Saturday, December 24, 2011

Light Display Overload

Osborne Family Spectacle of Dancing Lights
Originally uploaded by dragonflydesignstudio

We returned this week from a trip to Disneyworld and a chance to view this lighting spectacle. A musical light show plays every 15 minutes. It was amazing.

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Off with her Head!

With that other holiday approaching the quest is on for the gifts with a darker twist. In the mail today was a catalog. A set of Alice in Wonderland catchall dishes caught my eye. The Off with her Head dish is on my wish list.

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Etchpop - Create, Etch, Print, Share!

Fabulous wood block print kit concept that needs to be funded in the next 15 days. The best part is for a donation of only $25 you can get the 4X6 kit if the project is funded. Please watch the video or go here to learn more.

As you may have noticed I am passionate about supporting local artists. A big thanks to everyone who helped the movie and books for the homeless projects. :o )

Sunday, November 13, 2011

Halloween Samhain Irish Barm Brack Fruitcake Recipe

Adding new traditions to the Halloween celebration is something we try to do every year. There are so many old fashioned games, recipes, and craft projects to try. The great nephew is old enough now that he likes to bake with grandma and grandpa. For Halloween 2012 we plan to invite the niece and her son to bake a Barm Brack Fruitcake. Then serve it to family with hot cider on Halloween. Found the entire kit here.

Saturday, November 12, 2011

The Day of the Dead: A Pictorial Archive of Dia de Los Muertos

Our local used book store downtown is kind of hit or miss for the more unique books. I was delighted to find a used copy of this book. The clip art CD was still enclosed. This was back in September and now I find myself working on a project that will use images from the book on fabric. The best place to flip through the images is at but I have found it for less so do shop around. I own many clip art books of skeletal images. This one has a few images that were completely new to me.

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Mourning Tea

Mourning Traditions Tea
Originally uploaded by dragonflydesignstudio

The culmination of the mourning exhibit was our 11 am and 2 pm mourning traditions tea on the 5th. This shot shows the dining room and the back parlor. There was seating in the front parlor as well. 28 could be seated in the 3 rooms. Both teas had sold out with a waiting list.

It was a bit chaotic getting set up and ready for the first tea but things ran smoother by the second seating. Marge Harding was the speaker for this event. She is fabulous and her collection of mourning items is just amazing. She starts out in character as a widow who has come to Deepwood to drape the house for the owner who is in seclusion. She explains many of the traditions that go hand in hand with death and grieving in the 1800s. My favorite part is when she describes coffins with bells in case someone was buried alive they can ring the bell and literally be saved by the bell. Audiences love that bit.

While Marge was taking questions and passing around some of her collection the 3 course tea was being served. New caterer that I think is a keeper. At the end of the tea guests were escorted upstairs to view the exhibit. After the first tea the staff reset things and I got to eat some of the good food. The wild mushroom tartlet and the death by chocolate cupcake were so tasty.

It was a long day and so worth it. Guests enjoyed themselves and I had the bonus of talking with an old friend. Made a new friend or two as well.


Decoding Cemetery Signs and Symbols
Originally uploaded by dragonflydesignstudio

As part of the mourning exhibit Deepwood hosted a lecture on Cemetery Symbology by Kuri Gill. Looking at images of gravestones, many of them local, is always fascinating to me. The article that ran in the local paper on the event can be found here.

Sunday, November 6, 2011

Catching up

Story Telling in the Solarium
Originally uploaded by dragonflydesignstudio

So many things that have kept me busy since Halloween. Halloween day was the children's party at Deepwood. Food, games, crafts, music, and face painting. The carriage house, solarium, and the tent covered tennis court were used for this event. I was parking lot witch making sure once the lot filled that families found somewhere to park.

It was a lot of fun and the parents got in to the spirit of things. Many families were all in costume.

The day after Halloween was of course the post Halloween sales. Scored one of the big glow in the dark skeletons at Target. Let's face it I always spend more than I planned at Target on the 1st. Goodwill stores mark the Halloween goodies down too. Found a kids fairy costume that I stripped the fiber optic light system out of for $4. Bought some old hats at a $1 each to cut up for new period hat bases.

It was a good Halloween and the yard stuff was finally brought in today.

Monday, October 31, 2011

What to wear?

Crepe Paper Dress with Jack-O-Lanterns
Originally uploaded by dragonflydesignstudio

Its going to be mid 50s with 20% chance of rain outside from 3-5 today. Decided that is a little chilly for some of my "pretty" costumes. 300+ kids ages 4-8 coming to the museum today and most likely I will have parking lot duty. A well dressed pirate might be the way to go. Add a wig for extra warmth. With tights my Steampunk seamstress might work as well. .

