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My Little Haunted House Redo

So I am creative and creative things are what my soul needs to survive. Thankfully I have been VERY lucky with my business that is all creative; all the time. It is also feast-to-famine, but I not complaining. I have undiagnosed ADHD. We had my youngest officially tested and the psychologist basically checked all my boxes too. I had suspected it ever since that drug commercial where they ask "Do you ever feel like you're watching tv in your head, but someone else has the remote?" I was all "Um, YEAH!" But I was never tested. Some days are more of a struggle than others.. and there went a squirrel! This isnt a ADHD post, silly squirrels! So back to my story! With the economy down, I have found that I have more free time. I am a Pinterest fool and will just dump my entire morning or afternoon into scrolling. One day I happened upon the coolest thing I've ever seen! Someone took a dollhouse and made it creepy! 1st I was all upset bc WHY DIDN'T I THINK OF THAT?!?!?!?! We had 2 Barbie houses that I just put on the curb a few years back! ARGH! Then I was all "Where do I get a house now???" I didn't want to pay for it, because I know this is a disposable mentality civilization so surely someone I know has one they are about to toss out, right??? So off to my SM to ask away.... Well it turns out I had only one friend that was getting ready to sell hers, but again - that wasn't the point really of my asking. I wanted it for free. I had even said it could be broken! So back to the drawing board! I thought ok, I can try garage sales and maybe get one cheap? or a thrift store maybe??? Then my favorite children's consignment sale came around and I thought that was a perfect place to find one cheap-ish. I participate so I could go early and see what was what. Well, the universe smiled on me!

I went to bring my stuff to sell and as I am walking out I spy something big and pink sticking out of the trash can! NO! It can't be! so I go take a quick peek and there it is! It was smaller, Little Peoples castle - smaller than I was hoping but hell! If I can get it for free, who am I to look a gift horse in the mouth? And don't be all "GROOOOOOSSSSSSS!!! You took something out of the trash can!" There was no actual garbage in there - just plastic toys with similar afflictions - AND it was sitting there right on top. Plus it's plastic so bleach doesn't hurt it... which I did hit it with when I got home anyway because kids are sticky. (I have 2 of my own.) But I digress!

There was a lady standing there so I asked about it and she said they couldn't sell it because a battery exploded in it. Shoot! My kids are teen and tween! They would NOT be interested in this thing one iota, so I ask if I could take it. She had a look of worry and concern and asked what I was going to do with it so I told her. A GUY!!! that was working there overheard and said "Oh yeah! I took a Frozen castle and did that." I thought "Holy crap that must look amazeballs! All pointy and Gothicky and cool!" I assured her that I would be careful, and take it home, clean it really good before I redid it, so she said ok.

OFF I WENT! OMG! And in my excitement, I forgot to take perfect "before" photos! I kid you not!

I do currently work for a local print magazine that comes out about every other month, and production rolled around, as well as a few client requests here and there. Production is an all day, every day for about a week-ish. Obviously my "spare" time was non-existent at times, so it took me a few months of here and there to get it to a point I felt ok actually putting it out. The original plan was to put it inside the fireplace, but I felt it was kind of flat so I added another tower feature using an empty oatmeal container and cutting a globe ornament I already had. It still fit, but then the top of the tower got lost once inside. It was also too short to put on the hearth so how do I fix that? Well I just made it on a hill of course! Again the whole purpose was to mostly have recycled and up cycled/repurposed materials that would be trashed or sent for recycling. I found the perfect sized box. It got a paint job, I made a set of stairs and a landing and there we are! Perfect!While I say the project was supposed to be repurposing as much as I could, there was a limit. Dollar 25 Tree to the rescue! This little castle came just the castle - no furniture nor inhabitants. I already had some little halloween village stuff that I had gotten on clearance years before that I had in some plants - you know - a kin to the little garden fairy decorations.... So I had one inhabitant - a cute little fairy holding a crystal ball. I also had this really cool Malificent as a dragon pen from an old kids meal that was just sitting around. I also ride in a Marid Gras , so I already had some stuff that I would have used to decorate our signature throws with. I did have to buy spray paint. From the Dollar 25 Tree, I bought some Halloween bones that I used for window coverings as well as fence railing (pix at the end). I purchased some fairy garden tombstones and some black cats/pumpkin sets, teeny glass "specimen" bottle with corks, and a globe. Most everything else is stuff I created from things I already had. I did not keep track of costs because it dragged out over a few months, but I would estimate I ended up spending about $20. Spray paint was the most expensive thing on the list and this took 2 cans. I had to buy one...

I did repurpose my orchid branch into a tree using wire and insulation foam that I already had. My orchid had finished blooming and the stem was all dried out, so I clipped it off. As I was about to toss it in the trash I actually looked at the shape of it and thought "Wow! That's actually a cool shape and kind of creepy too!" I mean it's an organic thing so I took out a thin gauge wire and just wrapped it. As I was wrapping it, a piece broke off, but I just wired it back on and BAM! I put it in a small wood block and added the spray foam to cover it. Scrap wood went into making the table, and champagne cork cage was converted into a chair. I used already on-hand popsicle sticks to make the book/specimen shelf.

I did create a "Whomping Willow" from wire on-hand, old newspaper and a dust broom. I did end up splurging on a Hot Wheels car that is the make and model from the movie... So maybe I spent about $25. Still not too shabby imo. Final is at the end to get the full effect.

So the whole theme was little nods to "creepy" things. I had Disney, Harry Potter, Gary Oldman (Bram Stokers Dracula and Harry Potter), Stranger Things, Wednesday and just general Halloween stuff like pumpkins, tombstones, bats and the like items. There is also a small nod to Blue October. One of their main images is a heart with an X across it. The front door had a "peep hole" in that shape so I used the bones and made an X over the hole. And here is the final set up (minus its own "12 foot skeleton. It's only 1 foot tall, but missing from this pic for some reason....):

And I just scored a large Barbie house from the curb a few weeks ago. It is HUGE! and parts were broken but that is OK! I have already started the basic deconstruction and rearrange to make another house! YEAY! But where I live we have Mardi Gras and it's literally knocking on my door! I ride on February 3rd and I have not a single signature throw ready. This project is on the sidelines for now, but this is what the house looked like in its full glory! The one I have was clearly sitting in the sun and the top floor is a mess and will be reimagined. The opposite side will face out though... I think. And yes! That is a toilet in the bathroom! LOL!

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