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Sunday, October 30, 2011

Happy Halloween 2011

It's time for the Sew*CakeMaker's big Halloween Costume Reveal!
Yep, finally finished.  I worked and worked and somehow managed to finish all the costumes in time for the Halloween Trunk-or-Treat at the church Saturday night.  

Eli was a Sack Boy from the website Little Big Planet
This is the picture I used to go off of...
The picture is way cuter, but at least I can say I tried  :0}

Madison's fairy costume I showed you on Friday. 

Emmalee I mean Hello Kitty Star dressed as herself for Halloween this year.
She asked me what I was going to be....I said, "Your mom, of course."

Yep, we even roped Dad into the party.  He really didn't have a choice.  So we have Hello Kitty Star, Mrs. Kitty, and Mr. Kitty.  

I just had to throw a picture of Emmalee with her cute little friend Kylee in the line-up too.  Isn't Kylee the yummiest chocolate bar you ever did see?!?

So glad to have those costumes finished.  Now we are finally ready for Halloween.  I will be back in the morning to show you our trick-or-treat bags.  Have a great night!

Friday, October 28, 2011

Fairy Wings

Madison wanted to be a fairy for Halloween this year.  In keeping with tradition, we decided to make the costume.  We Googled "Fairy Wing Tutorial" and came up with a couple good ideas.  The tutorial we finally decided to follow was by RioDancerCO.  I always seem to change a few things so here is an overview of what we did to make Madison's fairy wings.

The basic ingredients are wire coat hanger, regular cellophane wrap {you find in the gift wrap isle at your local store}, a little glue, ribbon to make some make-shift sleeves, and an iron.
I sketched out a wing on a piece of paper until I got the final thumbs-up approval from the princess herself.  We cut 4 wings from iridescent cellophane, then two more from a cellophane bag that had swirlies on it for a little bit of dazzle. 
 I took two wire coat hangers and cut them here with my wire cutters.  Did I mention that I had to borrow the hangers from a friend. Ever since working at a dry-cleaners in college {spent hours untangling wire hangers} I don't allow them in my house.  Anyway, snip, then work the hanger with the needle nose pliers, bending the hanger where ever necessary until you have the same shape as the wing.  I actually had the hanger about 1/2" inside of the edge of the wing so that the hanger would be totally enclosed in the wing.

Fabritac was the glue we used to glue the hanger to the first layer of cellophane.  

Once the wire was in place, we laid the swirly layer on top, and then finished our hanger/swirl sandwich off with a top piece of iridescent cellophane.  

Next, I laid down a towel {since my ironing board isn't big enough for the size of wings we made} and lined it with parchment paper.  

A second piece of parchment paper was used on top, then we ironed.  I seem to remember the tutorial saying to use the lowest setting on your iron to melt the cellophane layers together.  That didn't work.  We turned it up...then a little higher...passed the middle mark...Ooops!  Too high.  You can tell it is too high when it turns your cellophane white.  I think they will wrinkle no matter what, but try to apply the iron in quicker, long strokes at first so that the plastic melts evenly.  If you hold the iron in one place for a while you will get huge wrinkles that are very hard to correct.

Here you go!  Success.  First try :0)

We found these fun sprigs of glittery loops at Hobby Lobby today.  They had to come home with us because they fit the wings so perfectly.  

The part of the hanger that is the hook, we straightened that out, then used it to wrap the two wings together.  The wire from the loopy thing was added to the hanger hooks, then that whole part was wrapped with ribbon to hide the mess.  Two long strands of ribbon were tied to that center piece, then tied around the arms.  I ended up hot gluing small wedges of Styrofoam to the bottom of the wings, right there in the center, so that the wings don't droop when they are worn.  

My fairy, chips and dip in hand, headed to her party tonight.  I wasn't sure if we would get everything done in time, but WHEW!  Done!

And I have to say, it all turned out beautiful!

Madison added some rhinestone circles to the wings to make them her own.  They were so easy to make and so very amazing once finished, I may just have to make another pair!
Now, one last costume to make.  Wish me luck!!!

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Easy Pumpkin Cake Pops

Madison volunteered to bring dessert for her church activity tonight.  We had visions of elaborate cakey contraptions of grandeur...but as we finally finished homework and such we just didn't have the energy.  Here are my oh-so-basic pumpkin cake pops.  
I decided to go with paper straws instead of sucker sticks.  I am so glad I did.  They are ADORABLE!  I dipped the balls in orange colored almond bark {colored with candy coloring, NOT REGULAR FOOD COLORING, found at Joanns, Micheals, or your local cake supply store.  

You know me, can't resist variety of color and texture, so I sprinkled half with orange sugar sprinkles.  I know the adults don't usually like sprinkles, so I never do all of them with sprinkles, but the kids...they just can't get enough.
I thought of several ways to make a pumpkin over the last couple weeks.  They all seemed too complicated.  That was how we finally arrived at the green ribbon for the stem thing.  Too Cute!
Simple and stylish.

When I am running behind, oreo cookie pops are the fall back.  The funny thing is, I think they are more popular than the cake pops.  They are much faster too.  Instead of baking a cake, waiting for it to cool, I just rip open a bag of oreos, chop it up in the food processor (purchased just for oreo cookie pops :0) *{shhh, don't tell Mr. Sew*CakeMaker}* then blend in one block of cream cheese with a hand mixer.  Love it!  Everyone else seems to also.

I will be back soon with the Trick or Treat bags I have been snacking on over the past few days as well as our costume line-up for this year.  Just to give you a clue, someone will be a SackBoy from Little Big Planet, someone will be a Hello Kitty, and someone will be a Fairy.  Bet ya can't guess who!!!

