Tag Archives: halloween

decorate a pumpkin with nail polish

Confession time: I buy way too much nail polish, but I never use it. I can’t help it. I’m attracted to the fun colors. How can I resist? I love the idea of carrying around bright, cheery colors on my fingers and toes.  

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But the reality of the situation is that I have about twelve shades of beige and only paint my nails once every few months. I loathe waiting for my nails to dry – I’ve got things to do! – so I often go without. As a result, most of the polish I purchase sits on a shelf for years until it gets too gross to use.

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In addition to using immense self-discipline at makeup stores, I’m trying to find creative ways (water marbling!) to use my nail polish reserves. Of course, decorating pumpkins was at the top of my list.

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Crackle nail polish always seems to make a comeback around Halloween, and I couldn’t wait to plaster a pumpkin with it.

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I absolutely love this effect. It’s perfectly eerie for Halloween. I used Maybelline Color Show Shredded in Carbon Frost.  If you use crackle nail polish, be sure to apply two layers of base coat on the pumpkin. If you don’t apply the base coat, the nail polish won’t crack.

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I was perusing my favorite discount makeup store when I stumbled on this polka dot nail polish! This is definitely my favorite effect on the pumpkins. How fun is this?

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Mixing in a few treats with the tricks – I call this my cookies and cream pumpkin. No need to apply a base coat. Just one coat of the polka dot nail polish was enough.

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This textured nail polish (Sally Hansen Fuzzy Coat) is my least favorite of the effects. I had such high hopes for it. I think it would look cool against a black background, but it looked washed out on the white pumpkin and I was afraid it would blend in too much with an orange pumpkin.

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Oh well. It was still worth a try. Which technique is your favorite? 

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Quick Fall Craft: DIY Ribbon Pumpkin

A few weeks ago, the weather gave us the shyest hint that fall was coming and immediately I became more cheerful and optimistic. Fall always makes me feel hopeful and relaxed, like I want to take things easier, slow down, and just savor the season.

Naturally, at the first sign of browning leaves, I went straight to the craft store to stock up on my fall-themed craft supplies. Of course, I go straight for the most colorful aisle in the store – the ribbon section. I’m frequently attracted to ribbons, but can never figure out how to craft with them in a way that doesn’t look tacky. I thought I’d try my luck at shaping the wired ribbon into a pumpkin, using a particularly shimmery one to add to my collection of glitter pumpkins (my favorite!).  Plus, using a glittered ribbon seemed like a safe way to incorporate glitter into my décor without getting it everywhere.

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Lately, my busy days are making it hard for me to sit down and really enjoy a day of full crafting, so I have to supplement with smaller things I can do during a one-hour TV session. This craft took maybe 10 minutes from start to finish.

Supplies:

  • Wire ribbon
  • Clear tape (not necessary, but makes it easier)
  • Craft/jewelry wire or a twist-tie
  • Cinnamon stick

Cut four equal sized strips from the ribbon, mine were about 14 inches. You’ll want to leave an additional 1 – 2 inches on the ends to wrap them. The longer the ribbon, the bigger the pumpkin. I recommend keeping them small, since the ribbon isn’t the sturdiest.

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I used a “template pumpkin” to get a good size.

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Take the first two ribbons and cross them right at the middle. Temporarily tape them down to hold in place.

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Add the third ribbon, diagonally intersecting the other two. Then add the fifth ribbon, crossing diagonally the other way across the existing ribbons. Secure with tape.

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This part is a little tricky. Slowly start twisting the open ends of the ribbon together, until they’re all bunched and have closed the top.

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Secure by wrapping a wire around the ends.

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Sometimes the ribbons get pushed around in the process, but simply puff them out and help mold them into a pumpkin shape. Remove the tape (I forgot when I was photographing). As long as the pumpkin isn’t moved around too much, it should keep its shape just fine. Then add a cinnamon stick for a stem!

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You can pick up a few different colors of ribbon to have an entire ribbon pumpkin patch!

Pin it here:

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10 Easy DIY No-Carve Pumpkin Tutorials – A Roundup

No-Carve DIY Pumpkin Tutorials

The no-carve pumpkin roundups are always my favorite! I have been doing them every Halloween for the past four years! Each year I’m impressed and inspired by everyone’s creativity and talent at decorating gourds!

This roundup really went with my theme this year of gold, copper and white. Which one’s your favorite?

(from top left to right)

1. Gold stenciled – I love the black lacquer paint.
2. Copper striped – I have got to get my hands on that copper tape!
3. Tuxedo cat – need I say more?
4. Gold sequined polka dots – cheerful and lovely.
5. Stenciled doily  – creates an elegant pattern in no time.
6. Fox pumpkin – those ears!
7. String art – dreamy Ursa Major
8. Sharpie paint pen – a fast and fun decorating project
9. Argyle painted – a refreshing step away from the chevron fad
10. Glitter spray paint – because glitter makes everything better.

quick fall craft: star studded pumpkin

With everything that’s going on these days, I’m determined to keep the project time on crafts down to a minimum, or else I’ll have a bunch of half-finished crafts hanging around.