Happy Halloween!

Ghosts in a row
Originally uploaded by dragonflydesignstudio

Sunday, October 30, 2011

The Hags of Hallow-even

Child Life Magazine 1929
Originally uploaded by dragonflydesignstudio

Almost here....

Monday I get to be the parking lot guide that funnels hundreds of kids to the party at the museum. We need to do something about dinner and then its a toss up between going to listen to scary stories at the coffee house or staying home. The DVR has been filling up with Halloween shows I need to watch and a marathon with hot cider sounds so good.

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Gourds a plenty

Corner of Front Porch
Originally uploaded by dragonflydesignstudio

Late to the party this year for decorating. The seasonal display of squash stays up through Thanksgiving. Love the surface texture and plan to save the seeds. Our patch was a failure this year lost to powdery mildew. Going to see if we can hire a tractor to break up the heavy red soil and add amendments. Researching and shopping for mildew resistant seeds in case we have a damp spring in to summer again.

Saturday, October 22, 2011

Off to the pumpkin patch

Setniker Farms Pumpkin Patch
Originally uploaded by dragonflydesignstudio

Very late this year to pick my beauties. Some were still on the vine. Stunning weather today so a few more decorations made it outside. Still arranging my swag from today on straw bales. My SIL's porch got a drive by gourding today too!

Friday, October 21, 2011

City Flowers Halloween Displays Bellevue WA

This is a 7 minute walk through of the smallest flower shop with the most amazing Halloween displays. Life size figures. A giant paper mache tree. It was me oooohing and awwwing for a solid 5 minutes. The flower shop was in the same building as the hotel for Steamcon. The owner spent the weekend rearranging the shop since Steampunk fans were buying up his Halloween displays.

Skeletal Hands

From grandinroad I bought the Set of Two Wall-mount Halloween Skeleton Hands. They looked like a good buy at $19 and they are very nice heavy hands. Right now they are sitting base down on my mantel holding a sphere. They will eventually become hat holders. The only down side is that one hand has to face up and one down based on the hanging method. Might need to drill a new space on the back since I'd like both facing palm up.

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Steamcon 3 or how I spent the weekend!

Originally uploaded by Hanpa_etc

Sunday we went as Bathing Beauties with our giant Toads. One girl said I thought you looked so cute in your outfits then I saw the toads. Then I thought you guys looked creepy! Thanked her profusely for the compliment.

Saturday, October 8, 2011

The Vintage Halloween Store

I need my Martha Halloween fix every year. This year I ordered from The Vintage Halloween Store. Yes, you can buy Martha at several retail outlets now but I support the small independent shop owner first.
My favorite purchase is the elegant witch ribbon:
The shop features unique handmade items as well. My next purchase will be the Bewitching Witches Dance Coin Purse.
The owner of this shop is a delightful gal happy to answer questions. Shipping is fast and items are packed with care. Her love of Halloween is also evident with her Halloween Blog. Great reporting on the now skyrocketing prices for vintage Halloween collectibles.

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Spooky Hot Chocolate

Vile Villains Hot Chocolate
Originally uploaded by dragonflydesignstudio

Long time no see. I was down for 2 weeks with a nasty head and chest cold and now its October. Walking through Walgreens yesterday I noticed a black display in the food section. Adorable packets of hot chocolate with great images. 99 cents. Bought this set for the nephew. His first term at college and I need to get a Halloween care package out asap.

Thursday, September 22, 2011

Please pretty please help this film project

First I love as a concept to help get projects off the ground. Second I think these folks are doing a good thing and if you think so to please think about helping back this film. If you are local there are some nice perks for making a donation if the project is funded.

Saturday, September 17, 2011

West Elm

A big thanks to Lisa for pointing me to a new shop. West Elm has a small but well chosen Halloween section. The skeleton paper cones are my favorite. I have been remiss in sharing some interesting finds as my phone is refusing to upload images. Need to sort that out soon.

Monday, September 5, 2011

Mourning Exhibit

Deepwood Victorian Mourning Exhibit
Originally uploaded by dragonflydesignstudio

The set up of this little project has been taking up some of my valuable Halloween and Steamcon preparation time. 1894 Queen Anne Victorian mansion Historic Deepwood Estate. Many of the items are from my personal collection. Exhibit runs until November 5th. Two lectures are part of the exhibit. One on decoding cemetery symbols. The second is a high tea featuring a lecture on Victorian mourning customs.

