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Saturday, October 30, 2021

31 Days of Halloween - Harry Potter Shadowbox


Time to show off a new shadowbox. I inherited tiny Harry Potter figures from my mom. They were ornaments for a small tree, I think. The shadow box is one I've had for about a year. When I bought it, I thought inspiration would come to me immediately, but when I got it home, nothing came to me. So I packed it away with my other lonely, unused boxes. Waiting patiently for me to reach in my hand and pull one out.

Today was that day for this box, and I went full Hogwarts on it. I started with the first shelf, which lent itself to a cozy library for Hermione. Before COVID, I had been facilitating craft workshops featuring shadow boxes. For these, I crafted tiny little books out of corrugated cardboard and patterned paper. I had some left over and used them today. Hermione looks very comfortable up there.

Next up (down, actually) I gave Ron Weasley a room from his nightmares. You can't see it well, but it's filled with spiders and spider webs, and Ron is none to  keen on spiders. I'm sure he would like to know how to apparate from his place in the shadow box to just about anywhere...
Harry is next, holding his broom outside. His passion for flying helped him gain a place on Gryffindor's Quidditch team. His keen eye and flying talent helped him catch the Snitch and win the game  many a time.
My last two figures are on the bottom shelf. Headmaster Albus Dumbledore  and Potions teacher Severus Snape. It's fitting they're on the bottom, as they form the foundation of Hogwarts as well as the book and movie series. 
Throughout the shadow box, I scrambled to find tiny supplies to make each scene appropriate to each character.  There are buttons, stickers, jewelry parts, floral moss, stickers, wooden diecuts and corks,  all transformed into scrying bowls, brooms, books and other wizarding items.
And my Halloween shadow box is finished. I think it turned out awesome. I've made several Halloween shadow boxes, and even sold a couple. This one, as much as I like it, is going to a young girl who is just getting into the Harry Potter series. I think she's going to really like it...

Ready for another gruesome giggle? Enjoy!

Friday, October 29, 2021

31 Days of Halloween - Journal Page (trying new technique)


Hello, my name is Patacake and I'm a craftaholic. I slipped off the wagon the other day and met my gf at a thrift store. While there, I found a full set of chalk pastels for $3, and the color of the price tag cut the price by 50%!

I've never tried chalk pastels before, so I had to bring out my creative journal to make a page. I admit I watched a YouTube video to see what to do with the chalk. I didn't get quite the effect I wanted, but it's my first attempt, and I will be experimenting in the future with the pastels.

Meanwhile, I took inspiration from the season and created a page devoted to Autumn. I used red, orange, brown, green, and yellow and used a baby wipe to smooth out and blend the colors. After the page was dry, I  added some background stamping. I added a sticker for the title of my page, and left room for a Haiku. Some pumpkin stickers, some trim and various Fall leaves frame my poem. 

Do you journal? I have several active journals at the moment. I have my travel journal, my Book of Lists journal, one for craft projects I want to do, another for my mood of the day and one for art,  gratitude and grief journals, and a few others. I write in some, draw, color and doodle in others and even collage from magazine cuttings and images found online. Journals keep me going when I'm depressed, save memories good and bad, and let me create with words and pictures whenever I feel like it. One helped me through the loss of my husband 4 years ago.

So I guess you could say I'm a journal junkie LOL And for one more laugh, here's  gruesome giggle for you...

Thursday, October 28, 2021

31 Days of Halloween - Scarecrow Welcome Halloween Decor


I finally decided what to do with the last of the wooden blocks I had painted this month. I had a small scarecrow attached on a stick I had bought years ago from the Dollar Tree. I beheaded her and glued her onto my wooden block. After adding stickers and Autumn leaves, My 28th project of the month is finished, and the easiest one of the whole lot!!

Just three more days until Halloween, and still so much to do!! Have you watched any of the Halloween-themed movies or specials this month? My daughter and I have been watching one movie a day. So far, her favorite is Hocus Pocus. Mine is Nightmare before Christmas, but we're watching Coco tonight and I might change my mind. 

