Halloween Fun!

Time for some Halloween fun! First and foremost, I want to note that I indeed finish the skeleton stuffie I started at Etsy Labs earlier this month!
I opted to do the face features with fabric paint instead of black felt. I like him!
These are the handmade items I made for the Harajuku Girls Group Halloween Swap on swap-bot. I included other Halloween related items but didn’t take photos of those. The black cat and pumpkin keychain are made of felt and I got the pattern from a Japanese craft book I recently purchases. The black and orange towels were blank from Kohl’s and I embroidered matching cute skulls, an image I got from a Stampin’ Up catalog! I used Saral transfer paper for this, which worked out really well although I initially bought it to transfer images onto felt, which does not work so well!

Then last week Geneva and Phoenix came over to help carve the pumpkin we got from Lawrence Farms. I never carved a pumpkin before! Geneva was kind enough to do the initial cutting and gutting. She let me and Sienna carve out the face. We even roasted the seeds, also something I’ve never done before!
The Jack O’Lantern barely lasted a week (we kept it indoors). I read that if you put cinnamon powder inside and the cut rim, it would last longer. I don’t know if this is true but it gave the pumpkin a dark and dull look. It started rotting about 5 days after. I was going to put it outside on the patio but wanted to wait until closer to Halloween. Oh well. At least I know how to do it for next year!

I am also proud of myself for making part of Sienna’s Halloween costume and the accompanying piece for Yves to wear.  You’ll understand what I mean when you see it. I’ll post it after Halloween so I don’t ruin the surprise.

Yesterday I made chocolate covered peeps and chocolate covered pretzel rods with sprinkles. I’m not really a peeps person but I saw this idea at Jacques Torres being sold for $1.25! (I thought I saw it for $1.25 but then saw on someone’s blog that it was $2.25) So since someone sent me peeps in a swap, I wanted to try it out. Of course the ones from Jacques Torres probably tastes better because of the quality of chocolate (it better for that price!). I still haven’t tried it yet.  I’ll probably give it away at the Halloween festival tomorrow.
peepsonastick500.jpg chocopeepsonastick500.jpgchocopeepsclose500.jpg
The ones at JT had eyes on them. I was going to put them on but realized I had the gel frosting so it would probably get all gooey in the bag.

Lawrence Farms


On the 10th we headed up north to Lawrence Farms to do some pumpkin picking upping and meet up with Tammy, Mark and Zack. It was a real nice farm with apple picking and lots of other veggies to pick. They even had a play village, fresh apple cider donuts and some goats, sheep and peacock. A pumpkin was picked and a few apples too. I didn’t pay attention to the pumpkin picking thinking that it was just going to rot like last year’s pumpkin. Now I wish I did as Geneva and Phoenix are coming over to help carve the pumpkin! Oh well. I wish we could have stayed longer at the farm but it was a bit windy and we didn’t dress appropriately (mind you, we did know it was going to be colder and brought sweaters but that wasn’t enough!). Afterwards we headed over to Tammy’s house for some delicious chili and Sienna played next to a bunch of other kids. It was a nice day.


Yves’ got 2 real cute videos on his post!

Etsy Labs October!

(I had to try Jacques Torres ice cream while in the area! It was yummy!)

Etsy Labs moved to their new location in Dumbo in September. They were having some real cool labs in October and I vowed to go to them more often. Well, I’ve gone to every one in October! (The last Monday is open craft night and I don’t usually go to that.) It was helpful to be able to head out earlier and get there around 4. In the past, I usually go after 5 and there are always a lot of people there that don’t even look up when someone walks into the room. Now that I have gotten there early the last few times, I understand why! We are all intent on working on our creations that sometimes we don’t even notice someone has come in! LOL. The first Monday lab was making a paper card called Exquisite Corpse and was being held by Esther K. Smith, who wrote the book “How to Make Books” (among other books). I didn’t really like my creation so much but it could be the fact that my desire to do paper crafts is not as strong (I’m really into felt and fiber related crafts). I also met up with Rachel, co founder of one of my favorite sites, swap-bot. She didn’t like her creation either.
My creation
Me and Rachel’s work (taken by Julie of Etsy Labs)

