Busy is the New Happy

Buckle up, Peeps, it’s about to get busy!  Having Thanksgiving so early this year got me in a tizzy about Christmas.  Then I looked at the calendar and it’s all good; procrastination for another ten days or so, and then PANIC!  I have quite a few presents bought, but that’s only the opening salvo.  They have to be wrapped and shipped since my whole family, on both sides, lives several states away.  USPS flat-rate boxes are life savers.  I could save a whole bunch of aggravation and just give everyone a gift card, but that’s only for true emergencies like that impossibly picky person who we all have to buy a present for.  I’m too old to run all over town looking for the “perfect” gift.  Merry Christmas; buy your own damn gift or stop being so picky.

Well, now that that’s off my chest, and this isn’t even a Christmas post.  We’ll probably start up next week, so this is the calm before the storm of bad holiday finds.  We look for Christmas fodder all year long—just for you!

I like these pictures:

I titled this one: R.B.G.’s D.O.G.  I absolutely adore Ruth Bader Ginsburg and her iconic look.  If, she had a dog, I hope she would dress it this way.  In the meantime, I can dream.

Coming out of a thrift store, we noticed this vehicle across the street:

I cannot help it; whenever I see the Weinermobile I have to sing the Oscar Mayer song (I’m so sorry for the earworm) which is very annoying to all around me.  I love seeing the big hot dog driving on the expressway; a very surreal experience.

Then a week or two later, we saw this:

You really have to be a fan to keep a big old stuffed toy around.  It’s sitting on top of a microwave for some scale.  These crazy people thought it was worth $8, and there it sat.  It might make a good dog toy, for a bigger dog than my little guy.

Oh, dear God, why haven’t these been tossed many years ago:

   

We feel bad about making fun of homemade projects, but when things are this bad, all bets are off.  They weren’t very cute to begin with and the paint job isn’t doing them any favors.  That poor little thing with brown hair and burning eyes is absolutely terrifying.  I think she is pissed about how she is dressed and who can blame her?  Also, is there some rule about whenever there are three little girls, they must have blonde, brunette, and Titian hair?  Those little Charmin girl prints, and the Powerpuff Girls leap to mind.  Why not three brunettes?

Whatever these are:

they are horrible and useless!  One of the strawberries, and a banana appear to be divided, but the base is still one piece, so they can’t be bookends.  All those lamp necks are from lamps behind them.  That leaves just big, food-oriented, ceramic thingies.  I can see why they were remaindered from a local retail store.  Ugh!

Speaking of ceramic weirdness, we saw this:

Kathy adores cats, but she gave this a pass.  It kind of looks like Miss Kitty is seeing something unseemly over on the opposite shelf.  Those are some wide-open shocked eyes.  We should have turned her around to spare her some trauma.  I always feel sorry for figurines that live in the bathroom.  Just imagine what they have to put up with!

We have quite a few good things for this post, and this is one of them:

Boy, this would make housekeeping a lot more fun. Thinking about having a drink after getting the bathrooms scrubbed suddenly makes cleaning day just a little better.  Thank you, napkin, for the great idea.  In fact, drinking games would make the most tedious job suddenly rewarding.  I might even enjoy doing my income taxes, or polishing silverware if I drink a G & T at the same time.  Hmmm.

Oh, you relic of the 1980s:

I’m sure someone from Dynasty (1981) would wear this sweater to lunch, especially if the luncheon were on a yacht.  The original kit owner showed restraint and good taste by never breaking that disk out of the package and actually knitting this eyesore.

Speaking of yarn crimes:

We almost bought this to rescue those poor little chickens about to be crushed by that big horrible basket.  To be honest, the flowers aren’t all that bad; you wouldn’t be shocked to see this in your elderly auntie’s house, especially if she can’t see well and likes to crochet.  But, what in the hell are those tiny chickens doing in this mess?  The maker must have decided that the picture just needed something else and threw that flock in there.  Next time, put the chickens down and attach a few more fabric bees until the emptiness leaves your soul.

The rest of the post is mostly nice things; for example:

We like this plate.  It looks like Vincent van Gogh took up ceramics decoration and painted some sunflowers.  It’s so happy and cheerful, but doesn’t cross over to blindingly bright.  It’s a fine line, but this plate is on the right side of it.  If this were in my kitchen, it would make me smile every day.

