Wednesday, September 9, 2015

Dragon Ball Z Halloween Costume

The Girl decided on her Halloween costume early this year (thank goodness). She wanted to be Goku from Dragon Ball Z...minus the excessively bulging muscles and spiky hair.

For the boots, we found some suede women's boots at the thrift store that fit The Girl perfectly. A bit of colored electrical tape transformed it! (The electrical tape stuck really well to the suede!)

Goku has a blue shirt underneath the top of his jumpsuit. The Girl planted to wear a blue t-shirt but the jumpsuit would be in 2 pieces rather than one - an orange oversirt and orange pants.

The decoration on the orange overshirt was a little more involved than the boots but was not difficult.

There was a small patch on the front of the shirt and a large one on the back. This project would have been easier if I could have simply printed a design onto iron-on transfer paper or if I had a cricut and fabric vinyl. I didn't have either so we found another way. We're very pleased with the results!

To make Goku's Shirt, you will need the following:
  • An orange shirt (we turned ours inside out to hide the previous screenprinted design on it). Be sure you don't want it for anything else because it will be cut and patches sewn or glued on to it.
  • white scrap fabric - enough for both patches
  • freezer paper
  • black spray paint
  • Printouts of the symbols
  • Cardboard
  • Sharpie
  • Exacto knife
  • Scissors
  • Iron
  • Tweezers (optional)
First, cut the sleeves off of your orange t-shirt and trim the neckline to resemble Goku's orange shirt as shown in the picture. Set the orange shirt aside until later.

Draw out the design on freezer paper (the non-shiny side).

Next, cut out the pieces using your Exacto knife and/or scissors. Here, you can see that I numbered the pieces in their placement order so I would place them correctly on my fabric.

Carefully place the pieces of your stencil on your fabric (shiny side down).

Iron in place.

Spray with spray paint in a well ventilated area (you could also brush on paint. The stencil is very secure once ironed)

Once dry, you can remove your stencil. It peels away easily from your fabric.

Then cut out your design and stitch in place on the costume.

The pants were made with a pair of karate pants from the thrift store that we dyed with RIT dye. Orange scrubs would have been PERFECT but we couldn't find any.

We used Tangerine RIT dye. It produced the PERFECT bright orange! Just be sure to follow the directions, stir the mixture often (so the fabric is colored evenly) and let it sit for a long while to get a really deep, rich orange.

Finishing Touches:
For the wristbands and the belt, we took an old blue child's t-shirt and cut it up. The sleeves were cut off and The Girl stitched them smaller so they would fit her wrists. For the belt, he bottom portion of the t-shirt was cut into wide t-shirt yarn and stretched until it curled in on itself. You can search up t-shirt yarn tutorials. There's a good tutorial at Mollie Makes on how to make your own t-shirt yarn.

I am only now realizing I took gobs of photos during the making of the costume but am woefully lacking in pictures of the finished costume.

DISCLOSURE:This post may contain affiliate links. I earn from qualified purchases. Thank you for supporting Little House In Colorado.

Sunday, August 9, 2015

Not A Native (But I Got Here As Fast As I Could)

This is the only bumper sticker I have ever wanted to purchase in the last 20 years:

I finally found one in a gift shop on our recent trip to Mt. Evans. There was no question about it...the bumper sticker was going home with me.

Want one? You can buy it from Sandy online at

Although most people I've met in Colorado come from somewhere else, we seem to agree (with just a few exceptions) that there is no other place we'd rather live.

Yes, the winters can be fierce. Yes, the summers can be devastatingly hot and dry. Yes, living anywhere near the Denver Metro area can be super expensive. But Colorado is so beautiful and so awe-inspiring and so unlike anywhere else that it makes you want to stay forever.

Of course, that is my opinion.

DISCLOSURE:This post may contain affiliate links. I earn from qualified purchases. Thank you for supporting Little House In Colorado.

Monday, March 2, 2015

I Sew So-So

This post was originally published on a blog for our Etsy shop, The Peddler's Cart

My mom signed me up for a sewing class when I was about 10 years old. I was the only person there under the age of "old". Of course, to my 10-year-old self, anyone over the age of 18 looked "old" to me and "30-something" was just...OLD. Don't ask me what I think about 30-something now. I certainly don't think of it as "old".

Anyway, back to that sewing class.

I remember I made a short jumpsuit in a bright rainbow seersucker fabric. I would probably gag if I saw the fabric now...(maybe...I just exclaimed the other day when I saw the same type of material, "Oh look! Seersucker!")

I was mighty proud of that jumpsuit. If I find an old picture of it I'll have to post it here...Maybe.

I sewed it partially on a machine provided by the class and partially at home. I created many things after that on my mom's sewing machine. It was one of those mighty Viking Husqvarnas with the steel chassis that was so heavy it would crush your bones if it fell on you. Well, I was 10 years old. It was heavy to me. But I loved it.

