Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Homely to Haunted {take 4}

 I found this mirror at a free swap that we did at my church.  Can't beat free!

 (hello Mr. Spider)

 Of course, it needed a little love (aka black spray paint).

 (where did you come from, little raven?)

Isn't the detail great!?!

 This mirror is going to look fabulous in my front entryway.  I might even stick my vinyl "You look BOOtiful" saying on it.

So don't pass up those treasures!  Especially if they are free...

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

A work in progress

I decided to go ahead and add the beads.  I'm sure glad I did!

And with a little moss.

I'm actually embarrassed to think that I once thought it looked better plain!  I also think I'll add more beads.  Lots more.  But I'll need to wait until I buy more spray paint.  :)

to be continued...

Monday, August 15, 2011

Homely to Haunted {take 3}

Old misfit item.  Black spray paint.  You know the drill.



At first I was tempted to leave the "older" looking brass just the way it was, but figured I'd just go ahead and paint them.  I think the spider approves.

And here is another set that got the paint treatment.  (the BEFORE picture is in THIS will need to play "I spy")

So why all the candlesticks?

One of my new projects for this year is a candle display in my front bay window located right next to the front door.  I am going to make a sign similar to THIS one that I found on Etsy that says "Wicked Wick's Candle Shoppe."  I will likely just put something together in Photoshop and put it in an 8x10 frame since I have no sort of vinyl machine to speak of.  But together with a nice collection of LED candles and it will be a great display to greet guests!

About candles:

(just a small sampling)

I don't do real flame candles.  With little kids to knock them over, and my house burning down being in the top three on my nightmare just isn't worth it!  So I have started a nice collection of LED candles.  I was lucky enough to find a jackpot of clearance LED taper candles at a local home decor store.  They've had them in their 50% off section for over a year now, so I just pick one or two up every time I go in (about once a month).  Amazingly they are never gone when I go to buy more.  Apparently no one else realizes that candles are a Halloween must. :)  I've also found many LED candles in thrift stores.  And if you don't mind spending more than 50 cents, you can get LED candles at Walmart...although I've noticed their flickering qualities aren't quite up to par with the rest.  If I had a Hobby Lobby next to me, that would also be a place I would go (as well as any other craft store)...and they have amazing sales too!

Really, LED candles are everywhere, so be on the look-out for those great deals.

Happy hunting!

Monday, August 8, 2011

Tonight's Project

Tonight I am going to sit down and cut out some more bats for my entryway.  

  Halloween Entryway 2010

This year I want them coming all the way from the basement window (from the left...window not pictured) I will need to make just a few more.

I almost panicked because I didn't think I had any black felt laying around, and our only craft store in town is already closed (sorry Walmart, your felt is too expensive).  But do not fear, I found some lurking in my basement (phew!).  So I'll get out my sharpest scissors, a white crayon, my bat template found HERE from Country Living, and settle down to a nice chick-flick (most likely BBC's Emma) to help pass the time.  

Oooooooo I love working on Halloween projects!

Thursday, August 4, 2011

DIY Candelabra

Last year I saw this great tutorial for a huge candelabra made by Sandra over at Sawdust and Paper Scraps.  I do love a good candelabra you know, and a huge life size one was just too good to pass up!  I truly am SO glad there are some genius DIY-ers out there.

The tutorial on the website is all you need to know how to do it (linked above), but I thought I'd share how my own DIY adventure went.

Here is how mine looked by the end of today's tinkering, but I made more changes to it here.

It actually didn't take as long as I thought to get all the old lamps I needed, although I think I just got lucky.  I went into the thrift store two or three times and found just what I needed.

I forgot to take a picture of the lamp for the base, but it looked groovy and brassy like this one:

And I forgot to take a picture of the lamp for the top (notice a trend here?) before I painted it and gutted it, but here it is slightly reconstructed.

 You get the general idea.

I put everything together and here it is...almost completed.

It sure was fun cutting off the threaded rod to the right size (no, not really).  But once it was I was so happy to put everything together.  I didn't want mine quite as tall as Sandra's, so I got a smaller length of PVC pipe.  Time to spray paint the rest black!

Wal-mart just happened to sell little LED candles in the EXACT size I needed. Whoo-hoo!  I already had the larger candle that goes in the middle, so that was an added bonus.  And I really CANNOT decide if I want to do the beads or not.  It looks a little too modern to me.  So I tried it with a touch of moss to see how I like it.

My 6 year old son asked me if he could use it as a night-light in his room.  I love that kid.  :)

 Hmmm...the jury is still out.  I just can't decide.  But I do have a few months until Halloween, so if I decide to do the beads I can always add them closer to the big day.

Overall, a very fun project!  I'm so excited to put it on display soon!

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

10 Indications of a Halloween Nerd

  in no particular order

1.  You drive four hours to Salt Lake City every October just to visit Gardner Village and their amazing witches.  And yes, you do the "Witch Hunt" with your kids every year to get a 25 cent cookie.

