what about the outside? If you live in a home with a yard or porch/balcony area, this provides a fantastic addition to showing off your Halloween-y adoration.
The website HomeBNC has a lovely article that you can check out here if you want some great tutorials and ideas. A couple of my favorites from this site include Hanging Spider Sacks and Haunting Hooded Ghouls.
Another thing that is quick and easy to do and helps creepify your porch or balcony is just pulling some cheesecloth or natural cotton scrim around the railings or from the ceiling, hanging down. If you’re feeling extra crafty, you can dye this black, grey, or tan to give it an extra edge.
Nowadays, you can purchase orange colored string lights. These are just as fun to simply wrap around trees or through bushes as they are to hang across your porch. However, you can also take small plastic hollow pumpkins (usually found at places like your local craft or dollar stores), poke holes in the tops or bottoms and slip them over the individual lights. Viola! String o’ lighted pumpkins! (You can also hood the lights with orange Solo or Dixie cups. Draw Jack’O’Lantern faces if you like.) This can be hung or strung as usual or you can tape/staple it down to the top of your balcony or porch railing to display a cute row of glowing pumpkins. (Make sure that you don’t leave them on all night because the plastic could become too hot and melt, creating a fire danger.)
Want something a little extra creepy? Go buy a skeleton head and arms and stick it into the ground. You can have it look like it’s crawling out from under that big old oak in your front yard or it can be clawing its way out from under the front porch. If you have a felled log or slab of rock in your yard that you consider a terrible eyesore, use it to your advantage. Have this be the thing your skeleton is emerging from underneath.
The best thing I can suggest for your yard or outdoor areas are to use your imagination. Every space has unique aspects to it; use the items around you, incorporate them into your decorations. It can make it feel more authentic!
Humble Bundle is a site we won’t mention often, but one that certainly deserves recognition. The company makes agreements with mostly game publishers and book publishers to get items it bundles together for a low cost that can then be purchased. Not only are these costs low, you can actually choose how much you want to pay for it. Seriously. Only have a dollar? That will get you some of the professional quality items. Notice I did only say some as obviously the more you spend the more you get. Typically only requiring a minimum of $10-15 to get all the items in that week’s bundle. So besides getting games or books for a very low cost, the humble part of this that part of the money goes to charity. There are actually sliders at the bottom that let you chose how much money goes to the publishers, charity, or back to the site. This also means you can pay well over the minimum and donate most of the money to charity. You can even chose which charity you want to donate to if you so wish.
So what does this site have to do with crafting? Well normally nothing as the topics of the bundles varies often, and the video games tend to take the spotlight over the comic or book bundles they may be offering. Not so this week. This week they are offering a bundle deal on some excellent cosplay and prop making reference books.
Paying even just $1 gets you ebook versions of Make: Getting Started with Adafruit FLORA; Make: Wearable Electronics: Design, Prototype, and Wear Your Own Interactive Garments; Make: Design for 3D Printing;Kitchen Floor Vacuum Former; and the Adam Savage Moldmaking Primer. That’s a crazy amount of knowledge for only $1. There are 2 other minimum tiers ($8 and $15) and you get not just that level but all the books at the previous tiers as well. So for a minimum of $15 you could be the proud owner of 14 books all about cosplay design that will help you make the best costume possible, while also making a donation to charity. It’s a crazy good deal; one I’ve already taken advantage of since books on prop making will certainly help with the various crafts I do.
The offer ends in 8 days from the date of this post (around noon EST on Oct. 26th, 2016), so you have some time to think it over. If you’ve ever wanted to make better props or costumes though, now is the time to get great professional resources.
I talked about props a few weeks back, and today we’re revisiting that. A lot of work goes into props that we might think nothing of. Take this scene from the Agent Carter:
Its a scene from Season 2, and while there isn’t any acting going on, the letter, the ring, it tells a story and evokes feelings for those who understand the implications.
When considering costume props, we usually think about big things- weapons, etc. But something simple like stationary can be hugely effective.
For Agent Carter, Avengers, and Captain America fans, Barton Bones Cosplay (otherwise known as Triskelion Prop Shop) has some amazing offerings. I got his Agent Carter dossier in the post yesterday and was floored.
Not only is the quality amazing, but the feelings that came up having her funeral card in hand was astounding. It is nothing more than ink and paper, but it brought me to tears.
So when you’re thinking of props, consider the lesser spotted ones. Sometimes all you need is a file folder full of paper to make your costume stand apart.
