This weekend I spent a couple of hours making up a couple of trick-or-treat bags for my two youngest daughters. These festive little bags are sized smaller than the average grocery tote bag and should make it easier for younger kids to carry their Halloween candy home–easier for sure than those bulky plastic pumpkins, or a bigger tote that they may be tempted to drag after awhile. After Halloween is over, they can be used for library books, carrying snacks and a water bottle to the park, or whatever else a young, busy person might need a small tote bag for. Read on for the fast and easy project instructions below!
Apologies for not posting this last week… but just in time for trick or treating we announced our latest design contest, which spawned ten of the creepy (cutie) crawliest fabrics you've ever seen. Our winner is one of Spoonflower's all-time champs, Tamara Serrao, also known as Kayajoy.
The final votes were:
1. 454 votes for Creepy Cocktail Hour by kayajoy
2. 302 votes for SpiderSquish by caitlinrose
3. 287 votes for Skull Raven Flower Damask green by mariafaithgarcia
4. 265 votes for Slimy Monsters by nicoletamarin
5. 246 votes for Bugs under the Spotlight by sketchcreative
6. 245 votes for Creepy crawly party by cjldesigns
7. 243 votes for Crawling Flying Creepies by jennartdesigns
8. 239 votes for Vintage Creepies (with novelty names) by lusyspoon
9. 223 votes for Candy Corn Crawlers by ilikemeat
10. 221 votes for Skull and flower. by panova
These puppets would be fun Halloween party favors! There's a craft stick inside the skirt to make puppeteering easy for little hands. Older kids might enjoy adding the extra hand controls shown in the video below. Best of all, either version makes up in about an hour.
I designed my puppet faces using a paint program on my computer and printed them on Spoonflower linen-cotton canvas. You're welcome to download my file, or if you have artistically-inclined little ones, they can draw their own puppet faces to print on fabric! My sample puppets have 1 5/8" diameter faces. You could certainly make them bigger if you like.
- 1 test swatch of linen-cotton canvas for puppet faces
- 2 fat quarters of Kona® Cotton for puppet dresses
- (I'm using Fiesta de los Muertos by Ljonte and Spidery Web in zombie green by Voodoorabbit. You can get about three puppet dresses from a fat quarter.)
- Ric Rac, about 1 yard (optional)
- Stiffened felt scrap for head (I'm using Friendly Felt)
- Jumbo craft stick, 1 per puppet
- Hot glue gun or white craft glue
- Eyelash yarn, about 3 yards
- Sewing machine
- Hand-sewing needle and upholstery thread
- Scrap of acrylic or wool felt for hands
- 2 thin bamboo skewers (per puppet, optional)
- Black wide-tip magic marker (optional)
- Downloadable pattern for puppet faces (optional)
- All seam allowances in this project are ¼".
A note on glues: I like a low-temp hot glue gun for all of the steps in this project – it bonds quickly and speeds up the process. But, if you're making this project with kids, of you aren't familiar with using hot glue, you might want to use craft glue instead. You'll need to allow some dry time here and there, but it'll save those little fingers from being burned!
Make the Puppet Dress:
1. Print the downloadable dress pattern and cut out four pieces of fabric: the puppet dress back, its center front, and two side front pieces.
3. Now, put the front and back together with right sides facing, and sew the shoulder seams.
Leave this seam unsewn between the two seams on the dress front, as shown below. This opening will be the neck opening of the puppet dress.
Take a small running stitch around the entire neckline, ending up back at the center back. Leave tails of thread hanging at the both ends of this seam. We'll use this thread when we assemble the puppet.
This video will walk you through making the puppet head and hands, and dressing it up. You'll also learn to add stick controls to your puppet's hands if you want to do some more complex puppeteering.
About Our Guest Blogger
Diane Gilleland blogs, podcasts, publishes, teaches, and makes videos about all things crafty over at CraftyPod.com. When she's not doing those things, she's doing whatever her cat tells her to do. And what's wrong with that?
our seasonal contest themes, this week we're asking you to vote for
your favorite creepy crawly fabric designs. Most are more cuddly than
creepy, but there's still plenty of great material here for Halloween
The participating designers this week are:
1. A Bug's
(After)Life by violet's_pet_spider
2. A Spider
In Disguise by holladay
3. A Sting in
the Tail – The Scorpion Creeps Across the Night Sky by inscribed_here
4. AA Allens
Ugly Buglies by candyjoyce
Calligram by blue_jacaranda
7. ants by tat1
10. arise by
We had high hopes for our zombie plush toy-themed contest and, true to form, the Spoonflower community did not disappoint. The winner — whose last victory came in the notably less ghoulish zig-zag cheater quilt contesta few weeks ago — is Australian designer Julie Lynch. But any of the top ten would make excellent trick-or-treating companions.
The final votes:
1. 421 votes for My little zombie dolly (with her spooky friends on 1 yard panel) by cjldesigns
2. 411 votes for ZOMBIE MOMMY needs her coffee by bzbdesigner
3. 387 votes for Zombie Skelly Panda and Casual Green Ghoul ~ Reversible Doll by retrorudolphs
4. 375 votes for Zombie Monkey Plush Doll by staceyjean
5. 359 votes for Very Voodoo Zombie Doll by glanoramay
6. 322 votes for Mister Zombie by bora
7. 314 votes for Mr. 9to5 Zombie Plush Toy by Patty Rybolt Designs! by pattyryboltdesigns
8. 285 votes for Halloweeny plushies by amel24
9. 277 votes for zombiecorn by deb-o-rama
10. 260 votes for Zombie Cut and Sew Doll by jenniferfranklin
I had the odd experience a few days ago of trying to eat my breakfast while casting my votes in this week's zombie plushie contest. I don't think of myself as very squeamish, but that particular multi-tasking combo put me off my toast. Consider yourself warned then that zombie dolls may not be for those with delicate sensibilities, or those with breakfasts to finish!