She is pretty darn cute:

And, that dress is quite something.  She has the most flirtatious look on her face, which isn’t easy to do with a doll.  We both wished she wasn’t so huge, and expensive.  She obviously needs a home, but we stay away from the big girls.  Whoever made her was pretty skilled because there isn’t anything cheap about that dress.  The fabric was scrumptious.  I even like her wig.  She looks like she could have danced the night away in the mid to late 1700s.

Is this a kid’s barnyard set?

When I think of cast iron toys, what comes to mind are banks, vehicles, and play stoves.  I don’t think that I have ever seen anything like this.  It would be quite hard to play with being all iron-y and heavy.  A kid would have lots more fun with a wooden set, or maybe tin lithography, than this immovable object.  On the other hand, it would be nearly indestructible, which is a bonus.  I’m not liking the whiteness of it all.  I hope it had fun and bright paint when kids were playing with it.

Thanks for reading.  It’s best to just take a deep breath and plunge into the holidays.  Be sure to stop by for a laugh or two; it’s medicinal!

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Not Feeling Black Friday!

I’ll start off by reminding folks that we don’t “do” Black Friday.  While we have been known to stand in line for hours for the right estate sale, and to brave crowds at such, we refuse to even set foot out of the house on this particular day.  Never fear, though, we have a generous backlog of photos just waiting to horrify and delight our loyal readers.  Aren’t you glad you are hanging out with us instead of standing in line?  No offense to those who are reading this WHILE standing in line!

I am going to start with this, just to get it out of the way:

Sorry, no warning, I just sprang it on you.  I figured it was like pulling off a Band-Aid, it only hurts for a moment.  OK, maybe this will keep on hurting, but you can always scroll down quickly.  I am going to say that in general this tot looks like butter wouldn’t melt in her mouth, but there is no way I am turning my back on her.  She is poised to slap that mask on her face, and take out those horses or anything else that gets in her way.  There is a Hollywood film in here somewhere, and it is already creeping me out.

We were having a hard time deciding what to make of this:

On the one hand, who doesn’t need more miracles in their life? On the other hand, are you really going to get one from an action figure?  The glow-in-the-dark hands sort of put you in mind of an alien invasion, and while turning water in to wine is one heck of a party trick, that tiny little amphora is not even going to give you a mini buzz.

The back of the box is no less mind-boggling than the front:

Thank goodness this is the Deluxe edition, as I really wouldn’t want to be saddled with that tawdry old standard edition.  I am not sure what you were supposed to do with this whole thing.  I don’t think that your average child is going to get religion from a jug of wine and a plastic figure.  Maybe just some vacation Bible school and call it good.

That last item may have driven us to drink:

Luckily we have just the sign for us.  Although neither of us is much of a beer drinker, we did get a chuckle out of this, and I am pretty sure I know a household or two that thinks  this is really what those drawers are for.

Some things just don’t know when to crawl off and die:

This is an example of that.  This silly jug has been sitting at the thrift store for weeks.  It’s not horrible enough to be funny and not good enough to get taken home, so it just sits there on the shelves and annoys us.  Maybe someone knocked it off this week  We pushed it closer to the edge just to help it along.  This is one hillbilly that needs to go lick his corn somewhere else.  Really, who ever bought this in the first place?  If you really want something to hide some hooch in, make it bigger, or just head to the crisper drawer!

Well, if it’s KNOT “Freddie”, WHO is it?

The name was pretty silly, but in the grand scheme of bad crafts, this barely ticks the meter.  Actually, in the right place, it could even be sort of cute.  The biggest problem with most of these crafts is that the actual execution isn’t nearly as good as the picture on the front.  Luckily, this crafter knew her limits and left it safely in the bag.

While we are looking at packaging, take a gander at this:

Lucky man, getting those warm buns presented to him.  Not those buns, get your mind out of the gutter.  OK, that might be what I really meant, and I don’t know why these strike us as funny.  Guess it’s just that whole ’70s presenting the food with your pearls in place to the man of the house.  She does look like she is pretty proud of those buns, so hopefully it made for a happy home life.  If he had the nerve to say one bad thing about that bread, she probably ripped off the necklace and headed out of the house to go burn her bra with her sister feminists.

We are hoping these were labeled with tongue firmly in cheek:

If any of our loyal readers are avid cockroach racing aficionados, please let us know if this is really a thing.  These were spotted at our local creative reuse center, so who knows what they really are.  We are definitely giving them kudos for imaginative labeling.