The 2nd lab was something I was really looking forward to because it dealt with felt! I met up with Rachel even earlier and got some wicked hot cocoa at Jacques Torres. We got to the lab a little after 4 and started pretty soon after. It was making a skull stuffie being held by Diana Schoenbrun and it was a pretty big project so I didn’t even finish it (I vow to finish it by Halloween!)
A sample skull on the left, where I left off on mine on the right!
Rachel’s skull
Suzanna’s skull
Julia’s skull

This past week I met up with Rachel again and we got some more hot cocoa at Jacques Torres. She wanted to check out the ice cream shop next door but it was closed! I wonder if it was closed for the season because it wasn’t even cold out, the temps about in the 60’s, still perfect weather for ice cream! Drat!
This day’s lab was making felt photo pockets with Kata Golda (who just came out with a book, Hand Stitched Felt). She supplied the prettiest hand dyed felt! I loved the way it handled. And I finished my project!
My finished felt photo pocket. I believe Kata says it holds 24 photos!
Me and Rachel’s finished pieces!
These are Chelsea’s bird (top) and Suzanna’s bird (bottom). I really liked them and asked if I could photograph them!

Atlantic Antic year 3

So yes, Yves posted about going to this already on October 4 so here are some more photos. We’ve gone every year for the past 3 years, since Sienna has been born so it has become a sort of tradition. Unfortunately, we did not get to dance like we did last year but it was still fun.
Me and Sienna crafted a tissue paper flower at the Brooklyn Children’s Museum booth.
Sienna loves lollipops and one booth was giving out these DumDum lollipops (the same ones she gets at the doctor’s office) She cried until she was able to go ask for one.
Looking on the old buses was fun.
Back of the bus. I imagine it can get quite crowded back here.
Sienna eating her Mozzarepa like she did last year. Me and Yves found the empanadas we liked from when we tried them the year before last. (I thought it was funny to see how busy those cops in the back were!)

We ended up going to Barnes and Noble so I could use the bathroom and we bought 2 new Dr. Suess books for Sienna. She really likes (most of) them. We hopped back on the train afterwards. The time seemed so short but she ended up taking a nap when we got home. She was tired from all the excitement I guess. I’m kind of looking forward to when her naps end so we can spend longer amounts of time at places. I know I’m going to regret saying that though!

Let’s Get Physical!


I just wanted to show a photo of Sienna with this “headband” on. It’s actually the cuff of one of the t-shirt sleeves I cut up for the Generation T Etsy Labs I went to in August. She took it upon herself to put it on her head a la Olivia Newton-John’s “Let’s Get Physical.” Or just a general 80’s look. I thought it was funny.

Gasp! We go to Staten Island!

If you keep up with Yves’ blog, you already know we went to the Staten Island Children’s Museum in September. Here are a couple of more photos. We were underwhelmed when we first got there but then realized that there were lots of rooms with different things in them so it was fun. Afterwards, we went to lunch down the road (the name  of the restaurant escapes me) and ate outside. The food wasn’t the greatest but it was nice to be able to eat outside. Yves was nice enough to let me go to Joann’s craft store about a 5 minute drive away after lunch.


Swaps and Crafts Part 2

Continuing on with another swaps and crafts post before I get too far behind! Here are two swaps I received. This one is for the felt brooch swap, a crab because I’m a Cancer. So cute!
And this one is a needlecase for the Fall Felt Swap. I love it! I love what she used for the owl’s eyes!

Here are a couple I made for the 13 days of Halloween swap. This one I crocheted a skull applique and glued it onto this little wall hanging I sewed with skull fabric. I had trouble with the grommets and Yves came to the rescue. I didn’t have anywhere to hang it so just laid it on my table to photograph.skullhanging500.jpg
This one I embroidered a freebie design I got from Craftblog of a Frankenstein Bunny and Skeleton Bunny and made into stuffies (I used another of Sienna’s old receiving blankets!). You can’t tell from the photo but the bones in the skeleton were used with glow in the dark thread.
The back was made with purple glittery fabric I got from another swap!

I really enjoyed embroidering and made another stuffie (again on one of Sienna’s old receiving blankets! Way to use them up!) This candy apple is a pattern from Wild Olive. This swap was for the Halloween Fake Food Swap.
For the same swap I made this jack o’lantern and used glow in the dark fabric paint for the eyes. I got this pattern from PlanetJune!