Meanwhile, I have another gruesome giggle for you. Enjoy...

Wednesday, October 27, 2021

31 Days of Halloween - Pumpkin Trio Decor

Today I decided to dig into my Dollar Tree pumpkins. I painted each of them, even the orange one (I toned the bright orange down). After they dried, I glued tea light candles to their tops (I really need to buy the battery-operated ones). Then I painted alpha stickers with black acrylic paint and attached them onto the front.

I added leaves and flowers to surround the candles. Lord knows I have buckets of fake flowers to use up! Finally, I decided to make a couple stands for my pumpkins, so that they are all different heights. I painted a dessert cup and a tiny condiment cup and glued the pumpkins to them. It really makes a pretty decoration that catches the eye.

One more gruesome giggle for your pleasure, crafters...


Tuesday, October 26, 2021

31 Days of Halloween - Creepy Candles

And here I thought my toilet paper rolls crafting days were a thing of the past. These creepy candles were made using empty toilet paper rolls that I painted with black acrylic paint after first using my hot glue gun on one end to look like dripping was. 

After the paint dried, I glued in tea lights (which I will switch out with the battery-operated ones later--no use taking chances). After gluing the "candlesticks" together, I  tied a festive ribbon around them and added a black flower. Too much black, so I added a felt jack-o-lantern and now it's decorating my living room (which is getting a little crowded).
Can you believe it's less  than a week until the big night? Are you decorating for the holiday? Sending cards out? Sewing up costumes? Going to a party? If so, you still have (a little) time to get crafty.

Here's another gruesome giggle for you...


Monday, October 25, 2021

31 Days of Halloween - Digital Paper for You

I haven't played in Photoshop in a long time, and I really liked making my own designer papers. So today I am offering two of my own digital papers for anyone who wants to use them. You can click and save image and use it for digital projects. You can also print them out and use them for cards, upcycling and mixed media projects. 

Here's the second paper. I hope you like these papers and have a chance to use them in your crafting. If you do, please credit me with the name: Patacake Designs

Now for some gruesome giggles...

Sunday, October 24, 2021

31 Days of Halloween- Upcycled Ceramic Pumpkins Decor

I found a couple ceramic pumpkins in my Halloween stash, and thought they needed a little, I don't know, more. I raided my jewelry supplies and wound one pumpkin with silver chain, adding some dangly metal feathers (used to be from a pair of earrings but I lost one). I wound gold chain around the other pumpkin and added a gold charm of the moon and a star to it.

Not much, very easily accomplished, but I like the look of them better now. The hardest part was waiting for the glue to dry as I wound the chains, and using teeny tiny jump rings to attach the charms. I guess I better go to the eye doctor for stronger glasses this year!

Next up is a gruesome giggle for your warped sense of humor... 

Saturday, October 23, 2021

31 Days of Halloween - Surprised Pumpkin Halloween Decor


Last year I had bought a dozen Styrofoam pumpkins. It's about time I did something with them! So I carved out a face,  painted the mouth black and popped some plastic eyeballs in him. He looks surprised...hmm, does he know what's happening to him? Does he know his fate is in the claws of that hungry crow?

His nose didn't look right to me,  so I pushed a cork in it. He still looked...plain. So I grabbed some spider webbing and covered half his face, adding the spider who wove it. On top of his head, I glued on some raffia for the crow to nest in. It looks like he's made himself at home. And I wouldn't want to be that pumpkin!

Hope you like my unfortunate Jack-o-lantern. Here's another gruesome giggle for you...

Friday, October 22, 2021

31 days of Halloween - Spooky Wreath Halloween Decor


I thought it was time for a Halloween wreath makeover. Last year I created this wreath but it was almost completely black. You couldn't see any details, not even the crows. So I removed 1 crow and added some flowers. The wreath is covered in feathers, which is why I determined it to feature crows. I also added a skeleton's arms cradling the crow's nest.