Here we have another example of someone sculpting an animal they have never seen before:

I’ve heard squirrels described as rats with better PR before, but I don’t think these even qualify as prairie dogs.  The only giveaway that they are squirrels are the fluffy tails.  Guess we can be eternally grateful that the fountain doesn’t work by them spitting or otherwise expelling bodily fluids in some fashion.  The whole darn thing probably leaks, too.  I am just hoping that is the case, so it will make its way to the dump forthwith.

We kind of have a soft spot for ’50s planters.  Well, we did till we saw this:

Seriously, I am thinking you have to hate someone pretty bad to foist this on them.  That is one creepy cherub/baby.  Maybe the florist mis-ordered these, so every time they had a long distance floral order for a new baby girl they snuck these in hoping they could rid of them to unsuspecting recipients.  This little tot might have a secret just like our opening clown.  In fact they may come from the same school of homicidal maniacs!  I wouldn’t trust either of them.

Here’s hoping your shopping trip was successful, if that is your thing, and if you are lucky enough to spend the day at home relaxing, here’s hoping that is successful, too.

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Thanks-But-No-Thanksgiving

Oh dear, I totally forgot that Thanksgiving is next week here in the U.S.  I got a bunch of pictures ready to upload, but there was a tiny niggle in the back of my mind, so I didn’t actually upload them.  While walking this morning with my neighbor, she asked me what I was doing for Thanksgiving—ding, ding, ding I finally knew what I was supposed to be writing about this week.  You would think that at my age I would know that when I think something is coming up, that means it’s already here!  Of course, being oblivious means that I didn’t check how many Thanksgiving pictures we had accumulated over the year.  Lucky you, there’s only a few.

These are so confusing:

  

I”m pretty sure they are supposed to be Indian corn for decoration, but they kind of look like crazy carrots to me.  Here is what real Indian corn looks like; it’s so beautiful and orderly.  Your first clue that this is not real Indian corn is how random the kernels are.  I think that these were made by pouring dry Orbeez over carrot-shaped thingies covered in glue.  I can see someone thinking, “Hey, I’ve made these and now I can decorate my door for Thanksgiving” never thinking that crazy corn might signal other horrors within to wary visitors.  Plus, you could have just gone to the grocery store, or the local farmer’s market and got some real Indian corn, which by the way will decompose, or be gobbled by squirrels and birds.  Maybe some considerate thrift shopper will buy these and throw them on their next bonfire.  It could be interesting, in a possibly toxic way, to watch them melt.

I think this is some sort of resin container or candle holder:

The expression on the turkey is kind of mindless, and yes I know domestic turkeys don’t usually qualify for avian Mensa.  This guy’s expression reminds me of the rooster from Moana, Heihei.  They both have that hypnotized expression that indicates that the lights are on, but no one’s home.  Maybe you should put the previous Indian corn in front of him.  He might even eat it.

These are kind of hard to see, and for that we are truly grateful:

The plastic bag is not helping.  They are glass turkeys sitting on a nest, covered dishes, ornamented with radioactive dye No. 2.  I guess you could put salt in them, or maybe some mints or nuts.  But, don’t be surprised when no one even touches them.

Why are these even a thing?

Can you see in the upper right corner of the box where it says, “We bounce”?  Of what possible use would bouncy place card holders be?  I think that it’s just mean that they would be hard to read when your hostess knows that it will take at least a gallon of wine to get through dinner with THOSE relatives.  I can just see poor Uncle Johnny swaying in front of a seat trying to read the damn thing.  No, neither Miss Manners nor The Second Hand Roses will allow you to torture your guests during the holidays, no matter how much fun it might sound.

We love turkey platters, usually:

The good ones are usually made by the great pottery/china makers like Johnson Brothers, Spode, Lenox, Noritake, etc.  I’m pretty sure that none of those makers would claim this platter.  The turkey is a little odd-looking, to be sure, but what in the world are bananas and other fruits doing around the rim?  I could see nuts, cranberries, and pumpkins, but bananas?  We’re pretty sure that this piece of ceramic is covered in lead paint, too, but the bananas should have been the clue that this isn’t safe to use.

This trivet made us laugh:

You know how we love to mock the 1970s, and this is a pretty typical example.  The frame is okay, although I don’t know if it’s necessary to paint it orange.  That tile is purely LSD fueled.  Why are the feathers avocado green with accents of white and yellow?  There is something wrong with the head, too.  Is the turkey wearing a red Mexican wrestler’s mask?  Finally, I’m a little disturbed that the pumpkin is the same size as the turkey.  B.H. is bothered by the yellow stem on the orange pumpkin, more than its size.  Good thing that the tile is covered by whatever hot dish comes out of the oven first!

We hope all of our readers in the U.S. have a wonderful Thanksgiving with their loved ones.

 

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Sew What?

If you know us, you know we LOVE a really good estate sale.  What makes a really good estate sale, you ask?  Many times, for us, it is getting to see what a really passionate collector managed to accumulate.  We love someone who is really committed to what they collect, and sometimes an estate sale is the only way that collection comes out of the closet. Heck, we don’t even have to buy much to have a really good time, just seeing what’s there is loads of fun.  BUT, if what they liked and what we like overlap, boy, do we do the happy dance!  Recently, we attended a sale of a lady who apparently REALLY liked sewing things, and I don’t mean just a tiny bit.  Take a look and enjoy with us!

We started in the garage:

And while this was not really a part of the collection, we had to laugh.  Just in case you can’t tell what it is, we did turn it over:

Who wouldn’t “Whistle While They Worked” with a duster like that?

OK, on to the meat of the sale.  This woman was really into sewing machines, and I mean REALLY:

Check out that oddball one in front!  There were many Singers; here is a nice old one in a case:

Weren’t things so much prettier back then?  Of course, you probably didn’t have time to notice as you were pumping away on that treadle!

Maybe this is more your style:

Still a treadle, but have you ever seen one like that?  Don’t miss the butterfly-looking treadle piece.  It was actually shaped like two footprints, but together they made a rather nifty butterfly.  This case had the older wooden cover instead of the machine folding down underneath.

For a really odd-looking beast, take a look at this one:

It was still a treadle, but worked front to back.  I kinda like the big sewing area to hold the fabric.  Here is the tag for this one:

At that price, no one was jumping too fast on it, but then again there were several spool cabinets, and they went so fast it made your head spin at prices in the $400 to $600 range!

If you think full-size machines just take up too much space, there was a Singer Featherweight (sorry, no pix of that one, Google it, they are cute) and plenty of toy ones!  Take a peek:

I really wanted the one with its original box, but was not feeling flush enough to shell out the 90 bucks they wanted for it.  I did succumb to this one in the $60 range:

Dang, it’s cute, isn’t it?  It’s about eight inches tall.  I haven’t had the time to thread it up and see how it sews, but I am sure it was supposed to, and everything seems to be there.  What a toy!  This was only the tip of the iceberg.  We didn’t take an exact count, but I am pretty sure there were over 50 sewing machines in this house!

As if that wasn’t enough, there were all sorts of sewing accouterments:

Including a plethora of pin cushions, needle books, spool cabinets, dozens of pairs of vintage scissors, sewing machine attachments, and much much more!  I picked up a couple of small things, but mostly behaved after plumping for the tiny machine.  I did buy a pretty pair of scissors, this fun 1920’s sewing book, and an old-fashioned scissor sharpener:

I actually was glad to find the sharpener, they really do work, and the scissors are pretty as well as nicely made.  They cut like a dream.

Deb found a few fun things, too:

The collector really liked needle books and had a bunch that I’ve never even seen before.  I think maybe the atomic one is more recent, since it’s 98¢, but the one above it has to be from the 1930–1940 range with the style and car.  Of course, they still had 90% to all of their needles inside.  I’ve got to stop buying these, but I keep finding them, and I really like the graphics.

I have lots of these, too:

The little traveling sewing kits are just so fun.  There is something about miniatures that I find appealing.  The long narrow sewing kit had never been used.  Can you see all the threads that are still woven in their cool original pattern?  The round kit had a cute flower cross-stitched on its lid, and inside had wooden spools, a thimble, scissors, and really old safety pins.  I love it when it’s still mostly intact.

This last thing was for my husband, and cost a whole dollar:

He reads and collects comics, but not really Archie, or ones primarily aimed at teenagers.  I thought he might like this one for the atomic bomb connection to the 1950s.  And, maybe he might identify with the bratty brother in the background.  He did like it, although he has never heard of that title before.

There were some other fun things in the sale, too.  At least she used some of her machines; there were some lovely quilts:

This was an extra darling Sun Bonnet Sue variation.  She also seemed drawn to old-fashioned linens.  There were some very elegant vintage fashions from the late 1800s.  Deb was particularly fond of this apron:

It was pretty unusual, I mean, who makes a corset apron? It was priced at more that she wanted to pay.  In general, this particular company prices things on the high side.  Gosh, we are cheap!  Even at those prices, you have to give in once in a while, and if we were made of money, we would probably do it a whole lot more often.  We also both fell in love with this awesome enameled kitchen table:

How pretty is that?  You would never even need a tablecloth to dress it up!  We enjoyed watching the eventual buyer fall madly in love with it too, so we know it will have a good home.

All in all, we had a blast and were there for a couple of hours.  Of course, part of that was standing in the never-ending line to pay, another drawback for this company, but we always get a chance to chat with some nice people, and see what treasures they found, so it isn’t too onerous.  We just thought that it would be fun to share some really great things this week, but don’t worry, I am sure we will be back to our regular old cranky selves by next time

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Kathy and Deb Can’t Stop Finding Weird Stuff!

You know it’s a good post when there are pictures of bad Seventies linens, crafts, and seashells.  It’s like we’re singing a top ten Second Hand Roses hit.  The good news is that this stuff is at the thrift stores, so even the owners know it isn’t good now.  Was it ever?  That question is still up for debate.

We saw this bust, and something was off:

It took a glance or two for us to notice that someone applied false eyelashes to this otherwise boring young lady.  You know it’s good art when the piece can bat its eyelashes at you!  This is one of those times where you wish people wrote the story of the item on its base.  We’re guessing avant-garde art project, or kids messing with their mom.  I guess it could have been decorating one of those clothing stores that repel women of a certain age; they don’t get us, and we don’t get them!

This is a meme that had been played out well over twenty years ago:

 Even the see-no-evil … trope featuring elephants isn’t all that interesting any more.  Plus, we all know this kind of head in the sand approach to life doesn’t work any more.  Ignoring evil doesn’t make it go away!  You will just go viral standing there with your hands over your eyes.

We advertised craft projects, and we will deliver:

I’m not sure what this was used for.  It was pretty big, more than two feet tall, with ugly gold fringe and a rod at the top with a rope hanging from it.  I don’t see how this could roll up, or really why you would want to do that, so what’s the rope for?  I would hang this over a window that looked out at my nudist neighbor’s bathroom window—that would improve the view.  It might work as a photography backdrop for fashion dolls, if you removed that butt-ugly trim at the bottom.

My question to the maker would be, “Why do you hate cats?”:

It’s gone the route of minimal effort=minimal outcome, and I can embrace that.  Why did they go against their first impulse and try to “fix” it with bead and sequin eyes, and white stitching around the edges?  This was never useful (pretty sure it would melt if introduced to the mildest of heats) and it isn’t decorative either, despite the optimistic hanger at the top.  You could probably slide it into a shoe to keep your foot warm.

This flower craft amused us:

  

If you were trying to decorate for a wedding on a budget, you could do worse than making plastic spoon flowers.  They even used a Cheerios box as the backing.  My only quibble would be spray-painting it a better color.  I might be tempted to use it for a candle holder instead of curled ribbon.  That pink was kind of a lazy fail.

I think we have seen that owl clock somewhere:

Do you suppose that there could be two such shell owls in our town?  I would hate to think that so much bad taste exists in an otherwise admirable place.  The duck is pretty funny, too.  I think that they should form a support group (a shelf-help group?) and collect other bad animal decor to live near them.  If it got too bad, we probably wouldn’t even look that way out of self-preservation and they could live happily together raising each others’ battered self-esteem.  Seems like a plan; I’ll let them know the next time I’m at ARC.

Gosh, I hate to do this to you:

This abomination is a twin bedspread and pillow sham set.  If I knew who brought this in after using it on an innocent and trusting child, I would call CPS.  Those people are inhuman and I’m pretty sure that kid was always complaining about the monsters ON the bed.

We were wondering why anyone would keep this drab piece of pottery:

   

Turns out it was a decanter; the hat comes off.  And not just any old decanter; it was full of Ballantine’s whisky at one point.  The whisky must have been awesome, because they kept this sitting around the house for fifty years.  I have a feeling it might sit at the thrift store for fifty more if they want $24.99 for it.

After all of that, we owe you guys something good:

How about an old oak rocker with beautiful wood and lines.  I’m not sure that the upholstery fabric goes with the style of the rocker, but it doesn’t look too hard to recover.  An even bigger shock was that the price wasn’t insane, and this could be a wonderful and comfortable addition to someone’s nursery or living room.

