Halloween

I know, I know — Halloween already???  Early September will find me at fabric and craft stores getting  supplies to make Halloween costumes for my kids (who probably think every mom starts hassling their kids mid-August for costume ideas).  I don’t know where this obsession with the macabre comes from– but I blame my Dad.  He was supposed to take my siblings and I to see ‘Snow White’ and took us to ‘Jaws” instead (true story — he even asked us not to let on to our Mom, but my guess is that it was all over our faces!)   Also, it doesn’t hurt that my house is a little on the haunted side.  And check out our spiders!  The one on left is real; the other one is a spider ring for comparison.

This year I thought I’d start the season off by visiting past Halloween costumes.  These are from 2005.  Tommy and Ed were ninjas and Elizabeth a flower.  I made the boys silken pajamas for the base.  Store-bought ninja weapon kits come with hoods and the boys wore these.  I made the front panels  and got the designs for them online.  Eddie wanted a dragon and Tommy a tiger.  As I have no drawing skills, I used a tattoo site for inspiration.  I find that even when you can’t draw,  you can easily re-create images as long as they are stylized.  I sketched out the designs, then filled them in with puffy paint for added dimension.  

For  Elizabeth’s costume I made a simple skirt with of various shades of pink tulle which were cut into the shape of flower petals. I used a store-bought ballet dress as the base to keep itching to a minimum.  The hat was from a pattern that I embellished a bit by sewing thin wires into the petal leaves so they could be bent away from her face. I also glued several fake grape vine leaves to her hat to give it extra dimension.  I know it seems like a lot of work for a Halloween costume (and it is!) but I love doing it every year.  The extra little details always seem to pull the it all together in the end. 

And the kids love it, too.

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I have always loved the process of transforming pieces of fabric into quilts. For years I collected scraps, just to be sure I'd have the right piece for the project at hand. Eventually, as my skills progressed, my hobby grew into art. I moved from simple quits, to 'landscape quilting' and then eventually onto portrait work. I am new to the art field and am self-taught, learning from my mistakes as well as from my successes. I create my images using only fabric and thread. I remain true to this limitation for two reasons; first, I love the challenge of finding new ways to depict ever more challenging subjects. Second, fabric work remains my true love. I enjoy the hunt for fabrics; where other artists might blend oil paints, I love finding that perfect shade or pattern for a specific need. I refer to my style as "gestalt impressionism" for one needs to take a step back from my pieces to get the whole picture. My view point changes by what is influencing me at the time. Recently I've begun to focus on the journey of the individual. I enjoy working on portraits of people whom I feel have lead interesting lives.

Posted in Halloween

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