Saturday, September 3, 2011

Halloween at Khol's

The skull and crossbones round placemat might be part of my new table design. Long rectangular runner with round placemats for something different.

Thursday, August 25, 2011

Stylishly Bleak

Better Homes and Gardens Halloween Tricks and Treats is on the news stand. Joann Fabric has magazines 10% off so I picked up my Halloween craft magazines tonight while scoping out all the new Halloween goodies. My store is really slow to get things out so its wasn't all out yet.
Images from the magazines article Stylishly Bleak. A five page spread using black, white, and newsprint. Alice in Wonderland fans will love a beautifully photographed Mad Tea Party. More images from the Bleak collection at the BHG site.

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Halloween at Costco

Small assortment of goodies. I will not post images for the spider phobic of the remote control zooms along spider!

Sunday, August 14, 2011

Ravenshead Manor collection at Michaels

Elegant looking line in silver, black, and purple.
My fear is the skulls on pedestals will sell out quickly so I may need to make a return trip to Michaels this week.

Saturday, August 13, 2011

Halloween at Lillian Vernon

Love the practicality of the spooky skull stair treads. We really could have used them at our last house for a little extra traction on the front steps. New items started popping up on this site last week.

Sunday, August 7, 2011

Halloween at Horchow

So far I'm not impressed by this years selections. I was hoping for more dramatic candle holders but its a start.

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Pottery Barn Kids

Halloween is now up at Pottery Barn Kids. There is a matching light string to go with the cat head stakes. Have a back log of stuff to share and finally some time to do it.

Bath and Body Works Halloween Goodies

Thanks to Halloween Addict for the heads up about the ultra cute Halloween products from Bath and Body Works. Spooky hand sanitizer bottles make me happy!

Wiggly body parts

Is it wrong that I want to make a hat with a wiggly hand?

Tuesday, July 12, 2011


Baby Pumpkin!
Originally uploaded by dragonflydesignstudio

Finally some little pumpkins are forming on the store bought plants. My pumpkins started from seed need a little more time. We want to have a pumpkin picking party in October. The cucumbers have been growing crazy fast.

Friday, July 8, 2011

Halloween JoAnn Fabric

Our JoAnn fabric moved to a new location. Bigger store with more craft items. Took a look through the new halloween fabric and found some delightful images.

Bold graphics with a great witch.

Beautiful silver spider print.

My favorite is obviously the old fashioned print. The camera phone didn't do this one justice it is covered in a fine orange glitter.
All $9.99 a yard but there are 50% off one yard coupons in the mailer right now.

Monday, July 4, 2011

Happy 4th of July

4th of July Party 1935
Originally uploaded by dragonflydesignstudio

Our new neighborhood was surrounded by fireworks last night. We brought chairs out to the front driveway and watched the show. The pumpkins are loving the warm weather. The carefully tended seedlings are now thriving plants. A sneaky cucumber and a yellow squash somehow made it in to the pumpkin patch. Hey...we celebrate diversity! Have a safe and fabulous 4th!

Friday, June 24, 2011

Batman Pumpkins- the update

Some of you may remember that I purchased the seeds last year but we moved and didn't have time to plant at the new place. Sewed the seeds directly last month and they did sprout. Waiting until they get a little bigger before thinning out the extras. Search for Batman Pumpkins seeds to find folks who sell them. Fingers crossed we will have some orange and black pumpkins!

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Keep an eye out for.....

An artists at Faerieworlds had 75 pieces of art stolen including the pieces below. Go here to see images of more stolen pieces. This made me heartsick to hear of such a horrible act a local festival. Not sure they will try to re-sell them in Oregon but its worth keeping an eye out.

Thursday, June 16, 2011

The moon was full

Halloween Moon
Originally uploaded by windsand34

We took a walk out in a city park that used to be orchards tonight. My hope was we might see some bats swooping in and out of the tree line but no such luck.

Thursday, June 9, 2011

Love the socks!

Happy Bench Monday - Halloween Decorating Edition
Originally uploaded by RiaPereira ~

What I love about flickr is finding friends or their friends and their favorites list. There are enough of us Halloween loving folk that some days my friends favorites list can keep me entertained for a good hour during my morning cup of tea.

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Recently I ordered several test swatches from for a project to be worn at Steamcon this year. Highly recommend ordering a swatch booklet to get a feel for the different fabrics. The best part is several designers have Halloween fabrics ready to print like this one.

Plans and Radio Show

Taking photos of the faux pumpkins that haven't been carved. Picking them up at post Halloween sales, Goodwill, and garage sales. Ge...