We wanted to write a post about a cool sewing estate sale we went to a couple of weeks ago.  I just couldn’t get going on it, so Kathy will have to write it next week.  We even took pictures of what we dragged home, so be on the lookout for that post.

Enjoy the fall, y’all; winter is coming!

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The Perfect Holiday

It’s the most wonderful time of the year!  Yes, Halloween season is in full swing at our house, so we are happy campers.  I saw a post the other day that said, “If money can’t buy happiness, explain Halloween decorations.”  That about sums it up.  It’s the perfect holiday; you don’t have to buy presents, cook a big meal, or get sappy cards.  You only need candy, and if you accidentally eat it all, you can always go get more.  Unfortunately, some folks don’t get the holiday, so we have some things that maybe shouldn’t be part of the holiday fun.

We are going to start out slow, but this is your clown warning, so take care as we approach the end of the post.

Overall, this display is pretty cheerful and mostly harmless:

There is a turkey on the 3rd shelf down that looks a bit bewildered, but he will fit right in next month, so no worries.  The worst of the lot is the three-high pumpkin stack.  Let’s take a closer look:

Again, it doesn’t look too bad till you understand that the areas around the mouths and eyes are lit up.  AND they color change.  From pink to green to red to purple.  Nothing says Halloween like a pumpkin with a clashing pink mouth.  Seriously, some plain white lights would have been fine.  Just because you can change colors, doesn’t mean you should.

We were actually pretty thankful that we didn’t see this fellow in action:

We assume he does some sort of dance to “I Ain’t Got No … Body”, or “Short People”, or “Bad to the Bone”, you choose, we don’t know.  I have no idea where they were going with this, unless there was a plastic shortage, so they left off the legs, or they were making fun of little people, which is just mean.  I truly suppose they couldn’t figure out how to make it so he didn’t topple over when he started to dance.  In which case, I sometimes have that problem, too, but I’ll keep my legs, thank you.

While we are being insensitive (sorry in advance):

Words fail me.  I think I will give them points for using a milk jug as a mask, but after that it has all got to end.  I would like to think we have moved beyond that these days, but the ’70s weren’t that long ago, and some folks have no sensitivity at all.  All that being said, if you just look at the picture, it should at least make a little giggle come out, after you are done cringing.

We did like this:

It was cute, and would look darling stacked with iced Halloween sugar cookies.  Best use of candy corn ever.  Paint it on.  It can be decorative without anyone EVER having to eat it.  Again apologies to those poor misguided souls that think that it is an acceptable use of sugar.  If I didn’t have a ton of Halloween serving pieces, this might have come home with me.

On the other hand, I don’t know why you anyone would want this:

For most guys, the hairy ear thing is going to happen soon enough without you pretending to already be there, and most women wouldn’t be caught dead in these.  I bet they are not a real big seller for them.  I shudder to think of the other things they make.  Probably hairy noses, and warts, perhaps some corns for your feet.

We also found this amusing:

We think Linus has been here.  I mean where else is the Great Pumpkin going to put all those gifts that he brings when he rises out of the pumpkin patch.  It’s awfully cute, but seriously, am I missing something here?  Have we started a Halloween stocking tradition and I missed it?  Don’t go messing with my “no gifts” part of Halloween, and ruining my whole philosophy of the holiday.  I gave this a pass too, as I didn’t want anyone to get the idea that something might appear in it.

I have to admit that I am more on the cute side of Halloween than the flat-out gory or scary.  I prefer to get the little kids at my door, and I really don’t want to scar them for life.  Some of the new decorations that jump out at you should be banned on general principles, and this should definitely go away forever:

At least they are not pretending this clown is cute, but if you don’t want to pay for your kid’s psychotherapy, just leave this at the store where you found it.  If you made that thing drop down from the ceiling, everyone who got near it would pass out from fright or have a major coronary.

While we are at it, this is pretty creepy:

Things climbing up the outside of your house are pretty terrifying, and it might be even creepier from the inside, but when they try to make you do this, I draw the line:

Oh, no, no, a thousand times NO.  Emphatically No, did I say NO?  See above for paying for the therapist.  If you weren’t afraid of clowns before, this will put you right over the edge. AND, God forbid you should stumble into the house drunk and get a load of this.  On the other hand, it might make someone swear off the booze forever, but I think it is a bit drastic.

