We thought it might be fun to give you a peek in to what goes in to the making of the annual Halloween card. So we saved a few of the set up photos and I will show you some of our secrets.
We set up this one in the basement. This is our set up shot to make sure the scene is in the frame and we have everything where we want it. This took us about an hour to figure out. Then Andy spent a little time placing lights and setting flashes and marking where the tripod should be. We borrowed some flashes and a “soft box” from a friend (thanks Jesse!) We actually shot it in two pieces, one for each side of the image. That way one of us could be behind the camera and we didn’t have to constantly run back and forth to do the self timer or try to hide a remote control. We took about 100 photos in about 2 hours.
Then we go in to Photoshop. We have learned that there is a balance between what needs to be “real” and what can be Photoshopped pretty easily. I hate lipstick and I wasn’t about to go buy any for one photo, so photoshopping was the perfect choice. Most of the Magic Mirror’s desk is deliberately lost in the shadows, so it didn’t need to be anything special.
My costume was made for the photo. The pattern is a discontinued wedding dress pattern, which I modified. It had the great neckline, I exaggerated the collar and a few other tweaks. The collar, for those who are curious, has a double layer of interfacing inside and the seam up the back of the collar pieces is held together with magnetic necklace clasps. Once you clip magnets on the seam closed, it stands up beautifully. The Magic Mirror shirt is ink-jet iron on transfer paper. The props all come from various places in the house. We raided Andy’s computer junk drawer. The skull candle holder came from my Uncle Lester and a turkey feather from my mom’s back yard. The mask of the Magic Mirror was created this summer with friends over the course of several weekends. Our friend Cy taught us all to make Italian style masks from carta lana (wool paper). Andy’s mask got to be the magic mirror and you will see mine if you are on our Christmas card list. We will write another blog post all about that mask making adventure soon!
Halloween is my favorite holiday! It’s time to remember some of the greatest hits from the costume archives.
If you need Costume Ideas, check out my blog archives for October 2007 for 21 different ideas for easy costumes to make. (check the archives for Oct 2008 and 2009 too!)
We are having a lot of fun with the halloween photo. Thanks for all the comments! For the costume geeks out there, I thought I would talk a little about how I made mine.
The fabric is polyester faux suede. It had the advantage of being a little bit warm (it is MN after all). I wanted double knit, but it didn’t come in the color I wanted, so this was better.
I started with Simplicity 4675. The original uniforms had dolman sleeves and strange curved seams. I am not that in to authenticity.
I wanted a basic princess seam because I knew that would look nice and
fit well. This pattern had a princess seam and a pleated skirt, so it was a good basic place to start.
What did I change?
- added long sleeves. The photos from the series always show them “bracelet length” aka just a bit too short.
- Instead of two large pleats like the pattern called for I just made one and lined it up with the seam from the top. Faux wrap skirt.
- Shortened the skirt. Also not so authentic as mine is too long. Original Series length is not really appropriate to wear to work. And I did wear it to work.
- For the back, I just extended the top down and made the top and skirt all one piece.
- Neckline. I made the pattern neckline to start, tried it on, drew in the new neckline with a disappearing ink marker and cut the new shape.
- Collar. A 4 inch wide piece of the same fabric in black, folded over twice. added gold ric-rac and an insignia made with a scrap of gold satin and some zig-zag stitching
(For anyone who noticed that this post was here and then disappeared and then here again, my darling hubby accidentally deleted my first post.)
I was not organized enough this year to post my annual costume-a-day but you can see them in the archives! Just click that label down at the bottom of the post that says “costume-a-day” and it will take you to see 24 quick and easy costume ideas that you can throw together in the next week. It’s my trick or treat to you!