Skeletons and Shocktails

My 22 year old daughter's friends were discussing what costumes they were going to buy for a Halloween party and she told them she was going to paint hers.

She announced that she didn't think growing up she ever had a costume from the store.  While her friends seemed shocked by that, her tone didn't sound as if she felt the least bit deprived due to that fact.

So she bought a $12.96 black dress from H&M, the same store my awesome tea towels came from, and used a pair of black leggins she already had.

First she took white chalk and outlined her skeletal profile to sort of proportionately fit where those bones lined up on her.

After she chalked all the bones on she took regular craft paint in grey, black and white, and started filling in and shading the bones to give them a three dimensional look.

She brushed the chalk off and when it was done it looked amazing.  I was so impressed with it.

She did the front, the back and down the length of the sleeves.

She also bought a pair of black shoes from the thrift store and painted those.

She glowed nicely under the black lights with her ratted hair.

Pay no attention to that wolf disguised as a gramma in the back ground or Little Red's basket and glowing leg behind the skeleton.

The night of the party she put it on then painted her shoulders and the rest of the vertebra right up her neck onto her face.

She was awarded a 3rd place cupcake liner award ribbon but by that time she had a shocktail or two in her boney body.

I'd tell 'ya more, but we do have rules.......

Linking the daughter up at:

Twirl & Take A Bow @AllThingsHeart&Home
Make the Sceen Monday @AlderberryHill
What's It Wednesday @Ivy and Elephants
Wildly Original Party @IGottaCreate

Follow on Bloglovin


DIY Halloween Costume Ribbons

Last night I had an ah ha moment, that was more like an "Aaaahhhhh" moment with a touch of fear in its tone.

Cupcake Liner Halloween Award Ribbons

Halloween party today, no costume prizes or trophy's.  Bad hostess.

It's not that we haven't had trophy's or prizes at past parties.  I made trophy's one year that I thought were pretty cool.

And I still have them ... the Golden Ghost awards .....  no one wanted to carry them around, so they were forgotten when it was time to leave.

Garage Sale Gold Ghost Costume Trophy

I thought they were pretty clever.  Ghosts I found at garage sales, spray painted gold, and then they each had a glow stick in side.  The first place one is around here somewhere too, found these two in the garage.

I think I also have some prizes I made.  Vintage metal trays turned magnet boards.
*Note to self; must find those....

We also had a pumpkin carving contest.  Yeah, I still have those trophy's too, the Glowing Gourd Award.

Garage Sale Pumpkin Carving Trophy
Various little pumpkin heads from garage sales all spray painted silver.  Look, these even still have the old glow sticks inside.  Bliss are you lazy?  This party was in 2010.

I recalled seeing some cupcake liner award ribbons but I could not find the exact ones as I remembered them.  So if it was YOU, thanks, you gave me the idea I just didn't pin it and don't remember where I saw it.

Enter Google.  Google sent me to Little Miss Maggie for a peek at some patriotic ribbons she made.  I know they are nothing like Halloween, I just needed to see how some were put together.

This was last minute, I had to use what I had on hand.

Supplies:  Three each of two sizes of cupcake liners, curling ribbon, one sheet of black sparkly card stock, an orange Swatch bag, encyclopedia pages, tape, jagged edge scissors and the stapler.

While I was busy assembling prize ribbons, this is what was going on to the right of me.....

6 pumpkins were doomed to having their brains pulled out.

The family has a carving system that involves laying out a big piece of plastic and group gutting their pumpkins.  Those are one of my son's boxers showing but I'll have you know he wears his pants all the way up!  No pants on the ground for him, but it sort of looks like someone gave him a wedgie.

I printed out the awards on old encyclopedia pages.  1st, 2nd, 3rd, funny, scary, best couple and for honorable mentions three "Great Costume".

At our party I guess it's all about the glory, not the prize or the trophy.  Every man's dream must be strutting around in a large crowd sporting a cupcake liner award ribbon that tells everyone else the hosts picked your costume, yeah.