I believe Deb mentioned our editor’s fascination with tiny hats, so we have a couple more entries into that category (now that I have ruined clowns forever for you).  First up:

Seems to me like a tiny tie to go with the tiny hat would have been more fun.  Once you have purchased this, I am not sure what you go as, a rainbow cowboy used car salesman?

This one took me a minute to figure out where I had seen it before:

Of course, it’s Goofy!, well it is goofy, yes, but also Goofy with a capital G.  The rest of the costume might be a big hard to scare up, but at least you have your ears … and your tiny hat.

We want to wish all you little Ghouls and Goblins a Very Merry Halloween!

 

 

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Say Boo and Scary On

We had our first taste of winter (kind of like the Hobbits have first breakfast) last week.  It snowed more than expected and we had sub-20° temperatures.  Now it’s back to fall; today was sunny and in the low 60s.  It was glorious day for raking and cleaning up which feels so satisfactory when you’re all done.  It’s almost reading season and I’m ready.

However, before cracking a book, I need to do the first Halloween post.  I’ve got mostly Halloween costumes and crafts while Kathy will be doing decor and leftovers.

A couple of months ago, we went into Joann’s, as we do, and were confronted with this wall o’ patterns:

There were lots of superhero costumes, video game characters, and princesses.  There are even some cool steampunky looking outfits.  Sort of like Kathy’s Psychodalek costume for the IFDC, which was a bear to make.  Along the same lines, if you asked someone to make the Dr. Strange costume (center, near bottom row), they had better love you a lot!  It looks pretty complicated:

That looks like a nightmare to make; especially the Benedict Cumberbatch version with all the belts and jewelry he wears in addition to the cloak.

Back to the original picture.  I especially appreciated a line of costumes on the right near the top, which appear to be female superheroes, but pin-up versions of them.

All of the previous patterns are better than this pattern set:

No, just no, unless you want to start saving now for the years of therapy your poor little tyke will need.  The history of clowns is unclear.  One school of thought maintains that evil clowns are a counter-culture reaction to sweet Bozo and Ronald McDonald.  Stephen King’s Pennywise, Heath Ledger’s Joker, Krusty the Clown from The Simpsons, and Homey D. Clown from In Living Color are some examples of scary or bad clowns that changed people’s perceptions.  Another school of thought says that clowns have always had two sides.  For every sweet clown, there’s a Punch, the British puppet that hits his partner, Judy, with a stick.  The Telegraph has a more scholarly look at clowns in this article.  I find the fact that there are such wide reactions to clowns, or fools, fascinating.

We saw this at a garage sale this summer:

It’s so ghoulish that we didn’t even remove it from the box to check it out.  I think it would be perfect hanging in a haunted house looking down at something that would scare your pants off.

We’re not quite sure what the point of a mini hat is:

I understand that people dress up like the police for Halloween, or fun, quite often.  How would a mini chapeau be useful for an adult costume?  I guess that if you’re dressing a kid, a tiny hat would be okay, but most kids seem able to wear bigger hats pretty well, and this one is too small for anyone over three feet tall.  We mostly took a picture of it for our editor, who has a thing for “Tiny Hats”.  He even made a tag for the tiny hats that he finds in our posts.

We have a couple of craft finds:

We really liked the Frankenstein flower pot.  It’s all over Pinterest, but this is a pretty nice version.  Maybe they could have painted some hair, but that’s really a tiny quibble.  It would be cute full of candy or nuts.  Usually, Halloween crafts make us run for the hills.  The pumpkin is pretty fun, too.  I hope there is room for a tea light inside.

This is a more usual Halloween craft project:

I think it kind of looks like the actor, Wallace Shawn, from Young Sheldon, My Dinner with Andre, and The Princess Bride.  That’s a very strange expression for a jack o’lantern to have, and let’s not even look at the eyebrows!  Why would you want to make this unless you had a kilo of pumpkin orange yarn and didn’t have the nerve to use it for a vest.

After inflicting clowns and bad crafts on you, let’s end on something fun:

I was at Target and couldn’t leave without looking at the Halloween goodies.  Both the cat and the dogs were amusing.  I was tempted by the corgi, but it was $35 and then I would have to store it.  The dachshund was fun too, but they didn’t have one open, so the corgi won!

Stay tuned next week for the second of our Halloween posts.  We are on the lookout for Halloween goodies all year round because it’s the most wonderful time of the year!

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