I’m always in awe of those people who decorate for holidays way in advance. I’m the “let’s make it up the day before” kind of decorator. And sometimes the “why bother” kind of decorator. But this year Little Miss was just dying to have Canada Day decorations.
The past few years have started our family on a geocaching adventure. The extra family time we’ve had these past few months has been spent wisely in exploring the world around us more and has led to many geocaching expeditions.
Last week my husband wanted decided to start creating his own geocaches to add to the community. He went searching online for labels to put on his cache so people know what the geocache is if they come across one by accident and aren’t already in the know.
He found the official waterproof vinyl labels on the official Geocaching Shop, but wanted to print his own labels so he wouldn’t have to wait for shipping. Shipping from the United States has been taking ages lately due to COVID.
You know what? The world doesn’t need another “how to make a Nimbus 2000” tutorial. There are just so many great ones out there already! So instead of adding to the pile of already great video tutorials, I wanted to share something none of them had: a template for cutting out your broom handle.
My research found that most people scale up a photo of a licensed broom by Cinereplicas and print it out to get the right shape for the handle. But, perfectionist that I am, the handle shape wasn’t close enough to that of the movie. So I stitched a bunch of screenshots of the broom in Diagon Alley together to get my pattern as close to the real one as possible.
The place where the Cinereplica differs the most from the movie broom is at the head where the gold Nimbus 2000 logo is placed. Not only is the end of the broom a different shape, but the logo is angled differently on the Cinereplica than the original and has an added line between the word ‘Nimbus’ and ‘2000’.
In researching how to make my own Quidditch robes, I found a ton of tutorials on how to sew robes – from a youtube video how to make a quick robe out of whatever you have on hand, to free handcrafted patterns with full instructions. The one thing I couldn’t find was which font the movies used for the robe numbers.
As it turns out, it’s Tahoma bold, which is probably already on your computer. Take a look:
Quidditch is THE sport in Harry Potter. A combination of soccer and football played on broomsticks. Sound dangerous? Of course not! Never mind the broken bones, concussions, black eyes, and hundred-foot falls. It’s a piece of cake!
” Our job is to make sure that you don’t get bloodied up too badly! Can’t make any promises. Rough game, Quidditch.”George Weasley
What’s that you say? You don’t recall what a Quidditch outfit looks like? No problem, just check out Harry and Draco below. As long as you have your protective gear, a robe, and a broom, you’re off to the races. No pun intended (I think). Or, if you’re looking for a more detailed look into getting kitted out for Quidditch, read up on it in my Quidditch Costume Reference post.
Step 1 for me in making a new costume is copious amounts of research. There are so many questions to answer! Like how many variations of the costumes are there? Does each House have slight variations or do they all follow the same pattern? How do Quidditch players get assigned numbers? Did the costumes evolve through the series? The questions usually get more detailed as the picture becomes clearer. My last questions are usually things like “Which type of metal are the buckles made of?”
Last year our local entertainment expo brought the cast of Back To The Future to town. I was bouncing around the house in excitement when I first heard the news since that’s my favorite trilogy of all time. Seriously just so good. I re-watched the trilogy, introduced it to my kids, and then got down to business.
2 months and an 80’s punk makeover later, I was Spike, a member of Griff’s gang from 2015:
Planning the hoverboards was one of my favorite parts of making this costume. It gave me a chance to geek out in Illustrator with an attention to detail that warmed the cockles of my heart. I started out with just creating the 2 hoverboards my husband, daughter and I needed for our costumes:
My friend Kim and I are working on some quidditch costumes – never mind that we’re about 15 years too late to be on trend. I’ve been doing a deep internet dive for good photos of the Nimbus 2000 since we’re both huge fans of this specific Harry Potter broom. The handle shape and visible wood grain
Draco Malfoy’s Nimbus 2001, although supposedly superior in the Harry Potter books, is a lot more plain in the movies – straight handle, bulkier bristles – and not nearly as appealing:
The year my father turned 70 I knew I wanted something over-the-top for his birthday gift. This is the tale of how I made a scale(ish) model of the skyway sign from Back To The Future and knocked his socks right off.
By now I’m assuming that you know I have this thing for Back To The Future (I might have mentioned it before in my sweet hoverboard costume post). But did you know that my dad gets the same grin on his face if you bring up Back To The Future?
When I was young my mom would spend a few weekends a year away at teacher’s conferences. This left 3 girls home alone with dad. Being the model parent that he is, the first thing we did Friday after school was head over to Blockbuster to rent several VHS tapes and a VCR. Crazy, right?
It was late February when Kim mentioned that the cast of Back To The Future would be at the Calgary Expo. I spent the evening poring over the Expo website, checking ticket prices and schedules (there might also have been a bit of squealing). Not only would the cast be there, but Doc Brown (the inestimable Christopher Lloyd) was going to posing for fan photographs with a DeLorean. I was hooked.
Herein began a 2-month race to the finish for my first con/cosplay. I’d always been a bit envious of Kim and her costumed shenanigans each spring, and now it was my turn – featuring my favorite trilogy of all time.
The next day I kicked off costume planning. After my husband Jer volunteered to dress up with me (he doesn’t even like dressing up, best husband ever) and we got the kids in on it, I knew we had a big job ahead.
The first question was who to dress up as? Marty and Jennifer from the 80s? George and Lorraine at the Enchantment Under The Sea dance? Marty’s kids from the future? Or our final choice – Griff’s gang from 2015. Jer and I have always had a thing for hoverboards and the cheesy futuristic tech in the second movie, so it was an easy sell.
Do you ever wake up in the morning just wanting to make something? Although I hate having to get out of bed, about half an hour later, post-tea and pee break, I’m ready to create. A few weeks back I got the bug to make a knitting/sewing pattern for the Billow Pillow. And today I’d like to share it with you.
Let me take you back to last June when I was digging through all of Knit Picks’ yarn for the perfect colors to match this beautiful mixed media piece of my grandmother. My aunt made back in the ’70s and it hung in my parents’ home for years, so when I look at it I not only enjoy the simplicity but have all those lovely nostalgic feelings mixed in too. See exhibit A for my inspiration: