Halloween is such a fun time in our house. It’s the start of decorating season (you know, the constant swap out of decor for Halloween, Thanksgiving and Christmas?), sports kick into high gear for now two of my kiddos, and the yearly costume challenge begins.
The costume challenge goes something like this “Mom, could you make me look like this?” while one or more of my children point to a ridiculously expensive (and, mind you, very ornate!) costume in a magazine, I instantly start thinking of the man hours and supplies I’ll need to pull it off, and I try my hardest NOT to just say “Go get my wallet…I’ll just buy it for you.”
Every year I try to make one from scratch.
(Just one. Two would be hard. Three would be insane. So it’s just one. The others get “half homemade”…sometimes even 75%…and that seems to work. And yes, it’s usually my daughter’s because I know she’ll wear it for dress up straight on through to summer!)
And every year they challenge me more. But I do love it. These are the costumes we both will remember forever! For example, she’ll remember running through the neighborhood trick-or-treating in a sequined mermaid queen costume, complete with cape, wand, and tiara. And I’ll remember staying up until midnight, sewing, seam ripping, swearing, and “re-sewing” what seems to be endless yards of tulle.
This is what memories are made of!
So now that I think about it, I guess these “Countdown to Halloween” blocks not only are exciting for my children as they run downstairs every morning to see how many more “Nights Til We BOO!” but they are also a daily reminder for me. A reminder that I should be spending a bit more time each morning, afternoon (and probably also evening!) at my sewing machine…creating memories!
Enjoy! And if you’re anything like me, you’ll also be making set of these for pretty much every other holiday!
Nikki, In Stitches
PS…You may have noticed you haven’t heard from me in awhile, and there a lot of reasons why…some good and some not so good. For example, a good reason is because The Nikki, In Stitches Craft Academy has taken off like crazy and it keeps me very busy. A not so good reason is I’ve had quite a few health hiccups this year, and to be honest, I’ve still got some time before I’m back to 100%. But speaking of being back, it feels good. It feels really good. And I hope you’re just as happy to see me back, as I feel to be back. Thanks for sticking around.
- Unfinished wooden blocks, specifically two cubes and one rectangular piece both cubes will fit on top of (NOTE: While you certainly can cut these yourself, now you can find them in your local craft store!)
- Black paint and a paint brush
- An assortment of Halloween decorative papers
- Decoupage medium
- Sand paper
- Alcohol inks and felt applicator pads
- Number and letter stickers (As many of you can guess, I cut mine with my Silhouette from adhesive vinyl, but you can certainly stickers in your craft store that could work!)
- Paint your blocks black and let them completely dry.
- Cut your papers to be 1/4″ smaller than all of the faces they will be applied to. For example, if your blocks are 3 1/2″ cubes, cut all of the papers for the cubes 3 1/4″ square!
- Use your decoupage medium of choice to apply your papers to the faces of all of your wooden blocks and again, let it completely dry!
- I wanted to “age” these because I thought it gave them more a “Halloween” feel so I sanded mine with sand paper, being sure to “rough up” the edges of the blocks themselves, AND the edges of all of the papers! This is totally optional!
- And again, because I wanted these to look old and spooky, I grabbed some alcohol inks and a scrap of white felt and rubbed a little bit on the papers! This one is optional, too!
- Apply your letter and number stickers!
There are two important notes to make sure your countdown blocks work correctly!
NOTE 1: THE BLOCKS ARE NOT THE SAME! If you want to be able to countdown like I did from 31 sleeps, apply your stickers this way:
Block 1: 0, 1, 2, 4, 5, 6
Block 2: 0, 1, 2, 3, 7, 8
NOTE 2: You MUST pick a font where your 6 and 9 are interchangeable by just flipping your cube over!