Goth Halloween

goth crown e

It’s time to talk about costumes again; one of my favorite topics! I haven’t made many full costumes lately, but a friend of mine Sara Rabinovich is a master seamstress and is creating  some wonderful Halloween/Holiday get ups! The wonderful thing about Sara’s pieces is that she designs them, makes the pattern for each piece and sews them together with finesse. I used to buy store-bought patterns for sewing, until I moved to Israel I was unfamiliar with the pattern-making process. If you can make your own patterns (as well as sew your own costumes) your creative possibilities double! Two of my favorite costume accessories are the crown and the Ruff. Sara’s black crown is based on the Gothic style: tall and pointed; this crown works well for a Halloween Goth princess but I also think it could be worn by the Evil Queen for an Alice and Wonderland themed costume. A Ruff (short for ruffle) is a piece to cover the tops of the gathered shirts worn in the 16th and 17th centuries. Sara’s Elizabethan ruff sits like a cloud around the neck;  it’s made from black organza trimmed in exquisite lace. The ruff is adorned with hand-sewn white beads and the neck band is made from satin, so as not to irritate the skin. You can see many more of Sara’s fine handmade ruffs on her Etsy site:

Renaissance neck piece worn in the 16th and 17 century (western Europe)
Renaissance ruff worn in the 16th and 17th centuries (western Europe).

The rest of this handmade costume make it suitable for a Goth Princess, a masquerade ball as well as elegant Vampire attire! The skirt is made from organza with layers of tulle to give the skirt a “lift”.

See more of Sara’s creations at Costume Renaissance:

goth princess

Needle Felted Halloween Masks

Needle Felted Rooster Mask

I don’t know what it is about costumes and masks that get my imagination going! Emili has brought this rooster mask to life (after much complaining about having to model it); from this costume I’ve thought to make angry birds, a punk mohawk headpiece, a gladiator helmet and an owl mask-alas, there’s just not enough time.

Laura Lee Burch needle felting
Vogue Elephant

This mask and pose make Elli look like a young celebrity elephant posing for a photo shoot in Elephants Today.

Needle felted Rat Mask-Where's my cheese?

  The Rat Masks were made as an ode to my girls’ pet rats: Bibbl and Harry. Check out the fimo teeth!

Hallowee, Purim, Theater masks
Rat teeth detail

And last but not least, the very pink lounge singer, the elegant Ms. Flamingo…

Halloween masks
Ms. Flamingo

See last years needle felted masks here: and

You can find this year’s mask in my shop:  here

Waldorf Costumes: It’s Not Easy Being A Carrot!

rabbits like carrots
Everybody, especially rabbits, like carrots.

Emili the carrot dosen’t know it yet, but she is being admired by the hungry bunny, carrots and bunnies are of course, natural enemies. As I was needle felting the carrot hat, I had a vision of the carrot being chased by a rabbit, is that wrong?

carrots don't like rabbits
The carrot notices an unwanted admirer.

I think my warped sense of humor took over during this photo shoot of my Waldorf inspired costumes. Elli really got into role of the over enthusiastic rabbit; I love the leering look the rabbit gives the carrot. Of course you don’t have to promote the predatory idea like I did, but it made me laugh. Carrots should be hanging out with their fruit and veggie friends, it’s much more wholesome!

fruity friends
Emili the carrot and her fruity friends, Lili the strawberry and Helen the apple.

Playing and Teaching with Needle Felted Masks

Let's play

You know, I like my pieces of art to be useful; save for the specific holiday pieces that will be stored away till next year. I made these animal masks for Halloween, but they’ll be very useful all year round for imaginative play. I’m going to hang them in the playroom and let the girls and their friends play dress up with them and at the same time I think they’ll make interesting decorations. The masks are very strong and they’ll hold up well in the hands of a bunch of kids. 

Needle felted pig mask

I’ve recently started to teach English to a little four and a half year old French girl and my toys and masks have become very useful in teaching her new words. The toys and masks engage her, she wants to play with them and they give me the perfect opportunity to teach her new words and ideas. I think that an activity helps her to remember new words as we use the words over and over again. I also draw with her (she doesn’t read or write yet), so I draw pictures of the words we’re learning (usually one of the toys I’ve made) and then she draws what I’ve drawn and then we play with the toy in the picture. Her reward for studying 20-30 minutes is playtime at the end of the lesson. 

Needle felted sheep mask

We made a game out of the masks. After Matilde found my masks sitting on a table, she put them on and started trotting around the room with a cow mask on her face. I asked her what the animal said (moo) and then I told her the name of the animal (cow). We did this for all six masks. I laid all six masks in a row on the table and told her to choose the correct mask according to the sound or word that I said. Moo, cow,  baaa or sheep, she needed to choose the correct mask for the word or sound that I made. This has been a very successful game, as now she know the words and sounds for cow, horse, sheep, dog, cat and rooster! Next we’ll learn what theses animals do, like run, stand, eat, sleep, walk, etc.

Needle felted cat mask

Really Scary Stuff

Oh no!

Halloween is a time for costumes, parties and scary stuff, but what is scary to you? My kids think these things are scary:

  • the dark
  • monsters
  • dead people
  • getting lost
  • a bad dream
  • entering a black hole
  • quick sand
  • a head that turns all the way around
  • scary movies
  • hearing spooky noises in the house

but I think these things are scary:

  • my computer crashes
  • driving in India
  • having to use a public restroom in India
  • hot dogs
  • showing up at the airport and realizing my passport has expired
  • war
  • extreme anything, i.e. amusement park rides, political or religious views, sports
  • driving while the gas tank reads empty
  • trying to get out of the parking lot after a big concert
  • my daughters wants to date or learn to drive

What frightens you?

Note: I made this Frankenstein costumes for my store last year. The Frank hat is made from felt, the jacket is wool.