Halloween is my husband’s favorite holiday, so every year I try to add at least one crafty item to our decorations for him. Since he’s home more now, this year we were able to work together, and the result was three spooky cool projects…
Spider Web Halloween Countdown Calendar
While we have several candy holding countdown calendars around here (including this Count Von Count one I posted about earlier this year,) as we get older and, well, rounder, I’ve started looking for non-food options 😀 Which is why we decided to recreate a countdown calendar I originally saw on Pinterest ~ each day you add a toy spider to the web. No additional calories at all!
We scoured thrift stores for the perfect gothic frame, which he cleaned and painted while I sourced and attached the numbers, web and spiders.
I’m showing a picture from earlier this month with just a few spiders, but as October goes on the weight of those cheap plastic arachnids is really stretching the web! We’ll need to solve that problem for next year.
Haunted Dollhouse Mansion
This is project that took the longest – we’d actually been biking to garage sales for over a year, hoping to find a dollhouse available for cheap. (Once, after seeing a dollhouse stored in an open garage during a ride, I almost knocked on the door to see if they’d sell it! I couldn’t go through with it, but that I even thought about doing something so brazen should tell you how determined I was to create a haunted dollhouse this year.)
We ended up lucking on this Calico Critters Cloverleaf Mansion at a thrift store one afternoon back in July – lots of missing pieces as you can see! I tried eBay for doors and porch, but they either weren’t available or people wanted exorbitant prices. So we made the missing parts ourselves…
Here it is glowing at night –
and a close up so the purple of the lights shows a bit better –
A LOT of work went into finishing this project, but I thought I’d just call out a few things if you are thinking about making one yourself.
One, Blick Art Materials (used to be called Dick Blick) has an AMAZING supply of spray paint in shades you just can’t find at the local hardware store. The main gray for the body of the dollhouse came from there – 3 cans! (This is a really big dollhouse :D)
Two, we tried several different ways to get the silhouettes in the windows, but what worked best was transparent overhead projector sheets. Given the ubiquity of PowerPoint these days, I hadn’t thought about overhead projectors in years, but going old school did the trick. (The silhouettes themselves are free printables created by Dave Lowe. He’s an illustrator as well as a set and prop designer and I’m combing the archive on his blog for other amazing Halloween decor ideas. Stay tuned!)
Three, there’s black foam core on the backside, trimmed to fit. Partly to clean it up, but also because the purple lights in the windows shine brighter with it there. The lights are just mini LEDs you can get almost anywhere, but ours came with remotes which makes turning the lights on and off so much easier than removing the foam core back ever day.
Cat Eye Chair Covers
Since these were sewing/embroidery, this was a project I did alone ~ but my husband did make it easier by being gone on a solo bike ride while I was working 😀
(The TRICK / TREAT quilted pillows are from 2013! Sometimes when I look up stuff like this to post, I can’t believe how long ago I made them; feels like just yesterday.)
Doing these Halloween projects together was a lot of fun and there’s plans for a (my favorite holiday) Christmas craft or two that take advantage of both our skill sets, as well. But time’s sure passing quickly ~ maybe we should add working together to build a time machine to our to-do list!