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This star-studded pumpkin took just a few minutes to make! You can customize it any way you like, and as added bonus, it was practically free to make. The foam pumpkin was left over from last year (but originally $1 from a dollar store). The spray paint was left over from this project.  And the brads were free at a craft swap!

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It was so refreshing to be able to wrap up a cute craft knowing I didn’t spend an entire afternoon and $50 on it, because we all know that can certainly happen.

You will need:
– Foam pumpkin (I bet a real one would work too!)
– spray paint (optional)
scrapbooking brads/paper fasteners

If you want to change the original color of the foam pumpkin, spray it with two coats of spray paint. Waiting 15 minutes in between coats. I did the dishes during this time and felt like a big champ.

After you’ve placed your final coat of paint on the pumpkin, wait another 15 minutes or so for it to dry. You want the pumpkin to be dry to the touch.

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Then get to poking! You can put as many or as few brads as you would like.

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Go ahead and customize your pumpkins by switching up the spray paint color and the type of brads. I’d love to see what you come up with.

Studded Pumpkin

five great no-carve pumpkin ideas

There are only a few days left until Halloween. I haven’t had a lot of time to stop by a pumpkin patch, let alone carve a pumpkin, so this year, I might just pick up a sugar pumpkin at the grocery store (sigh). Luckily, there are some very cute no-carve ideas out there and some of these look like they only take a few minutes to make. Here are my top five (all with tutorials!).

No Carve Pumpkin Ideas

1. Button Pumpkins from Mom4Real
2. Donut Pumpkins from Studio DIY
3. Neon Ombre Pumpkins from Funky Time
4. Push Pin Pumpkins from A Subtle Revelry
5. Melted Crayon Pumpkins from The Swedish Records

What do you think? Aren’t they all so beautiful? Which one would you choose?

carved pumpkin inspiration – Haunted Pumpkin Garden

I am such a sucker for a good carved pumpkin. So much so, that I dragged Ryan and my sister to the New York Botanical Garden to see their Haunted Pumpkin Garden. It was a two hour trip, one way. Talk about commitment

Haunted Pumpkin Garden Carved Pumpkins

I soon realized that the Haunted Pumpkin Garden was a children’s exhibit – I guess when I think Haunted, I thought adult, but it didn’t spoil the fun. Haunted Pumpkin Garden

There were so many creative pumpkin carvings. I really had to control myself with the photos. Sorry for the image overload.

Friendly Carved Pumpkin

Sun-Shaped Carved Pumpkin - NY Botanical Gardens

Carved Pumpkins

They had a pumpkin mushroom patch. How cute is that? You know how much I love mushrooms.

Mushrooms Made out of Pumpkins

Mushrooms made out of Pumpkins

This exhibit was produced with the help of the Great Pumpkin Commonwealth. They sanction all of those giant pumpkin contests. They’ll be displaying the world’s three largest pumpkins in Grand Central.  I couldn’t get a date, but I’ll be sure to keep a look out. It should be soon.

Spider made from Pumpkins

Snake Pumpkin

So, if it isn’t obvious, all of the pumpkins are fake, When I realized that, it was sort of like telling me there is no Santa Clause. I guess it makes sense. The pumpkins have to sit out for more than a month. Regardless, the entire exhibit was still magical.

Scarecrow Pumpkins

Spooky Bush

The gardens themselves are stunning. They have paved paths and more rustic trails, which are great for taking a stroll or going on a run. The Bronx river even runs through it, so we walked along the water for a while and tried our skills at tree identification (our new hobby). It was hard to believe we were still in the city.

Waterfall

And the rose garden was blooming! How lucky were we?

NY Botanical Garden Rose

Ryan and I in the Rose Garden

The quiet paths and Autumn’s trees were exactly what I needed on a Sunday. Even waiting for the train ride home seemed peaceful and magical at dusk.

Train at Dusk

halloween cat costumes!

In short, these Halloween cat costumes are the best. I cannot even begin to tell you how excited I became when I saw them.

Witch Hat Cat Halloween Costume

Witch Hat Cat Costume

I tried to show them to my cats, but they ran in fear.

Wizard Cat Costume

Wizard Hat Cat Costume

These are all hand made by Etsy Shop Owner I Heart Needlework. She custom makes them to fit your cat’s head. She also makes costumes for dogs and guinea pigs. How cute is that?

Pilgrim Hat Cat Costume

Cat Pilgrim Costume

I love the Thanksgiving ones, which would be perfect for both Halloween and Thanksgiving. I’m all about re-using costumes.

