It's nearly Halloween, and at this point, we may as well just give up on our healthy eating until the new year. Obviously, they're are heaps of Christmas food traditions, one really great classic meal for Thanksgiving, but on Halloween, we indulge in the booty of the beggar's night: candy.
Any kid who participated knows the ritual: dump out your wares on the ground and sort - favorites, edibles, and piles to be traded. In that spirit, Cohen created the Candy Hierarchy, a "taxonomy is based on (even more) years of research and debate, on thorough testing and re-testing, on statistical comparison and quality measurement, on focus group testing, and on a series of FTIR scans that reveal various hydrocarbon peaks and whatnot."
I recently spied this clever design as an embedded ad in my RSS feed reader. I'm pretty sure it's the first one I've ever clicked on.
"Ask me about my zombie shirt... BAM! Instantly turn into a zombie by flipping this shirt over your head."
It's like an instant Halloween costume.
NPR's All Tech Considered blog takes a look at Noel Dickover, a hobbyist pumpkin carving master, who's created some amazingly detailed Star Wars themed jack-o-lanterns. "For Halloween and Star Wars geeks alike, it's truly a harmonic convergence of awesomeness."
As Noel says, "There's a difference between carving a pattern on a pumpkin, and a pumpkin sculpt. In the case of R2-D2, or the Deathstar, for instance, the pumpkin "is" the object, not just a portrait. So in thinking about carving R2-D2, I absolutely had to have a fairly tall, completely cylindrical looking pumpkin. I found one that weighed in at right around 40 lbs. Without this, there's no way I could have gotten the detail I was looking for."
With the exception of Ed Wood, I do my best to avoid Tim Burton movies. (Well, and PeeWee's Big Adventure, but that doesn't really qualify). Sure, they've got the visuals down, but dude can't tell a story...After six minutes, I'm boooooooard.
Thankfully, Burton's first animated short, Vincent, last's just that long. It's a stop-motion treatment of a Burton's eponymous poem about a macabre little boy obsessed with Vincent Price (who narrated) and Edgar Allen Poe. No surprise there, but it's quite fun to watch each year around Halloween time.
You know that spindle-y, cotton-y, faux spider web material they sell in the plastic bags?
I hate that stuff. First, it's gross and creepy; as in, not a cool, eerie Halloween way, but in a octogenarian's chin hair kinda way. And, it's nearly always misused to create a melty cotton ball look that looks nothing like an actual spider web.
But, this process it pretty intriguing. A special balloon-strengthening product called HI-FLOAT is allowed to dry inside an inflated then deflated ballon, and upon re-inflation, produces a string-y, bizarre, somewhat similar to an spider web looking thing, which, when combined with a few plastic creepy crawlers, looks pretty awesome.
I got The Amazing Apple Book as a gift for the Christmas of '92, and I adored each of its pages. I learned about how there's no way the fruit from Adam and Eve was an apple, and all sorts of culinary applications. But my favorite project included carving a face in a fresh, ripe apple and leaving it out to dry and shrivel into a little fruit flavored shrunken face...though my parents always made me store mine in the basement, and they usually caught a coat of mold.
Sometime around the late 80s and early 90s, the Halloween scene got knocked on its head. Publishers released pumpkin carving pattern-and-tool books, and jack-o-lanterns went from simple triangle-based faces to full on cackling witches and haunted house scenes.
And we are all thankful...except in the fifteen years that followed, every home started using these patterns, making these newer more complex scenes just as ubiquitous as their predecessors.
Thankfully, in the last few years, DIY stencil creation has gone through a revolution of sorts, and you can now create detailed custom pieces without need to buy a book at all.
You know those moments when you just look at an object, and you think, "oh my gosh! That totally looks like a _________." It could be something you've never seen before, the form of which immediately stands out to you. Or, it could be something you've seen and used all your life.
Lindsey had one of those moments with a standard one-gallon milk carton. The realization? Stormtrooper helmet. Of course!
Shawnee of Life with Monkey whipped up this super quick pattern and technique for making fabric skulls. They're so easy to make that we can imagine these in bulk hanging from fishing line, or mixed in a candy bowl. We also think the shape would lend itself well to more anatomical skulls, or even Luchalibre masks.
Easy. Peasy. Halloweesy?
Inspired by the lovable neighborhood serial killer Dexter, which began its fifth season last Sunday, Andrea decided to update Martha Stewart's recipe for invisible lollipops by creating a series of blood slide candies for Halloween this year...way creepier than vampire or ghost-y treats.
She explains, "For any of you who aren’t familiar with the show, Dexter is about a serial killer of the same name, who works by day as a forensic analyst for the Miami police department, and by night, cleansing the city of the evil criminals who slip through the cracks of our faulty judicial system. Every serial killer has to keep his mementos and Dexter’s trophy case, consists of a box of slides, each containing one drop of blood from each victim.
For this years gruesome Halloween treat, I decided to create a trophy case of my own."
Skull soap-on-a-rope. We'll be the first to admit, this certainly isn't a super innovative project, pushing the boundries of materials and creativity. BUT! Checking out this super-quick (fifteen second) tutorial does share some pretty cool maker nuggets - like the fact that they make super-easy-melt-and-pour soap, and you can use shaped ice-cube trays to make all sorts of cool projects. Plus, when it's all over, you've got skull-shaped soap on a rope. Which is pretty cool.
Artist Dimitri Tsykalov has carved this juicy and creepy series of skulls from fresh fruits and vegetables.
Whether the images point out the results of the wasteful attitude we take towards food, the evils of the factory farming system, or its just that the freshness makes them look crazy scary...we're frightened.
This Halloween season, get a head start on your anatomical baking with this new 3D skull pan from cake masters Wilton. I spied this dude over the weekend at the craft store, and was delighted to see it put to use in this great feature from Megan at Not Martha.
The pan comes with a pumpkin spice cake recipe, and while making it I rediscovered how much I like the color orange. I had two types of cinnamon to choose from to use in the cake. The cake was good but too sweet for my preferences. I hope to change it a bit and then maybe add a cream cheese frosting brain surprise inside. Or, oh oh!, cream cheese frosting maggots. Ew.
I'm in love with this face.
What should I name him?