Scarecrow from Arkham Asylum

Happy Halloween! It’s finally here! I think I am most excited because I am finished with our costumes that have been in the making for months.

My son decided in August, he wanted to be the character Scarecrow from Batmen, sure, BUT WAIT! Not just any Scarecrow, he wanted to be the one from Batman Arkham Asylum video game. This took some research, and a whole lot of thinking. Here is what he wants to be:

batman-arkham-asylum-artwork-scarecrowRight?!?!

I thought about this for weeks. Then I started breaking the costume down into “no problems” and “this will take some time.” First, doesn’t it look like he is wearing long hand warmers? That’s what I thought! So I found this very simple crochet hand warmer pattern,  here, and got to work.

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Step one, done, quick and painless. Now for the mask. No matter how I screwed up the rest of the costume, the mask will make it! We went to Spirit Halloween shop to look for a small, mouth only, gas mask. Done! we also found some cool long skeleton fingers, not exactly needles, but it worked. My initial plan was to crochet a long hat, with eye holes, leaving room for the mask. This plan was thrown out since the mask was to large for my son. Instead I crocheted into the plastic to make the mask one piece. I had to make the neck long, so I crocheted back and forth, and just added a tie to the back. My poor son had to sit next to me the entire time, I kept trying it on him to get it just right. The end result, I must say, was better then I expected.

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My husband found some fabric at A.C. Moore, it was 3 yards for $5, sold! It was very heavy material, like the kind you make drapes out of. the cowl was easy, two large triangles and two squares,  simple. The pants on the other hand….super difficult! I had the bright idea to use some of his pajama pants as a template. Sounds like a good plan right? WRONG! The pajama pant material was nice and stretchy, the drape material was not. He couldn’t even pull them past his thighs, it was awful! I split the seems, and sewed two triangles to compensate. Lucky for me, most of the Batman characters make their own costumes, Woo-hoo. I added yarn stitching to this unforgiving material, which made my hands sore beyond belief, oh the pain we endure for the happiness of our offspring. He was super excited, and I was feeling pretty accomplished!

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Have a Crafty Halloween!

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Magnificent Maleficent

I don’t have very many family traditions, we’re not really the kind of family that keeps them. The one tradition that hasn’t faded away is Halloween. Maybe being born on Oct 29th makes me a Halloween baby. Maybe because my sister and first son were both born in October too. But every single year, since I could remember, my mom always made a big fuss over Halloween.

We’d spend two months getting ready for it. Sometimes this included scouring the churches and Good Wills for our costumes. Two to three nights before “the big night” my mom would open up her Avon hutch. Now this was a large, orange wooden hutch packed, like a game of Tetris, with small Avon boxes. She had all the colors of the rainbow, glitter, fake eyelashes, and little gems you can glue on your face. It didn’t really matter what our costumes were, it was our make-up that everyone went nuts over.

My mom only really had one costume, a bumble bee. Pretty sure she still has it. Some years she would dress in all black but she ALWAYS painted her face; a dog, a cat, a she-devil. This lady could be a make-up artist for movies with some of the things she could do.

Since we’ve moved to the East coast and my family is on the West, we do everything possible to stay connected. I decided to use my new found crochet talent to make my mom a hat for Halloween. Scouring Pinterest (I know, I’m addicted) I came across this Etsy shop, Harvester Products,  that has AMAZING Disney crochet hats….and hair! Naturally, as a crafter, we look at something and think, “I can make that.” So I put myself to the test and started making my Mom’s favorite character, Maleficent.

I started with your standard crochet beanie, with short ear flaps and a tiny earflap to make the “widow’s peak” of the headdress. I stitched a purple chain down the center of the beanie.

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The horns were simple enough, with black yarn, and starting with a magic loop, I crocheted it in HDC throughout, adding gradual and dramatic increases here and there, adding purple where I felt it looked good. There was no rhyme or reason to how I made the horns, so I do not have a pattern to share with you, it was just me experimenting. Then I stuffed them with stuffing. IMG_0217

Here’s is really where I had to think about what I was doing. How would I get them to stand up straight? How would I keep the stuffing from spilling out through the DC of the hat? I went to my local Hobby Lobby, and walked around until, ta-da, floral wire! I inserted 4 wires in each horn, and spiraled the bottom to prevent poking. Then I crocheted a circle to fit the base of the horns and attached each to the hat. The wires helped with the unique shaping of Maleficent’s horns.

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I had such a difficult time keeping the headdress a secret while it made it’s we to my mom in CA via USPS. She was super excited when she received it. To be honest, I was sad to see it go, but it made my mom happy and I know she will treasure it. Here is my finished product:

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Have a Crafty Day!

 

So many Characters

I literally can’t stop making character hats. After posting on a crafts page for my new location, I have been bombarded with character hat requests. It has been amazing! I feel blessed and challenged, not to mention crazy busy. I thought I’d share two with you all, Halloween AND Christmas are just around the corner, hint hint.

My very good, and old friend, requested Minion hats for her 3 little Minions. This was not a very big challenge for me since my genius sister, and author of Chucks for Chancho, had already developed a pattern and posted a tutorial on her blog, and she also has them for sale in her ETSY shop. My friend wanted braids added and a pretty bow for her little girl. So I made a few slit adjustments to my sister’s pattern. I lengthened the ear flaps by substituting single crochet to a half double crochet, added braids for the girl, and twists for the boy.

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Since these were the same, but different, I wanted her older daughter’s to be unique. I made the eyes smaller so we could use two and only used blue in the braids. I also added a tongue for fun. She liked it so much she ordered another for her sister.

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To make the tongue make a magic loop, half double crochet 8, DO NOT CLOSE WITH A SLIP STITCH, simple bind off, synch your magic loop tight and sew the flat edge against the mouth.

The same day my friend asked for these, I received a request from a new friend for a few hats as well. Two were Hello Kitty hats. I recall my sister making a Hello Kitty inspired hat, so I could have easily asked her for her pattern, or asked her to make it, but where’s the fun in that? I think I rocked it on my own =)

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Have a Crafty Day!