Saturday, December 19, 2015

What the Art Teacher Wore #153

 Vintage Dress Love Monday: So when I found this vintage dress for next to nothing at Buffalo Exchange, I gotta admit, I squealed a wee bit. Despite the fact that I look a lil like a Pizza Hut table cloth, it has this darling pearl-bead detail on the bodice that would make any vintage-loving gal weak in the knees. It's truly a summer-y dress but with the weird warm weather we've been having, it seemed perfectly suitable for a 70 degree December day (which is unheard of in these parts, y'all!). dress: vintage; belt: Pin Up Girl Clothing; fishnets and tights: Target; shoes: Clarks

Ahhhhh. Do you hear that? The sound of silence. Not a child stirring in your art room. Not even a mouse...well, unless you're me. And then there might be a mouse or three. I hope this blog post finds you enjoying some well-deserved off time (or at least very near it!). I have managed to spend nearly 75% of the first day of my winter holiday in comfy pajamas mostly due to a cold and slightly due to slacker-ism. I've decided to embrace the slack and (hopefully) cast off the cold. I do hope your break finds you doing the former and not the latter (or is it the other way around? I never could keep those two straight). Regardless! Enjoy yourself, your friends and your family this holiday session. AND these incredibly tacky ensembles. Until next time!
Oh, Tacky Tuesday!: We have a lil Tacky Christmas Sweater Day tradish at my school and for the last coupla years, my kindergarten-teacherin' friend Heather (left) and second grade teacherin' pal Bethany (right) make skirts! This year we each bought a tree skirt at Big Lots for $7 and spent a couple hours one afternoon turning them into lady skirts! What you can't see is that Heather's skirt features Santa! I love that we wore matching candy-cane tights without even consulting each other...great tacky minds, y'all. on me, red dotted shirt: thrifted; dotted sweater: Old Navy, last year; belt: Pin Up Girl Clothing; tights: Amazon; flats: some horribly comfortable things I picked up in New Orleans
 Our snapshot of last year's skirt-making endeavors which got us a shout out on BuzzFeed (I'm actually featured here twice, y'all)! You can see more here
 Weird Santa Wednesday: I made this table cloth into a lady skirt last year after scoring it on ebay. What sold me on it was the delightfully creepy Santa Claus. You can find that DIY here. sweater: vintage, thrifted; tights: not sure, Marshall's or TJMaxx, maybe?
Pajama Thursday: Okay, y'all. My school has hosted many a PJ Day and I've never participated. Mostly because my previous pjs have been horrendous sweat pants and hole-y t-shirts from high school. It's not exactly the look I wanna be flaunting around, ya know? I mean, I do have a reputation to uphold. However, a quick run to Target (along with half the faculty and staff of my school, ahem) I found these lovely Nick and Nora snow globe themed numbers AND panda slippers all for 40% off. How could I resist? Of course to complete the look, I had to go all out, y'all. 
 Like, ALL out. The kids nearly died. They rarely see me in pants, let alone pjs and glasses. I slapped my eye cover on the top of my head along with a scarf. I gotta admit, I was very comfortable all day. 
 And, not surprisingly, totes unproductive. I just wanted to crawl under a table and nap! The temps have now plummeted so wearing this gem at bus duty was a must. Did I mention that I had to go to the bank, the office supply store AND the craft store afterwards? When I waltzed into the bank, you coulda heard a pin drop. I said, "Look, before you say a word, it was Pajama Day at my school. I know this is usually Walmart attire but I promise you, it was for educational reasons." 
Managed to Get a Cold for Christmas Break Friday: Our Friday's before this break are only 2 hour days. They are super fun, full of class parties and a big ole school sing-along. Sadly I felt so under the weather that I worked in the teacher work room all day (with the help of some very sweet assistants) creating what I've dubbed "art teacherin' placemats" for my room. You can view them here. cat headband: Forever21; top: DIY, here; table cloth to skirt: DIY, here; tights: amazon; cat shoes: ModCloth; belt: Pin Up Girl Clothing
And, from my kitten feet and fluffy tabby, we'd like to wish you and your's a Meow-y Christmas! I'm sure to be back before the big day but in case you're not, thank you so much for reading this here blog! Your support means the world to me. 
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Thursday, December 17, 2015

DIY: Vintage Putz Houses, A Light Up Village!