1976 Husqvarna Viking 6440. I loved all the stitch options available on this! Photo Source: Husqvarna Viking Sewing Machines (Official US Fan Page) on Facebook
Years (and years and years) later, I had my own sewing machine. It had been my grandma's. No, it wasn't a treadle machine but it wasn't new either. And it had seen lots of use. Baachan had been an excellent sewer ("Baachan" is the informal Japanese word for "Grandma" and my grandma was Japanese).

I didn't have much luck with that machine. I managed to sew things once in awhile, valances, pillow covers, costumes...but that was usually after many hours of grumbling, swearing, frustration and tears. Not to mention repeatedly ripping out balls of twisted, tangled thread and re-threading the machine. When the machine and I got along, all was right with the world. When it didn't may not want to come around the house on one of THOSE days. Luckily, I mostly sewed Halloween costumes that only needed to last through the end of October.

Then I picked up a 90's model Singer from a yard sale. When I take the time to match my thread, tension and fabric together, I can usually manage to get a really good stitch. When I don't, everything goes downhill. You know what they say, "Use the right tool for the job".

I think I need a sewing machine that has a set-up-and-sew automatic feature like my point-and-shoot camera's auto-focus. That would be wonderful! Or perhaps I should just set up the machine for one type of thread, fabric and tension and never attempt a project not requiring those things.

Vintage McCall's 2440 Wrap-Around Apron Sewing Pattern
But I do enjoy sewing. Finding all the vintage sewing patterns and notions for our Etsy shop really inspire me to dig out the sewing machine and have another go at it.

DISCLOSURE:This post may contain affiliate links. I earn from qualified purchases. Thank you for supporting Little House In Colorado.

Monday, February 23, 2015

Pretend Play

This post was originally published on a blog for our Etsy shop, The Peddler's Cart

The Girl loves to play "pretend".

She has piles of Littlest Pet Shop toys and has built cardboard houses and fashioned paper accessories for them. She has even molded her own "pets" out of Sculpey clay.

She is eleven years old now, but she has been doing this for years. When she was about three years old, she played mostly with Little People toys. She could occupy herself for hours with those Little People and their animals. In fact, I think the Little People animals may have talked to each other more than the people did.

Perhaps this love of "pretend play" is universal with all children, or perhaps some children enjoy it so much more than others. I myself loved to play with Little People as a girl (and Weeble people, too).

The Little People of my day were much more basic than the modern versions but they still sparked the imagination.

You can find these Fisher Price Little People toys, as well as other vintage toys in our Etsy shop.

UPDATE: The Little People toys shown here have sold.

DISCLOSURE:This post may contain affiliate links. I earn from qualified purchases. Thank you for supporting Little House In Colorado.

Tuesday, February 10, 2015

Staying in the Know

This post was originally published on a blog for our Etsy shop, The Peddler's Cart

It's hard to believe Valentine's Day is almost upon us! Where did the New Year go?

We've been busy dealing with the not-so-fun end-of-year necessities (taxes) and trying to squeeze in time for the ultra-fun for more vintage pieces for you! We've found some really fun and exciting stuff!

Sometimes it can be hard to remember to look back at our Etsy shop often to see what is new, but there are several ways you can easily keep up-to-date.

From Facebook:

The first super-easy way to be kept up-to-date is to "Like" us on Facebook. You can visit us directly on Facebook or you can click the Facebook button on this page to the left or on our Etsy shop page just under the store name.

We're constantly updating Facebook with photos of new finds and links to their Etsy listings. If you opt to "follow" and/or receive "Notifications", you will get updates in your own Facebook news feed (you can opt out of this at any time).

This is a quick and easy way to receive updates on new items we've found even before they reach the Etsy shop! Then if you are particularly interested in an item before it is listed, send us a message on Facebook or a Conversation on Etsy inquiring about it. We'll fill you in on the item's details and even set up a reserved listing for you on Etsy.

From Pinterest:

We are big fans of  Pinterest. You can find us there pinning our favorite web pages showcasing all sorts of vintage goodness but we pin links to our own vintage offerings as well. Follow one board or all of them!

From Within Etsy:

If you find yourself on Etsy a lot, perhaps the easiest way to find our new listings would be to add our shop to your favorites. You can do this simply by visiting our Etsy shop and clicking the heart icon on the left-hand side of the page next to "Add to Favorites".

We you list us as one of your favorite shops, our new listings will be displayed on your Etsy "Home" page. You will also be able to easily find us from your Etsy profile page.

We'll be bringing you more awesome vintage finds so pick one or more of the above ways to stay informed of our ever-changing inventory!

DISCLOSURE:This post may contain affiliate links. I earn from qualified purchases. Thank you for supporting Little House In Colorado.