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Wednesday, May 31, 2017

Wacky Wednesday #92—Watermelon

Watermelon means summer is almost here. Last week I wore a sandcastle hat—which also had a summery vibe. Are you seeing a theme, here? Summer: I’m literally counting the days ‘til you begin.

The idea of a watermelon outfit has been simmering in the back of my mind for ages, but I wanted to become a watermelon in the season I associate with it: summer.

To make my dress, I cut some white fabric I already had into an A-line dress so that the shape would be somewhat triangular, like a piece of watermelon. I bought some red dye for $3, and dyed the dress overnight. (It turned out closer to pink than red, but as you know, some watermelons are pink so I’m not sweating it.) I used green fabric from my stash for the rind. The earrings are made from paper, and the hat is made from cardboard, hot glue and paint. This outfit did not cost much cash but it delivers a big dose of fun for me. I hope you think so, too.

Red and pink are my favorite colors—so this watermelon-colored dress makes me happy. Wearing something playful brings a lot of fun, too, and I’m a firm believer that grownups need just as much silly, laughing, happy fun time as kids do. How can you not be in a good mood when you are dressed like a watermelon?
Of course, watermelon is available in the seedless variety, and I prefer it. But the polka dot-like seed pattern is such a recognizable feature of watermelons, so my dress has seeds.

This will be my last WW post until fall, as I’m taking the summer to hang with my kiddos and do other kinds of art projects. But I may blog about other things. Who knows? Either way, I’m ready for a break from schedules this summer.

Whatever this season means to you—watermelon, sandcastles, beaches, kites, picnics—whatever is good for your soul--enjoy the summer…

Wednesday, May 24, 2017

Wacky Wednesday #91—Sandcastle

Sandcastles…Creative fun. Breezy days at the beach. Yep, it’s almost summer, folks.

A few months ago I found some materials that instantly reminded me of sandcastle shapes. They were cardboard packing materials, and their light brown color and bumpy texture looked exactly like sand to me. So I saved them until this week, and I made them into a sandcastle hat.


I’m wearing my sandcastle today, and mentally, I’m ready for summer. As a parent, I find the school year quite intense. My kids are still at the age when they need help with homework and projects so the school year feels like a nine month marathon. Summer, I need you. I know the kids will fight, and I know the heat will get to me, but I’m still ready for a break from school. My sandcastle and I are welcoming summer today.

Parts of this outfit were taken from last summer’s ocean costume, but I believe that if you create a hat you’ve never made before, this qualifies as a brand new Wacky Wednesday theme. I altered and reused the shell necklace I made last summer, and used some of the leftover shells for my hat. The hat is made from the cardboard shapes, hot glue, origami paper and a little bit of felt—things I already had.

My earrings are intended to look like starfish, and they are made from a piece of sandpaper I had. (The sandpaper wasn’t new, but I think that the slightly worn areas give the starfish more interest…)

Have a happy, rejuvenating summer…


Wednesday, May 10, 2017

Wacky Wednesday #90—Crayons

Yesterday I baked crayons. Well, technically I melted them in the oven. But why split hairs?
Let’s back up a few weeks. At our house I can never find a pencil but we have hundreds of broken crayons in a giant box. Unlike permanent markers, crayons don’t wear out. So after they break, I keep them, thinking there’s still tons of life left in them. As an artist, it’s hard for me to throw out art supplies that could be used again, so the collection of broken crayons grows and grows. (Again, I am not a hoarder. I’m a practical saver of art supplies.)
The crayon fragments were screaming to become Wacky Wednesday accessories. So I used some fragments to decorate a crown, necklace and sunglasses. Other pieces I melted to create larger, usable upcycled crayons.

Until this week I’d never melted old crayons to make larger ones. I remember someone doing  this when I was in grade school. Why I can remember this--and not remember where I put the pencils—is evidence of how mysterious our brains are…

So, let’s review. This genius plan of mine has several bonuses:

1)      I’m creating another Wacky Wednesday costume I haven’t made before.

2)      I’m using up old, tiny crayons and therefore reducing the clutter (ever, ever so slightly).

3)      I’m giving old, broken crayons a new purpose.

Once I’d melted the old crayons I experimented with making art. I dripped the liquid wax onto paper, before it cooled, and I also colored with the new, giant crayons. It’s great fun.

This week’s crayon accessories are well-timed, if I do say so myself. I’d been planning this crayon theme for weeks, and by pure coincidence, crayons were in the news a few days ago. Crayola is introducing a new crayon color, based on a new shade of blue discovered by Mas Subramanian, a chemist at Oregon State University. He discovered the new pigment in 2009--the first new blue pigment to be discovered in 200 years.

The new blue has not yet been named, and Crayola is holding a contest to name the new shade. If you’re interested, check their website. Contest ends on June 2.

I’m taking next week off from blogging, but I’ll see you all again in two weeks.

The crayons and I wish you a colorful, creative day.
Now--anybody have a pencil I can borrow?


Wednesday, May 3, 2017

Wacky Wednesday #89—Maypole

May Day was two days ago, and I’m wearing a maypole today. But let’s not argue about dates, okay? My wackiness is a Wednesday thing and if May first has the audacity to arrive on a Monday, there’s only so much I can do.

Maypoles are not something we see all that often in Southern California. Apparently there are a few places in America where maypoles are decorated each spring, and some European countries set them up each May. In San Diego? Not so much.

Some people believe that the maypole has a pagan connection. There’s debate about why people decorate them. My costume has no pagan agenda or political message or anything like that. It’s just about being colorful and making something I’ve never made before.

For months now I’ve been thinking about how to make a maypole costume. I have a piece of bamboo for my pole, and six bright shades of ribbon. Apparently, I also need a handful of leprechauns or fairies to help me make one, since I have only two hands and there are many ribbons that need to be woven under and over one another simultaneously. Since all the leprechauns and fairies I know are at real maypole celebrations this week, I’ll have to do it myself. But as you may have noticed, I like a good challenge.

(Update: I tried twice to wrap the ribbons around the pole, under and over, with an alternating clockwise and counter-clockwise pattern. After two tries, my brain was in knots and the ribbons were not woven. So I did some ribbon arranging instead and I’m calling it good enough.)

And if my maypole falls down later, we’ll just start a limbo contest instead…