And this is not for a swap but a belated birthday present for my good friend Geneva, momma to Phoenix. I took this photo of them back in April at the Easter Egg hunt and I know Geneva loves this photo. I printed it out on fabric, appliqued it to another one of Sienna’s old receiving blankets and embroidered a heart. I made it into a pillow with some fabric that I got from Brenda.
And tooting my own horn here, I hand stitched the pillow closed! I only just started doing this as I found some really great detailed instructions on the internet (sorry I don’t remember the link!) I still need more practice but considering I hated handstitching, I think I’ve come a long way!genevapillowseams500.jpg

Arepas, Music, Trivia!

A couple of weeks ago was the September mixer. Since I really enjoyed Common Ground at the August mixer, I decided to go back there but this time for Wednesday night trivia! I was able to rally Peter to meet me for dinner beforehand (he doesn’t normally come to the mixers).
The plantains
The cheesy balls
The Arepas
Close up of our favorite
Pete getting ready to chomp!

We went to Caracas Arepa Bar in the East Village. YUM YUM YUM! We got 2 appetizers and a sort of sampler arepa plate to share. We got yoyos (fried sweet plantain balls stuffed with white cheese) and Tostones Mochimeros (Fried Green Plantains topped with Mojito Mayo, a squeeze of lemon and white cheese) for the apps. And we opted for the La Popular combination platter: La de Pabellón (shredded beef, black beans, white salty cheese and sweet plantains), La Reina Pepiada (chunky chicken and avocado mix salad) and La Mulata (grilled white cheese with jalapeños, sautéed red peppers, fried sweet plantains and black beans). The La Mulata was both of our favorite and it was fun to see Pete shout out a Whoo! when he got to the jalapeños. The Reina Pepiada was our 2nd favorite and the de Pabellón was our least favorite (a bit too sweet). We were too stuffed to get any of their desserts and tried to think of somewhere for some ice cream when we ran into Alison and Josh going to the mixer. We decided to just start drinking and head to the bar.
Josh, Nuno and Ali thinking up answers

Pete stayed for a drink and left before trivia. Guess what? We won trivia night!! Wooohooo!! Now, I can’t take any credit whatsoever for the win. I might have known about 5 answers to the 60 questions asked. Unfortunately our team was named Monkey Karate Ninjas (I think Josh picked this one and I was already feeling the beer and did not argue! HA!) and there were some really entertaining team names. I think most credit goes to Jonathan. We won a $50 gift certificate to Common Ground and will probably use it for the November mixer. The mix I made I had Sienna in mind as I called it We Can Count! Below is the tracklist.

Starts With One    Shiny Toy Guns
Two Times    The Blakes
3 Strange Days    School of Fish
Four-Eyed Girl    Rhett Miller
The First Five Times    Stars
Six Barrel Shotgun    Black Rebel Motorcycle Club
Seven Nation Army    The White Stripes
Crazy Eights    Tapes N Tapes
Step On My Old Size Nines    Stereophonics
10    M.I.A.
The 11th Hour    Rancid
Twelve    Jurassic 5
Thirteen    Big Star
Fourteen    ¡Forward, Russia!
15 Steps    Radiohead
Sixteen, Maybe Less    Calexico / Iron & Wine
Seventeen Dirty Magazines    Modern Skirts
18 and Life    Skid Row
19    Paul Hardcastle
Twenty On My Way    Arthur Lee & Love

Swaps and Crafts

I don’t usually post the swaps I received as much as I do the swaps I send out. Once in awhile I get motivated to post a swap received when it blows my mind but I should try to post them more often. My partner for the Harajuku Girls Group Sweets swap really spoiled me! I mean, she really went out of her way and sent me a box load of sweets. The postage alone was over $10!!
She even decorated a wooden box and put more candy in there! And she sent me Chocolate Banana pocky!! I never saw that flavor before! My dentist is going to love me. 😉
This was a leaf brooch I made for the Felt Brooch swap. My partner liked leaves and something for Autumn. I also made a G in the lower right for her since her name begins with G. I really like it!
Here is a softie I made for Sylvie’s first birthday. The pattern is from The long thread and she calls it Lucy Goosey. I used part of an old receiving blanket of Sienna’s (I have a bunch of those!)

Here is a ladybug I crocheted for a swap. It’s been so long that I forgot what the swap was for! The pattern is from Lion Brand’s website. I glued black dots on her instead of crocheting black dots and used fabric paint for the eyes. The eyes are a bit funky but oh well.

I have a few more crafts and swaps to show. I hope to post that sooner rather than later!