Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Capes, Alphabet Bling, and Cricut Cutouts

I finally finished the cape for my husband's Henry VIII costume, just in the nick of the time for the kids' Halloween trunk-or-treating carnival this weekend.  Trunk-or-Treating is a safer alternative to trick or treating.  You line up your cars and open your decorated, candy-filled trunks so the kids go from car to car instead of from door to door.  It works really well for the 5-and-under crowd because they don't really know the difference, and they'd rather do it in the middle of the afternoon, at a party anyway.  Picture from last year:

We were bees and a beekeeper and the trunk was a garden.  This year I'm going with a castle / princess theme, so I used my Cricut Personal Electronic Cutter to cut out some shapes.  It should be pretty cute.  Pictures to come.

As of four days ago, I had our dresses and the girls' tiaras, so I just need to finish Justin's cape, and find myself a tiara and an Anne Boleyn necklace.  She wore this letter "B" necklace in the most famous picture of her, and I felt I really needed it to complete the costume.  (I'm also going with a faint red line across my neck in case some people need another hint.)  So I look online, but they're too expensive; I scour the costume shops; I check the craft stores; nobody has a letter B necklace or bead.  I find a couple of bead shops in town and I check them out, to no avail, when someone suggests Piercing Pagoda.  DUH.  Why didn't I think of that?  What high school cheerleader doesn't have her monogram hanging around her neck??  So I head to the mall with my two kids and I check Claire's (nothing) some jewelry kiosks (too expensive) and Piercing Pagoda.  They had one that would have worked for $15, so I seriously considered it, but thought I'd check Hallmark first.  The lady at Hallmark said her daughter got her monogram necklace at Justice, which is a little teeny-bopper store (with some adorable clothes I might add).  They had exactly what I needed for $7.50.  Score.  I picked up a $4 tiara for myself at Claire's (and $20 in hairbows........I might have a problem) and called it a DAY.  Next year I might take a page out of my friend Carrie's book and just buy the damn things online.....which brings me to my next point: the cape.

I mentioned previously that I didn't want to spend fifty dollars on it.  I now understand why one would do this.  I spent $25 and 12-15 hours on it.  So you know, time or money.  But I feel accomplished, even though all my friends think I'm nuits for doing it completely by hand.  My reasoning for this is that learning how to use a sewing machine would have been infinitely more stressful to me.  At least this way was relaxing.  I know enough about cross-stitch to be able to make a simple halloween costume.  I can't do anything that will hold up in the washing machine, or has any complicated seams, but a cape I can handle.  The finished product:

I used 2 yards of the red material and less than one yard of the white material.  I had my husband drape it over his shoulders, pinned it in a few places, hemmed it here and there, and added the fur trim.  I sewed the outer seam inside-out, so you can't see the stitches (obviously I don't know any technical terms here) but I didn't know how to do that on the inner seam, so I stitched it right-side-out.  Joining the fur together on the corners was a little tricky, but I just swag'ed it, and it turned out okay.  Then the chain (which I found at Michael's for $3) I just secured with some thread, and there you have it!  A regal cloak.  The costume store wanted ten dollars for a plastic chain. 

Tonight we had the coconut chicken again (I'm telling you, it's good!) and a side of asparagus.  My husband got some white truffle oil for his birthday and we drizzled it over the asparagus.  It was just okay, but we'll try it again in another way soon.  At the store this time I bought several bags of the frozen mango to keep on hand for this recipe.  I also bought some frozen pineapple to try in place of the mango.  It should be pretty good I think, especially with the coconut.

AND I got my new issue of Every Day With Rachael Ray!  It's mostly thanksgiving food, of which I am not the biggest fan, but there were some good dessert recipes that I tore out before recycling the magazine.  Since I'll have a large crowd for the few weeks around that time, I'm sure I'll plenty of opportunities to try them out.

We had some crazy meltdowns today, and I'm hoping I can keep it together until the weekend.  Or at the very least until bedtime :)

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