The flowers add some contrasting color, and now you can see the crow on the top of the wreath, just about to take flight.

The wreath is improved, but it's not my favorite. I might just do a little tweaking next year too,, until I love what I created. But time's is running out- less than 2 weeks left before the big day. So much to do, so little time!! Meanwhile, I hope this gruesome giggle puts a smile on your face...

Thursday, October 21, 2021

31 Days of Halloween - Surprise! Halloween Outdoor Decor


Today I started putting out my Halloween decor on the front porch. In pulling out the Halloween decor from the garage this year, I found a bin labeled 2009. I can't believe I could have forgotten about this bin for 12 years, so I'm in doubt as far as the correctness of the date label. Sorting through the bin, however, I happened onto my witch's cauldron that has been MIA for the last few Halloweens. I used it for candy when trick-or-treaters  come to the door.

This year I decided to make front porch out of it. After lining the bottom with bricks to keep it stable, I attached these gigantic monster hands to sticks before using hot glue to hold my light-up Jack-o-Lantern. He does look a little worse for wear, but his expression works well with my project. The cord isn't long enough to reach the available outlet, so I attached Dollar Tree mini Lights so he can spook the neighbors. 

To hide the sticks, I added a garland of Fall leaves (actually it hides everything). The hardest part of this project was waiting for the glue to dry. I had to hold each hand against Jack-o and it seemed like an hour before I could confidently let go.

It's a start. I do have some of the projects I've already posted in my windows and on my doors, but this is the first stand-alone Halloween project decorating my porch. Don't worry, it will be joined by more. I still have almost two weeks before Halloween!!

And with that, I'll let you see the newest gruesome giggle..

Wednesday, October 20, 2021

31 Days of Halloween - Flower Power Halloween Decor


Today I hot glued a skull onto a giant glittery spier. Then I didn't know what to do with him...

I had mentioned in a previous post that we lost our dog, Wilson. My neighbor volunteers at a Dog shelter and has been so supportive when we lost our him. She called as soon as the shelter received a small older hypo-allergenic dog [they go fast] and we were able to adopt a terrier mix we call Honey. Our neighbor loves flowers, and loves Halloween, so...

So I reached into my Halloween Bag of Tricks (my stash tub) and pulled out a Dollar Tree Styrofoam pumpkin. Yes, I could see my mutant skellie spider sitting on a pumpkin. In fact, it would be really twisted to plant him among flowers with little baby spiders here and there.

The pumpkin was really orange--I mean fluorescent orange, so I wrapped gauze around the whole thing to tone it down before placing him among various flowers. I couldn't resist giving him a reason for his ghastly expression by putting flowers on his head (I don't think he  likes them). After creating my floral project, I gifted my neighbor with it to thank her for her part in our new family member

Challenges I am Entering:
Everybody Art - Fun with Friends 
Ike's World - Anything Goes
Shopping our Stash - Pumpkin Spice & Everything Nice

Okay, time for some gruesome giggles...

Tuesday, October 19, 2021

31 Days of Halloween - Wish Upon a Halloween Star


We're more than halfway to the big day, crafters. Have you been as busy as I have been? Today's project is an upcycled metal star that I used fluid acrylic painting onto give it dimension and a gruesome look. I decided to seat a skeleton on on point of the star so that he's holding a  pumpkin in one hand and hold on with the other. I added Halloween-themed ribbon on each tip and finished it off with a raffia bow at the top. This project isn't too scary, but does scream Halloween, don't you think?

Challenges I am Entering:
Get Creative - AG or Holiday (Halloween)
We Love 2 Create - Anything Mixed Media Goes
Arty Divas - Anything Goes
Classic Design - Anything Goes

Before you hop over to another blog, check out today's gruesome giggles...

Monday, October 18, 2021

31 days of Halloween - Edgar Allen Poe Trinket Box


I used to love reading Edgar Allen Poe. His stories brought me goosebumps and his life history was so sad. I even wrote a thesis paper for college on Poe and his life and writings (a long, long time ago). So it would be totally natural for me to feature Mr. Poe during this month of macabre celebration.