Barton Bones Cosplay can be found through Facebook or on Etsy.
Its been a good year for Star Wars, and for Star Wars crafts too. So in a break from our regularly scheduled Cosplay series, I thought it would be good on Star Wars Day to revisit some of the most interesting Star Wars crafts we’ve highlighted that you can do today to keep in theme. From origami to woodworking, there’s a lot out there.
So, if you’re anything like me, you left the new Star Wars movie in love with lead character, Rey. 😀 As with any character I fall in love with, I start to research cosplay options to see if others have discovered any tips/tricks that I can use. One very kind cosplayer made an in depth tutorial on how to make Rey’s Staff that she uses in the film.
Her tumblr name is takiki16, and she is wonderful as her whole process was very clearly documented via pictures and detailed descriptions; including measurements! She calls it a “quick and crappy” version but her method is easy (and low cost!!) and thanks to the solid wood core it’s considerably sturdy so she should really giver herself more credit.
Definitely check her tutorial out if it’s anything you’ve been considering. Now I just have to call my local Home Depot about wooden poles…
Continuing with yesterday’s prop theme, today’s feature is all about a wonderfully made plush by the artist Piquipauparro.
Originally designed four years ago in August of 2011, this custom piece was a commission for a Rapunzel cosplayer. It is completely hand stitch with heavy vinyl material that was then painted afterwards to mimic the chameleon’s coloring in the movie. The neat part though? They gave him an internal armature to allow complete control of his limbs, tail and head. While not to scale as he is portrayed in the movie (they wanted something more noticeable) his 22″ size is quite an impressive bit of plush making. Piquipauparro does sell their plushies, but only by commission. You can see more examples of their work in their gallery or contact them directly through DA, Etsy, facebook and, of course, email. 🙂
The human body can be one of the trickiest subjects to draw/sculpt. We see the form everyday so as soon as something is slightly off your subconscious will pick up on it right away. As an artist, I’ve always found pose references to be invaluable…but limited. Unless you got someone you know to pose for you, if can be very difficult to find the right view point you need help with. Well, today I’d like to share a great free resource I discovered. It’s a website called posemaniacs, and they have an incredibly helpful in browser pose adjuster.
As you can see in the menu on the right, it’s also not in English so you’ll have to go through and select everything to see what your options are. The top three are their CT scans for parts of the male body. Specifically the Head, Torso, and Foot. The torso is the default selected when you load the page and does feature the male genitals so if that’s not something you can handle then skip that one.
The main focus of this flash based tool are hands. That’s what about 75%-85% of the options are, but hands can be one of the trickiest things to draw so I welcome the options to see a hand at different angles. Everything is completely rendered and you can easily click and move your mouse to rotate the image to your desired position, as well as use your scroll wheel to zoom in and out. While it won’t make any complex poses at the moment, it’s a great tool to help with tricky parts of the body, as well as techniques like foreshortening.
Have you ever wanted to learn how to make molds and castings? Do you already make molds and castings and want to improve? I just learned that Smooth On has intensive two day seminars to learn the techniques and get hands on, direct teaching.
As a crafter that has thought of mold making this was really exciting news to me. I have always thought about candle and soap making but have been scared to try to do it on my own. If I can find time to fit this into my schedule, it is something I am seriously considering.
There is a downside though. Smooth On launched these classes at the beginning of the year so they are filling up fast. There are only two sets of dates still available, 10/30 & 11/01 and 11/11 & 11/12. All of the classes are at their Pennsylvania facility. So if you are interested, check out the information on their website.
Do you make molds and castings already? I would love to see your work and get inspiration! Head over to the forums and show me what you can do.
Saturday March 14th was the ultimate Pi day. Pi is of course 3.14159. I was at the Indiana Comic Con and decided to celebrate Pi day by spreading the love with miniature pies.
I shared these miniature pies with all of the amazing crafty people I found at the Indiana Comic Con. Every Saturday in April I am going to share pictures and give you information about these crafty people.
Galvin Leatherworks and Rebecca Nipper had a great booth with a ton of leather goods, jewelry, and art.
An essential part of some cosplay, masks allow us to reinvent ourselves and show the world a different side. Ravenwood Masks creates these pieces of art that are stylish and add that extra pop to any costume. Alyssa has won awards for her masks and believes they are a way to reveal parts of yourself that are hidden behind your everyday face. Masks create an opportunity to explore our sense of self in a new way and release hidden energy.
She doesn’t only make stunning masks for stage and personal use, but she makes unbelievable and accurate cosplay masks.