 (Gardner Village, SLC, UT)

2.  At any time of the year, when you find a craft blog that looks like it has potential, you go straight to their October archives to see what ideas they have for Halloween decorating (and are very annoyed if they don't have a "Halloween" section in their labels list to make things easier).

3. You have more boxes of Halloween decorations sitting in your crawl space than you do Christmas boxes (and believe me, you have a LOT of Christmas decorations). 

4.  When you and your fellow Halloween nerd neighbor see each other, you automatically start talking about your projects for the upcoming Halloween (even though it is only March).  You draw many weird looks from those around you.

5.  You find yourself doing Halloween crafts at all times of the year.

6.  You go to Disneyland with the intent to get great ideas for Halloween decorating (second only to the intent of having fun, of course).  You take pictures of the Haunted Mansion to hang on your wall (see THIS post).  You take pictures of displays inside the store just outside the Pirates of the Caribbean exit to get ideas for your future Halloween pirate room.  Definitely worth the time (and money) spent scouting for ideas.

(the pirate store)

7.  You have a Halloween playlist on your iPod that you listen guessed all times of the year.

8.  When you go into your favorite home decor store, you head straight to the clearance aisle full of items that are broken or otherwised damaged, but are happily severely discounted.  When the cashier apologizes for the state of the items, and begins to give advice on where to go to properly fix said items, you politely say that there will be no need for fixing because you purposely want them broken...for Halloween decorating of course.  More weird looks.  (you get used to that)

9.  On a similar note to indication #8, you frequently buy random items (lanterns, old books, candlesticks, etc) intended for Halloween off of Craig's list or from yard sales.  When you go to pay for them, the seller often asks (out of curiosity) what plans you have for the items bought.  When you explain that they are for Halloween decorating, you often get the aforementioned weird look.  But sometimes you will get someone who sees your vision and is now a little reluctant to relinquish the item.  You may even have someone cling to the items a little tighter as you try to take it, as you see her hesitate before finally giving it to you (true story).  But you are not ashamed of still buying the items from her.  It's not your fault she didn't think of turning her supposed "junk" into Halloween decor before putting it out for sale.  Besides, you had already given her the money.   ;)

(items the seller was loathed to part with)

10.  You are such a Halloween nerd that your children have already inherited the same disease quality even though they are 6 years old or younger.  They frequently ask to listen to the aforementioned Halloween playlist.  They look forward to the yearly trip to Gardner Village.  They help you do your Halloween crafts amidst Valentine's Day decorations.  In July they are telling cashiers what they are going to be for Halloween (so proud).  All in all they are a lovely support to you and your obsessions.  And what better way to justify your Halloween devotion than to label it as "family time"?

What indications do YOU exhibit?  

 I may or may not have all ten.  You decide.

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

Homely to Haunted {take 2}

Another little treasure needed some coaxing to become all that it was destined to be.

Back in 2009 (yes I know, a bit of a flashback) I found this beauty at DI (where else?) and just couldn't pass it up.  At $6 it was a little more than I liked to spend on transformation projects, but it was worth it.  I mean, candlebra and Halloween are pretty much synonymous, right?  I had to have it.
your typical silver candleabra

now a spooky creation worthy of displaying

And display it I did.
Amazing what some black spray paint can do.

  Like my father-in-law always says...even an old barn looks good painted.  :)

My only regret is that I found another similarly fascinating four-pronged candelabra at DI just this last week, but the $8 price tag was a little too steep (I know, I'm a little to frugal for my own good sometimes).  But then I got home and realized I was crazy for not snatching it up, so I resolved to go the next day.  Can you believe it was GONE!?!  I sure hope that person realizes what a treasure they own. 

And they better have painted it black.  Just sayin'.

Monday, August 1, 2011

The Apothecary

One of my new projects for this year is The Apothecary.   There is just something so spooky about a bookshelf/desk full of cobweb-covered and dusty bottles, books, candles, and other aging knick-knacks.

 (this is all I got out for my apothecary last Halloween...the top part of the hutch was in the middle of being refinished)

While I'm waiting for my refinished hutch to be completed (hmmm...I might want to dedicate some time to that...September is getting closer...) I spend my time collecting knick-knacks (of course) and looking for inspirational ideas and photos online.  Here are a few of my favorites:

You can't go wrong with Love Manor.

I love the piles of books and the bust.  I also think that portrait is hanging in the haunted mansion at Disneyland...where did he get that!?!

I also was able to glean some ideas from this picture of Martha's:


These two lovely pictures from Better Home and Gardens also gave me a few ideas:

(lovin' the old trunk and spiderwebs)

And I found a worthy-of-imitation Halloween mantel at Mod Vintage Life Go check it out!

I have yet to see if I have the skills to turn my hutch into something worthy of these ideas, but I relish the challenge.

More Apothecary ideas to come!

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