Cupcake Liner Halloween Award Ribbons

The ribbons and cut up orange bag are all either glued together, stapled, and there is even some electrical tape.

(You know, just to get rid of the Golden Ghost awards, I should clean them up and force them on people).

9 award ribbons, one hours time. Cost close to FREE.

Cupcake Liner Halloween Award Ribbons

No one at our house owns a Swatch, nor do we have any idea where that orange bag came from.

She called it half human, half pumpkin.

Giving Link Ribbons at:
Inspiration Monday @RedHeadCanDecorate
Time to Sparkle @TheGunnySack 
Project Inspired @Cupcakes & Crinoline 
Tweak It Tuesday @Cozy Little House 
It's Party Time @Three Mango Seeds 
Tutorials & Tips @Homestories A to Z 

Follow on Bloglovin


Hells Kitchen Sign

Have you ever watched the show Hells Kitchen?  Chef Ramsay yells at all the chef wannabe's, turning up the heat on them.

That's me when someone messes with my food on the stove.

So it's fitting that the buffet table at a Halloween party we co-host has a sign letting everyone know where the food comes from. 

Old Barnwood Sign
Sign under black light in dark shed
  We've had these old barn wood signs for 18 years and I paint over them depending on what I need the new sign to say.

Make Old Barnwood Sign

 The boards already have this great crackly finish.

This one got a base of red, some letters from my Cameo Silhouette, and a light coat of white over the top before the vinyl is peeled off.  The white shows off nice under the glow of a strategically placed black light.

Oh and an old plastic top of a pitchfork that was on the bottom of a Halloween bin.  I added a piece of dowel I picked up off the garage floor.

The name of the game at Halloween is make it cost nothing!  I will use any old piece or part of anything for costumes and decorations.

The party is in a shed - it ain't Martha's house for goodness sakes!

What's black and white with E-6000 all over?

Metal Candelabra redone with battery lights

A garage sale candelabra for .25¢.

But lighting taper candles in a shed with hay bales and corn stalks for decorations isn't really very smart.  Burning Down the House is only a song I like to dance too, not something I really want to do.

So while I realize any kitchen in hell is pretty hot, the authenticity of heat from a burning shed isn't what I had in mind.

Tin Molds

To remedy this I took three of the little vintage tin molds I also picked up at a garage sale and glued them on with the E-6000.

Then I plopped in some battery candles for a safe alternative to real flames.

Metal Candelabra Halloween Redo
Yes this is still an unfinished dining room chair.  Shuddup.

The candelabra will make it's way out to the shed and also go on the buffet table.

And get a load of these embroidered flour sack towels......

Flous Sack Towels, Bliss

I. Love. These.

I. LOVE. THESE.  Do you hear me?

They are sooooo darn cute.

Tina from What We Keep was having a fundraiser for two doggies her heart went out too, and when I saw the Bates Motel towels I had to have them. Thank you Tina, I love all of them.

So Bliss, what's really up with all this Hells Kitchen stuff?

Well lets just say it all goes with the costume of a certain devilish chef.  And of course every well dressed devilish chef needs a Hells Kitchen towel to complete their ensemble.

Follow on Bloglovin


Paranormal Portraits

Last year when Tracy at Crows Feet Chic posted her paranormal portraits, I knew I had to make some.  And I did.

Paranormal Pictures for Halloween
Bliss Ranch Haunted Portraits

This year I knew I had to make more.

But this time they won't be in my house on the dresser, they are hanging in the back shed on some old barn doors as decoration for a Halloween party.

The wood is from old barn doors at Albert's farm.  Last week I made a coffee table out of one.

Gallery Wall for Halloween

Wondering what that stump of wood is for?  Hammerschlagen.  It gives the men something to do while they drink beer.