So today I'm featuring a trinket box I created using a digi image from Fairy Ink. I painted this thrift store box black and then covered it with Halloween-themed scrapbook paper. Adding buttons, skull beads (for the legs), pearls, paper  flowers, and even skeleton limbs, I gave my box something even Mr. Poe would  admire.

And then I left the yellow velvet on the inside of the  box. The lid slide off from back to front. To keep it  intact, I covered the outside with ModPodge before calling it finished. Hope you like it as much as I know Mr. Poe would...
And now for some gruesome giggles to finish of my post...

Sunday, October 17, 2021

31 Days of Halloween - Macabre Mussie-Tussie Ornament

Time got away from me today, so I'm posting a project I did a couple years ago, but never posted. The project is called a mussie tussie. These come in all shapes, themes and sizes, but mine starts with a toilet paper roll. First, I adhered Haloween-themed scrapbook paper to the roll, then stapled one end flat, covering it with lace to hide the staples (and make it look pretty).

Next, I added a Dollar Tree skeleton and a faux flower also from the store. I used some shiny packing strips to keep my skellie and flower from falling out. I decided another piece of lace around the top would balance out the look. I added a couple Halloween tombstones (wooden) to the front, and made a hanger from some black trim.

I've made mussie tussies for Christmas, St. Patrick's Day and Valentine's Day. I even facilitated a craft workshop that featured them. They make unique stocking stuffers and you can even put a gift card in one. And I made them all from Dollar Store items while recycling the cardboard roll.

I hope you're looking forward to the end of my post, where I always add a gruesome giggles cartoon to leave you smiling or laughing. Enjoy...

Saturday, October 16, 2021

31 Days of Halloween - Dia de los Muertos Decor


Although Dia de los Muertos, or Day of the Dead doesn't come until after Halloween, here in the USA many people merge the two holidays together when it comes to decorating. Halloween is all about the costumes, candy, scary movies and decorations. 

Dia de los Muertos is all about honoring those in your family who have died. On this day, people often go to the cemetery and spruce up the gravesite, bringing food, candles, crosses and personal possessions. "According to tradition, the gates of heaven are opened at midnight on October 31 and the spirits of children can rejoin their families for 24 hours. The spirits of adults can do the same on November 2." ( 

The sugar skull is often a candy offered for sale. Now you see sugar skull mugs, stickers, decor and costumes in stores here. I decided to create something for Dia de los Muertos since we tie it into Halloween. The wooden block I had painted purple made an excellent base for my sugar skull sticker. I had one remaining piece of purple trim that I attached to the top, adding tiny, colorful skull beads left over from a craft workshop I had facilitated before COVID.

Since the holiday is all about offerings and gatherings, I added flowers and a skull on top of my wood base. I love how colorful this holiday is. If you want to know more about this Mexican holiday, click on the link above. Or you can check out the Disney/Pixar movie Coco, where you can get a real feel for the importance of  remembering and honoring family. Here's a short YouTube video you can watch.

Now for some gruesome giggles...

Friday, October 15, 2021

31 Days of Halloween - Hocus Pocus Halloween Decor

Today I've used one of my 6"x3" wooden blocks (I only have one left).I got this free image, inspired by the Disney movie Hocus Pocus, off of Pinterest and traced it onto my orange acrylic-painted block. During the decluttering I've been doing, I found an old pad of copy paper, the kind that when you press on the paper, it transfers whatever you're writing/drawing in black onto your surface.

Instead of coloring my image, I left it as a silhouette. I used Dollar Store sticker letters to spell out the quote, "I smell children," spoken by one of the characters. Framing my block with black paint along the edges, I added black lace at the top and baker's twine below the quote. A simple project yet eye-catching, especially if you're a Disney fan.

