Let the carving party begin!

Let the carving party start! I brought some pumpkins and my tools over to the Johnson's house for a little carving fun.

Liz, a fellow carver.



I chose to do Michael Jackson from Thriller. Here I am transfering my pattern to the pumpkin.

Liz chose a saucy little cat with a monacle.

Here's MJ all transferred. After peeling off the paper, I connected all of the dots with a pen. The lines will be scratched into the pumpkin. The dark parts will be carved all the way through.

The scratching begins. And yes, that's the special tool from a previous post.

Cam is a die hard Bears fan. We couldn't find a pattern for her, so I printed off a picture of a Bears helmet and made her a pattern from that.

Beak's pumpkin.

Liz's cat. Beak helped her finish the bow tie.

Here's MJ, all done. Next step, light him up!




While picking pumpkins at the farm, Sue (my mother in law) and I saw a beheaded pumpkin. She looked at it and declared that it looked like a planter. She then had the most Martha like idea. Take a pumpkin, hollow it out, plop in a mum and BINGO, a mumkin! Genius.


Another crummy day...

It seems like all we have is crummy, rainy, blustery days lately. I tried to collect some leaves for making postcards yesterday. I couldn't find enough. I feel like I somehow missed the beautiful, sweater wearing fall. All the leaves were green and now they are brown! Fear not, I have not given up. I will find some worthy leaves and the postcards will be made!!!

p.s. If you'd like one, let me know!


Pumpkin tools

Here are all of the tools that I use for pumpkin carving. Most are pretty standard, but one in particular is special.

Most of these tools will come with a book of patterns. I have a few books that are especially cool. One has patterns for the front and back of your pumpkin. For example, the front may have a haunted house on it. Then the back pattern is a couple of ghosts which project on the wall behind it (see the middle carving). I like the books, but most of my really cool patterns I find online.

These tools are for transfering your pattern (which you should copy and size to your pumpkin, then tape it on). You basically just go around and poke holes into the pumpkin along the pattern lines. When you're done, you peel off the pattern and I like to use a permanent marker/pen to connect the dots. Otherwise it can be a bit daunting looking at all those holes. The middle and bottom pokers also have a drill on them for making perfect little holes. The roller poker has never really worked for me.

I've had these since I was a little girl. they are only to be used for cutting the top (or bottom) out of your pumpkin. They are to blunt and big to be used for much else.

These are the scrapers I've collected over the years. They work ok, but a nice big spoon has always worked well for me.

These are for most of the carving work I do. Any large pieces get taken out with these.

For the finer details, I have finers carvers. You have to be careful with these, they're pretty sharp.

These are my favorite tools of all. The other tools all come with pattern books, but these you have to buy seperately. I don't really use the carving end...

...but this is the money end. It's what lets me scrape off the pumpkin skin without carving all the way through. It always sort of reminds me of an orange peeler. I stock up on these after every halloween when they're ridiculously on sale. That way I have extras to give to friends!

House pants

So for those that don't know, I live my life in my house in house pants. The second I get home, off go the jeans and on go the comfy pants. Now comfy pants are not pajama pants. PJ's are worn to bed, house/comfy pants are not. They are to be worn around the house and occasionally to the grocery store when I'm feeling to lazy to throw on a pair of jeans. I decided one day to try and make my own comfy pants. I went online to find a free pattern. No go. So I found this Kwik Sew pattern at Hancock fabrics. It was $12, but I used one of those beautiful 40% off coupons that sewing and craft stores like to send out. This is the pattern.

Cutting the pieces out was a challenge, but only because the cat kept pouncing on it. He was eventually given some paper scraps to keep him occupied. The pattern consisted of only 5 pieces, of which I used 4. It came with different pieces to make different waistbands. I chose to make mine out of the same fabric as the rest of the pants.

My first pair was made out of grey sweatshirt material. The legs are pretty big, but oh so comfy.

After I made these,I lived in them for quite some time. They came up to the cabin and basically ruled the whole weekend.

I had originally planned to make the pants out of a knit jersey, but couldn't find it the first time out to the fabric store. After the joy I got from the first pair, I decided to look again for some knit jersey. I found the fabric for this pair in the Dance/Swimming fabric area of Joann's.

I changed up the waist for this pair. The first pair called for some elastic in the waist, but I thought it might make it a little uncomfortable in a lighter fabric. To make sure the pants looked good and didn't fall off, I doubled the waistband and now I can fold it over. I have lots of house pants, but these two are my favorites. I think the fabric for the grey ones was $12 and the blue ones were $14. They took about an hour to make each (after the pattern was cut) and I think they rule. If you'd like a pair (size medium), I'd be happy to make them for you! It takes 2.25 yards of fabric.


Thanks, Grandma!

My grandma recently gave me her old sewing kit. It was a bit of a mess,but after an hour or so of a little organizing magic, this is what I got.

I threw some stuff away, this is what I was left with.

The color coded thread is my favorite part.


More pumpkins

I had the pleasure of going out to my grandparents-in-law's farm a few weeks ago to do a little pumpkin picking. It was raining and muddy and fantastic. My arms hurt for days after and we actually had to go back up to pick the rest of the patch a week later. Here are a few of the pumpkins we picked.

There were at least 4 trailers full.

Yeah, it was muddy. These tracks were from the loader (BIG farm tractor).

This is the one I picked for me. It is the perfect pumpkin. It weighs about 45 pounds. Those would be a man's size 10 boot sitting next to it.


So I love to carve pumpkins. I always liked it as a kid, but as an adult I discovered a whole new way to carve. Last year I think I did at least 4-5 pumpkins. The following are the ones I remembered to take pictures of.

This is Edgar Allen Poe and his famous raven. Don't believe me? Keep going...

I'll be honest, I used a pattern. Still pretty cool though, right?

Texas Chainsaw Massacre


Knick Knack Craftywack

Just trying this whole blog thing out. My hope is that this is going to get me to do a little more crafting. I have so many things I'd like to do craftwise, this way I can keep track of it all!