It's the Most Wonderful Time...for Christmas Craft Night, y'all! I seriously look for any ole reason to have a bunch of boozy and crafty buddies over to blow off some steam and make stuff. And, let's be honest, nothing beats Christmas Crafts especially if they are as kitsch-mas-y as Putz Houses! 
At last year's holiday craft night, my art teacherin' buddy Sara mentioned wanted to learn to make Putz houses. My moms-in-law gave me a glorious box of these made in Japan beauties several years ago and they have a place on my pink tree every year. Here's a wee peak: 

They are easily my favorite ornaments as I love the magical notion of wee people celebrating the holidays in their happy village. 
You can occasionally find these bad boys in antique stores for heavily inflated prices. I've also seen them priced all over the place on ebay-land. But, let's face it, it's way more fun to create your own with a buncha buds, don't you think? 
If you've never hosted a craft night, here's how I usually get the ball rolling: message a group of artsy friends and throw a coupla dates at them. Once one is settled, create a Facebook event so folks can keep up with what you'll be creating and what they might need to bring. I also love to have dinner with a theme of some sort. This time I let everyone know that we'd be having Breakfast Dinner! Folks were encouraged to bring scissors and an adult bevvie of their choice. 
Our craft night was on a Friday, shortly after school. It's good to have drinks ready and snacks on hand because that's what peeps really be wanting. I had planned for the menu to have an egg scramble of some sort and pancakes. Of course, it's no fun to do all that cooking alone (especially when cooking is not your forte!) so I had the batter ready and put one buddy on pancake patrol (thank you, Tamara!) and another on egg-cellent egg-making (thank you, Virginia!). Another buddy served out the Bloody Marys (thank you, Ali!) while another mixed up mimosas. It was a delicious group effort that kicked off the night. 
Once the food had filled our stomachs, we cleared the dining room table and set to work. I knew that the first coupla stages of this house making would be a lil labor intensive but once it was done, the real fun of decorating could begin. 
Since I'd announced and shown a coupla photos in the Facebook event what we'd be creating, some folks brought miniature items to accompany there house like small deer and bottle brush trees. 
 And just look at our happy village!
I got so many sweet photos after the night of houses hanging happily on trees that it made my weekend! If you are interested in making your own Putz house, rustle up the following:
I happened to have a stash of gift boxes from my belt-making days for us to use. However, tag or poster board would work just fine. 
 If you do use a gift box, simply cut it open.
And cut off the tab. This tab will become the base of your house. I curve-cut the base just for interest but you could leave it square or cut it with decorative scissors. 
 From there, I cut off one of the box sections for the roof. 
Everyone created a variety of roof shapes and they each turned out so cute! I created mine with a scalloped edge. 
 I then cut the rest of the box apart and used two for the front, back and side of the house. 
 After about five minutes of playing, I came up with this template. 
 You'll need to cut two of these out and fold 1/4" from the side. 

Fold along the front and back of the house. 
Clip at the bottom of the side fold and bend up. Then clip at the crease where the front of the house meets the side and fold both bottom edges upward. 
 Before gluing the house together, start to think about a door and windows. You could use an Exacto to cut these...but I don't trust a bunch of drunks with sharp blades so we just cut them with scissors. 

 For the stained glass, you could use cellophane...or you could go the poor art teacherin' route and simply fold a piece of tape back on itself...
 Tape that in the window from the inside...
 Color it ever-so scribble-scrabbily...
And boom! Stained glass!
Of course the over-achievers went and did all this. People like these don't get asked back to craft night (just kidding, Ginny!).
Now you can start to bring in the corner of the house and start gluing into place. My fave glue is Aleene's Tacky Glue because that stuff sets up fast. Aleene is Tacky and she knows it. My kind of gal. 
Hold long enough for someone to go and refresh your drankie-drink.
 Then glue the sides...
 And lay that glue on thick to add the roof. 
 Don't worry too much about craftsmanship, you'll be painting all over that mess anyway. 
Oh, snap! I forgot to mention, don't forget to hole punch a spot in the back or the bottom to insert a Christmas tree light!
 Then commence painting and decorating, the very best part!
 We had so much fun testing out the house "lights" on the tree!
 Aren't they lovely?
 Oh, a happy home. 

Made with such fun friends. 
 Who obviously cannot take a decent photo, ha!

Happy Crafter-days, y'all!
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