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Posts Tagged ‘halloween ideas’

DIY Costume: Griffin Family

Wednesday, November 10th, 2010

Meet Griffin! An adorable 19-month-old boy from St. Paul, Minnesota.

His mother, Sarah, was inspired by Green Halloween® to make Griffin an eco-friendly “Griffin” costume for Halloween this year!

(Be sure to check out Griffin’s 2009 owl costume made from wool fleece and Eco Felt).

As you may or may not know, a Griffin is part lion, part eagle so what’s a Griffin mama and daddy to wear? You got it!

Sarah was a “Eagle Mother” and her husband, Andrew, a “Lion Dad”.

Each costume was made with either recycled materials Sarah found at Goodwill or from home, and Eco Felt or wool felt. One of her favorite transformations was using an orange bath mat for Andrew’s lion mane!

All in all, Sarah spent less than $15 on supplies, which also made it a thrifty Halloween!

Sarah, we love your resourcefulness and style; can’t wait to see what you come up with next year.

Green Halloween® is a nationwide non-profit initiative started by mother-daughter team Corey Colwell-Lipson and Lynn Colwell. In 2010, Green Halloween became a program of EcoMom® Alliance and has events in cities across the U.S.

Oeuf Dream Dress-ups Design Competition!

Wednesday, November 3rd, 2010

The lovely folks over at Oeuf is holding a creative costume competition. Even though Halloween is officially over, it doesn’t mean the creativity has to end. All you need for entering is a picture (drawn by kids of course!) and what their dream costume is. Submission deadline is November 14th, 2010 at midnight. One lucky child will have their dream costume made especially for them by the Oeuf team. The winning costume may even be apart of Oeuf’s dress up collection. Now that is a sweet deal!

Check out the Oeuf Dream Dress-ups page for details on how to enter. Happy drawing!

Green Halloween® is a nationwide non-profit initiative started by mother-daughter team Corey Colwell-Lipson and Lynn Colwell. In 2010, Green Halloween became a program of EcoMom® Alliance and has events in cities across the U.S.

Guest Post: Extra Candy? Try Candy Experiments!

Tuesday, November 2nd, 2010

Loralee Leavitt is the creator of Her articles about candy experiments have appeared in Family Fun, Parents, Mothering, Highlights, ParentMap, and Miami Family Magazine.  Recently she presented candy experiments at the USA Science and Engineering Festival.

Pictures reprinted by permission of

As a Green Halloween reader, you’ve filled your Halloween bowl with healthy treats and eco-friendly toys for trick-or-treaters.  But unless your own trick o’ treaters stick to Green Halloween houses, they’ll bring home loads of candy you don’t want them to eat.  What can you do with it all?

Try candy experiments.

Three years ago, my daughter started our family’s candy experiment tradition.  “What would happen if I put these Nerds in water?” she asked me.  I got her a bowl of water, she dissolved the Nerds into a lovely purple liquid, and we poured it down the drain.  When she asked again a few days later, I covered the table with bowls of water.  It didn’t take long for my two children to dissolve and dump their entire Halloween stash.

Since that fateful November, we’ve gone through bags and bags of candy.  We’ve dissolved it, smashed it, floated it, microwaved it, frozen it, painted with it, and tried whatever else we could think of.  We’ve learned about density, dissolving in hot or cold water, testing for acid in sour candy, and water displacement (what happens when your son dumps so much candy in a bowl of water that the water overflows).

At, we’ve posted a dozen of these experiments that kids can try at home.  For instance:

Acid Test: Test for acid by dissolving sour candy in water, then add a spoonful of baking soda to make bubbles

Find Hidden Candy: check labels to see how much sugar is in a serving of food, then weigh sugary candy so the kids can see how much sugar that really is

Oil Test: Melt chewy candy to separate out oil spots

But you don’t have to use our experiments.  Put out bowls of water, table knives, rolling pins, and whatever else you think might help them get creative with their candy.  You’ll be surprised how fast they go through it all–without eating it!

So don’t be dismayed by big bags of Halloween sugar.  Set up a candy lab in your kitchen, and watch the candy dissolve away.

Green Halloween® is a nationwide non-profit initiative started by mother-daughter team Corey Colwell-Lipson and Lynn Colwell. In 2010, Green Halloween became a program of EcoMom® Alliance and has events in cities across the U.S.

3 Alternatives to Tossing Leftover Halloween Candy

Monday, November 1st, 2010

Halloween has come and gone. Time to put away all the decorations and save your costumes for next year’s costume swap.

The only obstacle standing is the heap of leftover candy. What do you do with it? Better yet, what can you do?

Instead of just tossing, or keeping around to consume, we’ve prepared a list of unusual ways to reuse and recycle unwanted sweets.

1. Compost

Instead of tossing Halloween treats in the trash, why not “recycle” by composting? If you have curbside yardwaste/food composting, just unwrap candy and toss in the bin. If you have an off-the ground compost bin, you can also include leftovers there. Composting candy in a ground-heap compost may attract pests, so another idea is to push pieces, one at a time, into the soil of houseplants.

For additional information, check out these these resources. Happy composting!

2. Halloween candy buy back

Did you know there’s a program that actually buys YOUR leftover candies and uses them in care packages for oversea soldiers? What a great idea! It’s called Halloween candy buy back and they provide the candy for Operation Gratitude. If you have the leftover candy to spare, why not register with them and make someone else’s life a little sweeter?