Turkey Cat Halloween Costume

Turkey Cat Halloween Costume

Oh, and how great is her cat? What a perfect model.  We bought our cats a dinosaur costume. Needless to say, it didn’t go over well.

p.s. This cat mermaid costume is my favorite.

spooky halloween candle DIY

Halloween Candles

I snagged these candles at the dollar store and had serious plans to decorate them for Halloween. And how cute are they? I can’t stop smiling when I see them. Oh, and those fake leaves? Also from the dollar store. I felt like a rock star when I left. Cheap craft supplies and tacky photo props? Sign me up.

Supplies

Candle Supplies

This craft probably costs less than $6, if you’re buying all the supplies from scratch.

– dollar store candles, with labels peeled off. I used white for the ghost, orange for the pumpkin.
– high gloss black acrylic paint (or black nail polish)
– sharpie. I used the fine-tip for better detail.
– paint brush
– Q-tip for fixing mistakes. 

Use your sharpie to outline your shapes. Tip: You can use a wet Q-tip as an eraser. It will take the sharpie right off.

Here are my outlines. They’re not perfect, because I was going to paint over them anyway.

Jack O'Lantern Outline

Ghost Outline

Fill in the outlines with black paint. Make sure you don’t have a lot of paint on your brush when you’re trying to do edges and corners. It will make the fine detail much easier. You can also use Q-tips here to fix mistakes. I did two coats, letting it dry for 10 minutes between coats.

And you’re done!

Halloween CAndles

This whole craft took less than 20 minutes. It’s so fun to create something from start to finish in one sitting.  My original intention was to paint these using black nail polish, but I didn’t have any. I’d like to find a black candle and do something with white acrylic paint.

Spooky Halloween D.I.Y. Candles

I hope you have fun making these. You can do all sorts of designs, but I decided to keep it simple with the ghost and jack o’lantern. Let me know what you make.

Six Dress Halloween Costume

For Halloween this year, I went as a character from my all-time favorite TV show, Battlestar Galatica. I’m serious, guys. This is the most fan-person thing I’ve ever done. I’m not kidding, I’m getting excited just writing this post. The character is Caprica Six, or the six model of cylon. I find her fascinating and one of the most intriguing fictional characters ever developed. So, to show off the dress, Ryan, Watson and I did a little photo shoot. You think I’m kidding?

Watson Modeling

Watson was being his usual grumpy self. And ryan was showing me how it’s really done.

Ryan Modeling

So, he’s gonna kill me for posting that photo. Ok. On to the dress, which is why you’re really here.

Dress Before:

Dress Before Dress Before

Dress After:

I cut up an old dress my friend let me have. I created a shape for the bodice, extended the back (I couldn’t get it to zip over my breasts), cut out the waist and back, and shortened it.

Dress After Side view Dress After

Here’s the back of the dress.

Back of Dress

I bought a wig, but it looked cheap and horrible. I might be this character again and again for every Halloween. I saw a really someone create hand make the character’s jewelry, and I’d like to attempt that next time.

Here’s me doing the iconic pose.

Caprica 6 Pose

What do you think?

So now you know, I’m a huge nerd.

my top halloween costume picks

Halloween is so close. It’s even closer, since all of the good parties are on the weekend. That’s only three days away. And I don’t even have a costume. If you’re like me and wait until the last possible second, I hope I can help you out. Polyvore has this Halloween Costume contest that’s great for inspiration. It’s a few years old now, but I just love to browse through the different costume combinations. Here are my favorites.

Daria

Daria. I just finished watching the complete series and it really brings me back to my teenage years.

Carmen Sandiego

Carmen Sandiego. I used to love playing this game on my old DOS computer. I’ve always always wanted to go as her, but I’ve never had the red coat, until one time I found one at a thrift store, but it was $25 and January. And I lacked prescience to buy it. So, alas, another Halloween has come and gone and I am not Carmen Sandiego. Plus, where am I going to find a red hat like that?

Jessica Rabbit is a classic costume. Although, I do not have the body to pull it off. Lucky for any woman who does.

You could go as Audrey Hepburn. She’s so timeless. Remember to pencil in your eyebrows.

This is a cute rendition of Cogsworth. He was my favorite character in Beauty & the Beast. And think, making clock hands for a mustache would be a fun costume highlight.

Velma is a quick and easy costume that’s instantly recognizable. It’s a great go-to, but the downside is I usually see a Velma every year. One year I saw two.

Arthur is another one you could probably create with the things in your closet. Make a set of felt ears, so there’s no confusion as to who you are.

Oh, and how I’d love to go as Sofi from Howl’s Moving Castle. It’s one of my favorite animated films. So magical. I just need to find the right dress.

I wish Halloween was more than once of year. Writing this post has boosted my creativity a little in the costume department. Let’s hope mine comes together. So is anyone else out there a procrastinator when it comes to costumes? Good luck on yours!