If you are in possession of a strong stomach — or you just need a little Halloween decor to spruce up your desk at work or your sofa at home — then enter this week's drawing for your choice of the top ten zombie plushie patterns! As always, to enter one of our weekly drawings we'll just need your comment below or on the corresponding Facebook post, and please do include your Spoonflower screen name or some other means of finding you in case you're our winner. We'll choose 3 winners this week, so your chances are better than usual! Entries close next Tuesday, 10/16 and we'll announce a winner on 10/17. Good luck, zombie fans!
Last week, we gave away a copy of a beautiful book all about the link between color and commerce, Regina Lee Blaszczyk's The Color Revolution. The winner was UK-based Emma Blight. Congrats, Emma!
Halloween is one of our favorite Spoonflower holidays, and — as regular voters know — plush toy patterns are one of our favorite contest challenges. So this week it gives us special pleasure to bring together softies and zombies for a zombie plush toy contest. Vote. Vote for your lives.
The participants this week are:
1. Abe Lincoln as the Zombie and
Vampire Killer by vo_aka_virginiao
tattooed zombie little boy by fantazya
3. Attack of
the Zombie by tailorjane
Zombie Doll by onestitchdesigns
Appetit my Love by paragonstudios
Zombie Shark (cut & sew) by leighr
Cute by saartje
zombie by sef
but yet sweet zombie doll by katarina
SammyK's Mariposa Magnifico has dominated arch rival Lucha libre mask of all time by fantazya, and two dozen or so other designs, to take the prize in our Lucha Libre Mask Pattern contest. But in a surprise twist, the ferocious SammyK has tagged another competitor — seven-and-a-half-year-old artist Eislinn, whose terrific Lucha Libre masks won the hearts of many audience members — and donated her $100 Spoondollar prize to her. So congratulations to the team of Samarra and Eislinn! On that note, some people think that because we're geeks who think about fabric all day we're some kind of pushovers. Well, I say think again.
Scoring from the judges:
1. 553 Mariposa Magnifico by sammyk
2. 378 Lucha libre mask of all time by fantazya
3. 361 Corazon del Fuego by jenr8
4. 331 The Prettiest Little Girly Wrestling Mask by kayajoy
5. 303 Sexy lucha libre by wantit
6. 300 Lucha Libre kids mask by verycherry
7. 253 El Capta'n Labotomy by whimzwhirled
8. 241 TIGERLunchLibre2011 by nikky
9. 239 El Fuego Furioso! by fabgirl42
10. 230 Meowing Owl by purplegoat
The winner of our contest to design patterns for Jack O 'Lantern-themed plushie toys and pillows is longtime Spoonflower member, but first-time winner, Michelle Cavigliano, an illustrator from Brooklyn, New York. Her terrific Cutie-Cat Pumpkin pillow pattern won the most votes this time around — congratulations, Michelle! We actually managed to sew nine of the top ten in time for our weekly missive, so be sure to check the photos on our Facebook page. It's starting to be the time of year when you can't resist the urge to curl up with a nice, soft gourd, so you're fortunate that all of the top ten patterns are now available for sale!
The voting results were:
1. 739 votes for Cutie-Cat Pumpkin Pillows by my_zoetrope
2. 694 votes for Trick Or Treat Candy Sorter Plushie by sammyk
3. 664 votes for Jack o' lantern and his best friends by bora
4. 637 votes for Dress up your Jack o'lantern by verycherry
5. 601 votes for Pumpkin Skellie (Click to see sewn sample) by happysewlucky
6. 547 votes for Creepy Pillow by purplegoat
7. 481 votes for Happy Plush-o-ween! by jennartdesigns
8. 473 votes for pumpkinbanner by suziwollman
9. 444 votes for Quilter's Jack-O-Lantern by mrshervi
10. 388 votes for Jack'o'Lantern plushie hat-mask kit (with treat bag) by majo_bv
Designers this week were asked to work on a pattern for sewing a jack o'lantern-themed plushie (toy, pillow, etc.). The field of entries is a bit smaller this week than in recent contests, making for relatively quick voting, which is good because some of these patterns warrant a close look to appreciate the detail that went into them. There are some outstanding holiday craft projects, a few of which I hope we'll have time to sew up for you before the email next Thursday.
Thanks to this week's intrepid designers:
1. "Box" Pumpkin! – Store your sweets inside it! by shirayukin
2. black_cat_pattern by dalec
3. Blocky Pumpkin by terridee
4. Cinderella Leaving the Pumpkin Patch: Pillowcase by pond_ripple
5. Cinderella's Carriage Pumpkin Plushie by bargello_stripes
6. Creepy Pillow by purplegoat
7. Cutie-Cat Pumpkin Pillows by my_zoetrope
8. Decorate your pumpkin kit by haleystudio
9. Dress up your Jack o'lantern by verycherry
10. Ferocious Man-Eating Pumpkin by yourfriendamy