Sunday, October 23, 2011

Car Seat Covers-Finished!

Well, here they are!  Four custom made carseat slipcovers for four of my favorite babies!!!
This first one goes to my sister Kallie who waited patiently for this cover since February.  Yep.  That is how terribly backed up I have been.  


I don't know if it was more that I was backed up on my orders, or just that I didn't know how to make these covers user-friendly AND easy to make.  I worked and reworked the ideas in my mind...then put them all away for another month or two. 

My final result was this:  cut holes for the straps, running from the bum area all the way up to the shoulder straps, in a button-hole fashion.  Come back and sew a strip of fabric behind the cover that sticks out past the button hole-ish edge about 1 inch, and make the opening snap shut with hand dandy plastic snaps.  
It seems to work!  Now the cover can be put on and quickly taken off without undoing the straps from the back of the carseat.  Whew.  Glad I figured that one out.  Seriously, half of the delay had to have been from mortal dread when really, the process wasn't all that bad. {don't take that as an invitation to ask me to make you one :0}  There is a reason these guys are so expensive online!

Cover number two:  Damask Minki!!!!  Love it.
Had Nikki not picked out this fabric herself and handed it to me all paid for, I may not have given it back to her.  The minki worked so beautifully.  Don't you just love the red with the black and white?  


Cover number three: Black with hot pink.  Saucy!  
This one was super easy.  I didn't have to worry about the direction of the print pattern or anything.  Linda's baby is going to look adorable in this lush carseat.

 
Last but not least...in fact, Amber waited from June all the way until now for this car seat cover.  You can't hand me a pile of fabric just before Super Saturday prep begins and expect anything to come of it, now can ya?  Aren't my friends the best.  They were all so patient with me.  Amber picked red fleece for the cover part, then cotton baseball for the canopy.  The fleece was super nice because I didn't have to make it two layers.  I ran bias tape all around the strap openings and then installed snaps to keep them closed.  

That should work great for her little slugger.

Whew.  I can't even tell you how good it feels to finally get those four projects finished.  If I had more time and the smallest nerve left I would have made the head supports and strap covers for them all too.  I finally decided they were only for the paying customers ;0)  Actually, I still plan to make them, I just need a few more months {embarrassed snickers}

Saturday, October 22, 2011

Merry Swiftmas Came Early This Year!

Now, I know that this Taylor Swift concert was my first real concert, but seriously, it was the
BEST CONCERT EVER!!!
Thank goodness for my friend Sonia bringing her camera.  Apparently detachable lenses cameras aren't allowed in the concerts, so we relied on her point and shoot to record the images of the evening. 
Here are a few of the shots from the night... 


She really totally deserves entertainer of the year if you ask me.  I have never seen someone put so much heart and soul into a performance.  It was absolutely AMAZING!

Besides the fact that she is totally adorable and charming, she is so stinken' talented!  
Every time we turned around she was pulled another instrument out of nowhere and started to play it.  The 5 string guitar, the 6 and 12 string guitar, banjo, ukulele, piano...Madison appreciated my mom-nudge about how many instruments she plays.  She thought it was a little excessive of me to have her learn piano before she could take the violin.  Now, since her school doesn't have an orchestra program, she is taking the flute. 

I loved all of Taylor's flirty facial expressions.  All she had to do was move her eyes from one side to the other  and the crowd went wild with screams and applause.    


I loved her clothes!  She is so cute about her clothes normally, but the different pieces for the concert were totally true to her personality.  And speaking of different clothing, she would walk behind a pillar and come around the other side in a whole new dress.  This girl worked the entire 2 1/2 hour concert without a break, a lull, or a pause, and managed to change her outfit at least 10 times.


Never would I have imagined seeing a full line of stringed instruments playing symphony-style at a country/rock concert either.  Their was even a prima ballerina in the showat one point.  We saw some pretty young girls lining up to get into the event center.  I can only imagine how dazzled they must have been at the beauty and magic of it all.




I think one of the most amazing things about Taylor Swift is how incredibly personal she is.  She managed to walk from the stage to the back of the floor section, sat down by this tree, and chatted girl-talk-style with us all.  Who else could draw in 14,000 people and make them all feel like they were her best friends just hanging out for a good time.  She sat on this tree, that turned every so slowly, and sang 5 songs sprinkled with girl-talk.  All I could say over and over, all night long, was "She is so adorable!" and "She is so incredibly amazing!"  




Loved the set too, by the way.  If I haven't mentioned that yet, I am also in awe that this whole production was more like a play, each song leading to another, introduced with more girl-talk and carried out with fabulous set changes, special effects, and talented dancers.  
Did I mention that we reallyReally loved the whole night!!!
I can't imagine how dull a regular rock concert would be without all of the theatrics now that we have this concert to gauge things by :0)

Oh!  Oh yeah.  That's right....I mean Madison and her friends all really liked the concert :0)  
I just went along to chaperon...but managed to add my fair share of delighted screams to the din.

Big finale...Then of course Taylor came back out for not one, not two, but something like 4 more songs.  Don't you just LOVE this dress...

This was probably my favorite moment with her cast/crew.  Seeing them all sitting there around the couch was really charming all by itself.  

During Love Story she rode in this balcony out over the audience, down the left side, along the back, and up the right side of the crowd until she reached the stage once again. 

Amazing.

So sad it ended, but an incredible first concert for Madison and myself.  
We are definitely going next year.  Madison has decided she needs to round up a cow girl hat, boots, and some cute little country dress to wear by then.  
Gotta LOVE Taylor Swift!  It really was "Enchanting" to see her :0)