Saturday, October 22, 2005

Halloween Costumes 2005 - Part 2

Well, here they are. The final costumes. They took alittle longer than expected but boy was it worth it. They really look good. I just finished up the second crayon hat last night and fitted the head straps this morning. They are going to get their first test tonight at a local Halloween party at the fire hall. Hope they stand up to my boys!

Basically, to give a quick description of how I made these; I bought some colored fabric and some black iron on interfacing as well as some foam paper for the cone hats. I also purchase some wooden rings that I believe are used in embroidery and just pulled off the clamp.

I started by sewing the colored fabric into pillow cases, although they tapered as they moved away from the opening. This way they wouldn't be too baggy at their shoulders. I then hemmed the bottom to hold the wooden ring that would give the costume its circular shape (like a crayon).

I then printed out copies of the crayola logo and the wavy strips (I am anal about making it really look like the original) and used that as a stencil on the black interfacing. We also cut out the words "RED" and "GREEN" for the back of the costumes. My wife and I ironed it all on and cut out the holes. Looked great. Then onto the hats.

It took a couple of tries with white paper to get the right look but I ended up with a shape I liked and cut it out and super glued it into a cone. Then I cut out a ring to attach to the bottom of the cone and then edged the ring with a vertical piece to give the cone hat that distinctive edge that crayons do. Then just placed a little circular piece at the top of the cone to close it up. Then I super glued an elastic piece from ear to eat and, voila!, it was done!

I took way too long with these, but I am such a perfectionist, its disgusting. But I am sorta proud of these. My wife helped me a ton and was so supportive, just letting me do my thing, giving me great input, and helping where she could (and I'd let her, hehe).

Can't wait to show them off tonight at the party. Then they will be wearing them to the PAETEC Halloween Party next Thursday. I won't be around, I'll be out of town on business in Virgina/DC but my sister-in-law is coming out to Rochester that day to go to the party with the wife and kids. But then next Monday we'll do the real thing and hopefully really haul in some massive amounts of candy with these things!
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Friday, October 14, 2005

Google Toolbar works with Firefox 1.5 beta

Looks like Google released a new version of the Google Toolbar for Firefox (they blogged about it here). I wanted 1.5 beta AND my google toolbar a couple weeks I just hacked it. I mean, it actually sounds worse than it was. Just changed the maxVersion level of the plugin to 1.5+ and viola! it works! But maybe I will install the 'official' one that works now. :0)

Wednesday, October 12, 2005

Halloween Costumes 2005 - Part 1

Well, I have been working every night for the past week on the boys halloween costumes. Tonight I decided to take the evening off to watch my show (Lost on ABC) and relax alittle. Anyways, they are going to be crayons. Red and green. I have spent way too much time on making these things as perfect as I could. I have been sewing, cutting, drawing, stitching, etc and boy is it fun, but tiring. I will definitely try and post pictures of the final costumes when they are finished. I will try and describe how I made them as well, I am pretty impressed with myself. I searched the internet to see if anyone had done something like this before (in the way I wanted them to look) and I did not see anything, so I did it all from ideas my wife and I came up with. We'll see...

Amazing Hand-Eye Coordination (Ikaruga Game)

Check out this video where some guy is controlling a 2 player coin-op game using one hand for one player, and one hand for the other. Give it a couple minutes to stream, google video can take a few minutes to load a video.
Anyways, this isn't just some simple top-down shooter, this is one intense looking game. It really looks pretty fun, actually. Its called Ikaruga (see review here on and I guess its available for the gamecube.

digg story

Free Downloadable Fonts

Nice find here on Digg. Digg story here; it links to which has some really great free fonts. From well known fonts from advertisers, movies and TV shows, to some plain out useful fonts. For example, I'm always on the lookout for some nice mono-spaced fonts. Currently I love BitStream Vera Sans Mono (available on dafont, by the way), since I am coding all the time. But here is a nice list of other mono-spaced fonts for use. Give them a try, I know I will be running them through their paces in Eclipse.