Fall has definitely fallen. Seasonable weather and colors abound.
Happy Halloween, U.S. peeps! I’m staying warm and dry.
So far I haven’t created any products for specific campaigns or themes (apart from my usual business charitable giving). This year, I wanted to do a test batch and chose October and breast cancer awareness.
There are some gorgeous pinks and reds in my fabric stash. I selected a few to make a small quantity of lavender sachets and mini storage cubes. Some sachets are plain, some have a heart applique in the front and some were inspired by the Tardis; all are limited run and sold singly. A part of the sachets are in darker colors – burgundy red and purple – as a nod towards male breast cancer. I also sewed two unique sets of two mini cubes; the rest of the cubes are limited run and sold singly. Here is a group photo:
They are now available in my Etsy store; more photos can be seen on Flickr. Five percent of the proceeds go to Susan G. Komen. It will be interesting to see how a themed set like this performs compared to my usual selection. At the very least it has been educational to think in terms of a specific collection or purpose.
For Halloween, here are a few arresting, interesting, stunning dark spaces. Halloween decor easily gets tacky, but these tricks / spaces have wider appeal. Enjoy!
Nina had an understated but elegant idea for a table:
Found via Husligheter. (Oh good grief, my brain just went there – “Nana nana nana nana bat fork!” 😀 )
A detail on a desk clad for the fall by Therese:
Black & white & wood in a kitchen:
From an apartment designed by architects at Sawyer | Berson. If I were a fan of dark wood, this would be the tone. 🙂
Open kitchen shelving:
From the home of architects Henrik and Lotta Imberg. Again, via Husligheter.
Who says a dining room hutch can’t hold shoes?
P.S. Three additional links: Nicole Balch (from Making it Lovely) created a fantastic feature on dark walls for Babble. There’s also a great collection of photos of a converted public library and a set of interiors with black & gold at Desire to Inspire. Check them out!
Continuing my Thursday post on Halloween and painted pumpkins with a set of inventive Jack-o-lanterns. Scary faces seem to be the ubiquitous choice for lanterns, so I’m always tickled to see other things carved on them.
Brilliant use of the natural features of the pumpkin:
One of the lanterns at The Great Jack-o-lantern Blaze in New York in 2010:
An interesting geometric arrangement!
Polka dot lantern:
When dots are more to your liking.
A special pick for my sisters! 🙂
Elvish script from the Lord of the Rings by Finest Geekery:
This is a neat take on the glowing lettering on the One Ring!
And the most stunning jack-o-lantern photo I’ve seen in a while by Karen Montgomery:
It looks like a composite, using photos of Jack-o-lanterns, if I had to guess. A very, very neat way of seeing an everyday (holiday) thing from an unexpected angle!
Being new in the U.S., I’m still wrapping my head around some of the holidays. Halloween, for instance. Oh, I know the whats and the whens, I have participated, and I’ve read on the whys. Being a geek, I’m big on reading and research. There’s only so much reading can tell you, though.
For getting to know a culture, there’s nothing quite like everyday life. Although holidays are by definition not part of everyday, they offer an interesting counterpoint to it and may, therefore, shed more light on the mundane.
(Incidentally, I found that this Ask MetaFilter post is really helpful – it’s listing all possible angles, from love to hate, from silly to serious, from puritan settlers to a dentist conspiracy – and told not by researchers but by a range of ordinary folks, which is what interests me.)
Jack-o-lanterns are maybe THE stereotypical Halloween decor. They are quite well known outside the U.S., as is trick-or-treating. When I still lived in Europe, we were largely on the mercy of mainstream media and what bled through their filters. (Blogging wasn’t yet a big thing back then. Blogs existed, but weren’t as common or varied as now.) Both national and international culture segments were chosen and edited by journalists and other professionals, and published at their pace. Whether their interests met yours was completely up to chance. Finding information on topics not covered by the mainstream media outlets took effort.
After moving to the States, 10+ years ago now, I’ve naturally enough discovered a much wider range of facets than the Halloween scene in E.T. (for example) can convey. Nowadays we’re lucky to have blogs. Blogging has made it much easier to discover other cultures, the everyday as well as holidays, in the writers’ own words, with the range of experiences that is human life.
One new and different thing for me was not carving your pumpkin into a lantern, but painting it. The novelty of funny faces and spiders wore off quite quickly, but fortunately those are not the only things people paint on their pumpkins. Below are a few that I especially like.
Alicia Kachmar painted maple leaves on a pumpkin and glittered the edges:
A little twist on traditional Halloween decor. It’s a few years old now, but still a great idea. I’m not a great friend of glitter in general, but this application is nice. Plus, maple leaves are so pretty.
Alisa Burke at Redefine Creativity painted her lacy pumpkins with layers of acrylic and dimensional paint:
I’m seriously impressed at the detail! The laciness reminds me of batik fabrics – or gingerbread house decorations, if you can believe me. I guess I have Christmas in my head already. 🙂
Scandinavian-style stars were decoupaged on this pumpkin:
Country Living Magazine Oct 2011; found via Babble.
Niki and Ali at Papery & Cakery made ombre pumpkins in two color schemes:
Niki and Ali’s pumpkins show that Halloween can be any color, not only black and orange!
And, finally, Sherry Petersik’s pumpkins sport a pantyhose:
Not painted, but very clever, very quick and minimally messy. Non-messy is always a good thing! 🙂
(Please follow the links for more photos and descriptions by the makers themselves.)
Note: I wasn’t paid or perked to mention this; just passing along a good thing.