I painted my last wooden block purple, and now I'm trying to think of a good quote or picture for it. Any ideas? While you're thinking,  please enjoy my gruesome giggles offering...


Thursday, October 14, 2021

31 Days of Halloween - Mr. Potato Head-inspired Halloween Decor

I decided to get inspired by the move Toy Story; first with Mr. Potato Head and his interchangeable parts, and second, with the child who likes to takes his little sister's doll's and other toys and make scary new characters out of them (I think that was in the first movie). I love the Toy Story series of movies.

I have this bin overflowing with Dollar Tree Halloween supplies, so I pulled out a skull, a skeleton and a pumpkin. I love creating 3D art for Halloween, and what goes best at Halloween than skeletons and pumpkins? Pulling off the skeleton's limbs, I stuck them into my (Styrofoam) pumpkin. Next I added the skull. After I glued them all so they stayed on, I realized they were not quite balanced. In fact, he looks like he's either dancing or taking a bow...

...which led me to adhere him onto the wood slice and spell out the word Welcome. If you think the inspiration is a little subtle, I get inspired by so many things, and smells, and music, and memories. It's very difficult to go to a thrift store without coming out with bags and bags of things that inspired me. Is that the way with you? Do you think of a project, and then collect the materials, or do the materials inspire you to create?

Challenges I am Entering:

As You Like It - Favorite non-card project/why you like it
ModSquad - Pumpkins Everywhere

Ah, well, here's some gruesome giggles while you're thinking about it...

Wednesday, October 13, 2021

31 Days of Halloween- Clean Bones Halloween Decor

It's time to play with my skeletons again. I would love to decorate a pumpkin just like this, but this year I don't think I'll have the time to work on it. However, I think it turned out wickedly good in miniature. I again used one of the wooden 6"x3" wooden bases, this time painted orange. Can you guess what I used for his bath tub?

I washed and painted a soft cream cheese container (instead of recycling it, I upcycled it).Once the paint was dry, I gently ripped off a couple feet from another skeleton to make it look like a "claw-foot" bath tub. His foamy bubbles are just pieces of spider webbing, topped with pearls for bubbles. My skellie is not squeamish, so he shares his "once-a-year" bath with his pet spiders.

I placed a pumpkin next to the tub. I can't decide whether I want to leave it there or place a greeting. What do you think the caption should read? Privacy please? The water's fine; come on in? Who's there? For now, I'll call this project finished. I can always change it later.

Challenges I am Entering:

Crafting Happiness - October Colors (Orange, Purple, Green, Black 

Now check out the latest gruesome giggle...

Tuesday, October 12, 2021

31 Days of Halloween - Pumpkin Delivery


Today I didn't have a lot of time to craft, so I took a ceramic planter shaped like a pick-up truck and removed the summer flowers from the truck's bed. I popped in a few pumpkins and greenery and added this cute cat rub-on in the window. That's it, Less than 5 minutes and my project is complete for today. I think it's cute. I like buying/having things that I can change out for the seasons.

Ready for your daily dose of gruesome giggles?

Monday, October 11, 2021

31 Days of Halloween - Too Cute to Spook Halloween Decor

I created more Halloween decor using the wooden blocks I painted black. Today's project  sports a cute ghost sticker. In fact, he's so cute it inspired me to use the phrase :Too Cute to Spook". I had a small piece of lace leftover from a previous project, which I adhered onto the top front of my wood block. After using white glitter stickers for the greeting, I added a star button, but it looked lacking somehow. Did I mention I have a problem with white space? LOL

I dipped into the bag of buttons and came up with a few Jack-o-Lanterns that I glued onto the lace. After riffling through my ribbons and trim, I found this stretchy,  glittery string (?) and tied it around the lace, and now I feel my project is ready to show off. My living room shelf is getting quite crowded with all the Halloween projects I've made so far, and the month isn't even half over! That won't stop me from featuring a Halloween craft for each day of October, though.

I hope you get a chance to craft today! Here's a gruesome giggle to brighten your day...