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Wednesday, April 27, 2016

Wacky Wednesday #55—Gum Wrappers

 
I have hundreds of them.
Gum wrappers.


About a year ago I started saving the foil wrappers from my gum habit. I liked their shiny look and I suspected that they could become a dress. And now it’s time to let them shine. When you wear metallic stuff there’s always the chance you’ll end up looking like a giant, foil-wrapped baked potato. But I’m not scared of that possibility. There are worse things in life.


 
Several people asked me how long it took to make this dress. 1 year of collecting. Six hours of sewing and gluing.  

Total cost: less than $3 (zipper on sale, plus hot glue sticks).


I glued the wrappers onto a dress I made from fabric given to me by a friend of a friend (thanks, Rechelle). If you’re wondering why I used blue and white gingham as my base, there is no intended reference to Dorothy’s dress from Wizard of Oz. The fabric was in my stash, it was free, and all of it would be covered by the gum wrappers.

Many of my costume ideas begin when I see something that others might think of as trash, and I say to myself, “That needs to be a costume!” Things most people throw away (gum wrappers) can become something awesome to wear. To me it’s exciting to look at something ordinary in a different way…


 






Today is my 55th Wacky Wednesday post, and it’s the 52nd consecutive Wednesday that I’ve worn a costume I made myself. My first three WWs were not on consecutive weeks but on May 6th last year I started my weekly creations. I’ve done this every week for a year, and it’s been meaningful to me.

This whole thing started quite by accident. A little over a year ago I wore a costume I’d made and it happened to be on a Wednesday. A month later I wore another fun costume, by coincidence also on Wednesday. Those first few times were fun, but I hadn’t planned to do it every Wednesday--until I realized how happy it made me. Before long I began wearing funny things I'd made every Wednesday. Having a platform to show what I make has been wonderful. It’s been a good creative challenge. It’s been fun. It’s brought people laughs--and everyone needs that.

This year has taught me something about finishing projects. In my life I’ve sometimes been a procrastinator, leaving a project unfinished because I felt unsure of how to complete the last 5-10%. But over the last year--because I had a self-imposed deadline each week--I finished costumes, and that alone felt good. Even if the costume wasn’t exactly as I’d envisioned, completing something felt satisfying. I feel proud that I finished so much wearable art in the last year. I’ve loved hearing from friends and strangers that my humor and my creativity entertained them. Making kids laugh or smile each week while in costume has meant a lot to me.

But after today I’m going to take a little break from making costumes every single week. I’ll still make them, but not weekly. I need to recharge. Honestly, I hate the idea of disappointing people who read this blog each week and get a laugh. I still have more WW costume ideas so I’m not stopping—just taking a breath. I plan to keep blogging about parenthood, art, funny moments, and whatever else comes to mind. I have a public art idea that I want to bring to life this spring, and I’ll post photos and stories about that here. To my weekly readers, thank you for reading my blog over the last year. Thanks for giving me feedback in person, or emailing me or posting your comments and letting me know how much you liked my creations. It’s meant more to me than I can say…


Got gum?

www.instagram.com/sarahconleyartist

20 comments:

  1. Congratulations on an entire year of weekly costumes! Wow! You made an amazing dress out of gum wrappers. I especially like the last picture of you. You have a lovely expression.
    Roxanne

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    1. Rox, thanks, momma! Thanks for seeing tips and for always being in my corner...

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  2. You are so beautiful - inside and out! We love seeing your fun, creative, and artistic costumes! Thank you for bringing us smiles every Wednesday for the past year. :) The Bakers

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    1. Trisha, thank you! How sweet. So glad your family got some laughs from my ideas. Your support is so kind...

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  3. Hi Sarah! I have loved each and every one of your WW posts. I, too, love to thrift and recycle/reuse anything I can. I hear you about procrastination - I am the WORST and I always say if it weren't for the last minute, I'd never get anything done. So having the self imposed deadline speaks to me as well...I think I need to try it! I look forward to your posts whenever you have the time ( :
    Hugs, Juliet

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    1. Juliet, thank you. Procrastination is what it is. It could be worse! Thank you for reading and the comments and your friendship...

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  4. Love you Sarah! You are an inspiration! I'll miss your WW posts but glad you are taking time for you and I know you'll continue to create incredible things! Charlotte xox

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    1. Oh Char, thanks! Yep, there will be more to read and see, so stay tuned...

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  5. Congratulations on your year+ of costume blogging. I read your posts for both the costumes and to see how you're doing, so you haven't lost a reader here. xoxo -Mary

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    1. Mary, thank you! I am so glad to be connected to my high school buddy this way. I think I owe you an email...

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  6. Very cute. Love the exploded bubble shot.

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  7. You wouldn't believe how many photos I took of bubble-blowing. In most I looked like a fish, sucking down sea water. Those photos have been relocated.

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  8. I might not reply but I have sure enjoyed reading your blog and seeing all your creations. Thank you for all the smiles you have given me.

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    1. Hi Sam, thank you! You are an inspiration to me--such imagination and creativity flowing out of you. Love your art.

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  9. I LOVE your gum wrapper costume! It has a space costume FEEL to it. Shiny, and metallic. I also love the gum bubble that you blew! I remember having a bubble gum blowing contest for my clients, and was AMAZED at what GIANT bubbles they, blew, and how much fun they had doing it. They amazed themselves! Keep sending your love, and creativity, out to all of us! We love it! Love, Aunt Eileen

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  10. Aunt Eileen, thanks! These ideas just pop into my mind. Fun to bring them to life. xo

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  11. Sarah,

    What a georgeous feat--almost like a mosaic dress! I love your seeing such possibilities in the humble gum wrapper (Sounds like a poem: "Consider the humble gum wrapper, wrapping a sweet surprise, not rapping a harsh reprise...etc."!THANK YOU for wacky Wednesdays. Do enjoy some time to catch your breath, and consider the good things yet to unfold.

    Much love, Betty

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    1. Betty, thank you. So glad you liked this creation and all the strange things I've made in the last year. Humor is something that costs nothing but can be shared with many. XO

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  12. Best recycling project ever! I think of all the outfit I could have made over the years with my gum use... I am a gum addict and have passed it down to my children! Very cute.

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    1. Adri, I have tons of wrappers left over so let me know if you want to craft matching outfits for your family...

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