There are up to 5 couples that host this party, so I used pictures mostly from past parties to turn into the haunted ones.  The larger ones were made 24x18 at Staples - engineer prints, all three for under $6.00.

Haunted Portraits

I collected frames from garages sales, and my spending limit was .50¢, but the nicest one is the big one bottom center and it was free.

The one on the bottom left came with a hand painted portrait of a little boy from 1958.  So I just used some paints on him and turned him into a little vampire. 

Haunted Portraits

 This one is so creepy it's not funny, and yes that is another of the hostesses.

Haunted Portraits

Need a tutorial?

Take all the glass out, poke holes in the eyes with a screw driver - all the way out the back of the cardboard or whatever backing came with the frame - push the lights through from the back and hang up.

If you are lucky like I was, your Phillips screwdriver is the perfect size and the lights punch right in and stay in place.

DIY creepy Halloween Portraits,

Halloween Gallery Wall,

In person they are pretty funny.  A few black lights in adjacent areas for ambiance and it's just about ready for a round or two of Hammerschlagen.

The eyes are watching you from these link parties:

Tutorials Tips and Tidbits @StoneGable
Treasure Hunt Thursday @FromMyFrontPorchToYours 
Twirl & take a bow Link Party @ArtisBeauty

Follow on Bloglovin


Junkers Unite! Barnwood Table, Pinboard & Link Party

Allow me to introduce you to some Funky Junk people, some Funky Junk pin boards and my junky barn wood coffee table......

Barn Door Wood Table,

Follow on Bloglovin


Quick set Concrete Pumpkins

Over at Fox Hollow Cottage I spied a guest post from Shayna at The Wood Grain Cottage for some concrete pumpkins, and I knew right away I was gonna make some.  Using quick set concrete was right up my alley since I now have three little stone look walkways made over summer using the stuff.

Quick Set Concrete Pumpkins
Terracotta pumpkin, and thick foam light up pumpkin with his electrical removed

Follow on Bloglovin


Halloween Party Invitations

Toe Tag Halloween Invites

How to make toe tag Halloween invitations, or, I could very easily start this post out  "It was a dark and dreary day.....".  The sun is not shining, the clouds have gathered and are dropping rain on my parade.

Pisses me right off.

I've got things to do outside and not enough time to do them.

Tape from Target, Scrap-booking isle
So instead I decided to finish up invitations for a Halloween party.

I had the black and white part of the invitations printed at Office Depot - .18¢ each one sided and I had two on a page.  Cardstock.  I needed 55 copies.  This party has 5 hosts, everyone invites friends and family.  Office Depot was better than printing all those copies at home, $10 bucks divided by 5, very reasonable.

And my labor is free, I assembled them all.

Office Depot wanted $1.29 a copy for the tag part, considered "color copy" which has seven on a page.  I needed 16 sheets and decided to print those at home on the card stock I already have.

Cheap.  Yes that is me.

I can't take credit for the whole idea of making toe tag invitations, but I did have my own ideas for how I wanted mine to look.

First find some feet and a helper to make the foot model laugh while they are suppose to be holding still, because even though there are feet photos on the web, I didn't want to pirate them.

I needed authentic Bliss Ranch feet for my invitations.

My foot model will remain anonymous, because you know she hadn't washed and smoothed her piggies and was basically mortified to have photos taken of them.

It was the foot models idea to use one of my hammered tin platters to mimic feet on a cold metal gurney.  I added a black blanket to cover her as well as the headboard on my bed, and an old sheet, then I snapped away.

I ended up with this.....

Because two sided printing costs more, we wanted to keep the lettering and photo on one side, and opted to just fold the info into the inside.  The folds all needed to be "scored" in two places, and I did all those suckers myself, but it was worth it because it creates a nice crease for folding.

I used the exacto knife blade-up for scoring, and blade-down for cutting around the big toe.  I wanted the tags to actually hang on the toe, I like the 3-D effect.

Toe Tag Invites

The most tedious part of this whole process was tying the tags on.  I used dental floss, the waxed kind so it was stiff and easy to put through the tag, then a piece of regular tape on the back side to keep the floss on the toe.

They were each folded and sealed with the tape.

Stuffed into envelopes I picked up last spring at a garage sale that was selling office supplies.  250 for a buck, and I sized the invites around being able to fit in those envelopes.

I like how they turned out.  I stamped on a spider, because I like to use ink pads. Really I do - I like the sound of the THUMP onto the paper.

The tags have info on both sides.  Host names, details on the front, and address and phone numbers for questions on the back.

Toe Tag Party Invites

And "Trick or Treat Smell My Feet"
 is just funny.

Treasure Hunt Thursday @FromMyFrontPorchToYours
Halloween Blog Hop @ TheHappieHousie
Wildly Original Party @IGottaCreate 
Halloween Spooktacular Party @MadeInADay
Link Party Palooza @IHeartNaptime
Halloween Project Parade @OhMyCreative

Follow on Bloglovin


Junk in the Shed

At this time of year there is a lot of outdoor chores to do before the snow flies.  And when we decide to have a Halloween party, well that ups the chore ante.

Brawn had me wander with him back to the out-of-sight out-of-mind shed at the edge of our woods to "discuss" the upcoming party and the "junk".

Previously the shed was used to store the boat, lake stuff, lawn furniture, a camper, and the sawmill boards Brawn has on hand for building new things.

2 years ago it was his shed.......

Before I started hauling home every free item I saw.

A bucket at the end of a driveway marked "free", full of dusty bottles and greasy insulators.  I think there were about 8 of each.
It was before people started telling me about free stuff they found.....

Like a roll top desk my son spotted by a dumpster at a business.  First he told me about it, then went and looked.  After he checked it out he called and said he didn't think I'd want it. 

Some stuff is from garage sales like this old headboard.  Five bucks........

I have a buggy seat?  Hey I forgot about it since it went to live in the shed when we cleaned the garage.

A friend brought over the copper tub a couple years ago saying she thought I could do something with it.

Old cabinet doors Brawn hauled home for me before my addiction became serious.

Half a door and an old table top.  

Sewing machine base I was gonna do something with.  The same friend that gave me the copper thing brought two chairs and left this for me too.  

One window or 20..... 

Below the Electric Chair, are two dressers waiting for a redo.

What?  You don't have an electric chair? 

I stuffed a jailbird body and people stuck their head through the black fabric and we took pictures of them at night.

The head model is one of my sons. The one that hates all the old junk around.  I think some of those old belts are now on his little brothers Rock & Roll Dresser as handles.

Not all the junk is IN the shed.

We have piles outside too.

Don't ever tell my husband you want some old wood, because he will get your some.  And don't ever walk on this pile or you'll end up with a rusty nail in your foot.  Then we'd have to cut your foot off and use it as a Halloween prop.

Speaking of rust, there is rusty stuff besides nails around too.

If you came to our house you would never know all this junk is lurking. THANK GOODNESS!!!!  Keeping it out of sight helps our property not look like the Beverly Hillbillies moved out and left us their stuff, and it keeps my addiction on the low down from friends.

Really the back shed is a treasure trove of junk waiting for its moment.  But the moment will have to wait till after October.  For now junk will get hauled out so the shed can be transformed into something with a Halloween atmospfear.  I'll be flying in on a broomstick.

(Hi Dii, hope you are up and around soon.  I need more junk!)

Follow on Bloglovin
Disclosure Policy for Bliss Ranch:
From time to time there might be a written review of services or products on this blog for which Bliss Ranch may or may not have received that service or product for free. Receiving a product or service for free or at a discount will never dictate what is written on this blog or guarantee a favorable review. All opinions here belong to Bliss Ranch and Bliss Ranch alone. Bliss Ranch is not monetarily compensated to write anything on this blog... period! For the complete privacy policy please see the tab at the top of the blog.