Operation Gratitude received and shipped out 60 tons of candy last year and is hoping to be able to ship 60,000 care packages this year. Check out their fantastic video if you’re still not convinced!

3. Candy experiments

(Loralee of has kindly agreed to writing a (forthcoming) guest post for our blog but we’ve decided to include her in this post anyway!) You might wonder, what could candy experiments possibly mean? Well, it sounds exactly as it is! Making experiments with candy. This provides a fun activity for everyone in your household and who doesn’t love a little science experiment? Grab your flasks and goggles folks because you never know what chemical reactions will result in mixing these candies together! Have fun!

Green Halloween® is a nationwide non-profit initiative started by mother-daughter team Corey Colwell-Lipson and Lynn Colwell. In 2010, Green Halloween became a program of EcoMom® Alliance and has events in cities across the U.S.

Last minute Halloween Craft: Spider Web!

Friday, October 29th, 2010

Guest Post by Vanessa Valencia. Her blog is located at www.aFancifulTwist.Com and her website is located at Www.VanessaValencia.Com.

I think we should do something extra delightful today, don’t you?  I have so much fun cutting paper, and figuring out my own easier (to me) ways of doing things, that I decided to share.

So, I have 2 paper spider web techniques for you today…

I have been working on this post for a couple of days, and I hope you enjoy making these as much as I do….

To start, all you need is regular white printer paper, and scissors.

You can get fancy with spray paint and glitter a little later.  But for now, grab a piece of printer paper, and some scissors.

I like printer paper because it makes it easy to cut through the layers.  And, a coat of spray paint makes them a bit sturdy.

(I have moss and green metallic paint on my thumb in the spirit of swamp creatures, just for this spooky post)

I am going to share 2 techniques.

A simple and easy spider web technique…

And, a trickier way to use the “snowflake-paper-flower-urchin” method I showed you last year (see here), by spookifying it a bit.

Let’s begin with a simple paper spider web.

First, take a sheet of printer paper, and fold it in half, with the open side facing up.

Once you have folded it in half, fold it in half again, but only crease it at the bottom.

Next, fold the bottom right hand side up, so that you create a “V” point at your center mark.

Now, take your left side of paper, and fold it towards the back, lining up the edges.

Your paper should now make a “V” shape with a funny top.

We want to cut off the funny top.

So, make a horizontal line across your paper about here…

Now, cut the funny top of the paper off, to create a true “V”…

And now, you have a true “V” shape.

The next thing we will do is fold our ”V” in half.

Doing this will create a folded side, and an open side…

Face the open side to the right, and the closed/folded side to the left.

Next, we shall begin defining where we will make our cuts.

Take a pen or pencil and draw a line that starts in the upper right hand corner, and swoops down to the left.

This is the cut that will create the outer spider web shape.

Cut that piece off…

The next thing you will do is draw 4 long rectangles from the right side, to the left.  However, you must not cut into the left folded side, as it holds everything together.  So, make sure your rectangle ends a little before the left hand fold.

See below…

Now, you will cut out your rectangles.

Again, make sure you do not cut through the left hand side.

Tip:  The thickness of your cut rectangles determines how delicate your final spider web shall be.  Remember, thicker cuts equal less paper, and therefore more delicate spider webs.  You’ll see.

Let’s keep going…

So, after you have cut out all four rectangles. Make a tiny snip at the bottom.

The final bottom snip creates the center of your spider web.  The larger the snip, the larger the center opening of your finished spider web.

Next, open up your spider web…

It’s okay if it isn’t perfect because the paint and glitter will fix it all :)

YAY!  A spider web.  Woo hoo!  Are you dancing in your chair?

You better be, or elssssssse…

Oops, that’s my witchie self peeking out there ;)

You can use any paper you’d like.  I used printer paper for ease of cutting, but feel free to try this with any paper.  Scrapbook paper works beautifully too.  Especially a dark-distressed vintagey scrapbook paper.

Before we try painting these, let’s try the trickier cutting technique, okay?

The trickier cutting technique creates all sorts of wild paper-cuts.

Here’s an example.

See what I mean?

Below we will try the “spookified snowflake” technique.

Again, I am using a piece of white printer paper.

To begin, fold the right bottom corner upwards to create a triangle…

Now, cut off the long rectangular strip at the top, to form a true triangle.

Then, take your triangle, and fold it in half again.  To form a smaller triangle.

Holding your smaller triangle upside down, fold the right side into the center.

Then, fold the left side to the back, so that all edges line up…

Coming together, to form a ”V” shape.

Your folded paper should look like this.

The next step is to cut off the paper tops, and create a true “V” shape.

The first thing we must do is draw our cutting guide lines.

First draw a line with a peek, like I have done below…

Then, go ahead and make your first cut.

The next thing we will do is draw a line in the center, with down swooping lines on either side.

The most important thing to remember with this type of snowflake/spider web is that your center line marks your cutting stop point.

You must not cut through your center line.

Below is an example of how I cut up to the center line, but not through it.

Make a snip at the bottom, to create your center opening.  Then, open up your cutting, to see what you made.

That’s the funnest part ;)

Try another one…

Invent your own cuts, but follow the rule of not cutting through the center.

Oooo, spooky star-web….

Okay, I am ready to paint and glitter!

I tested two kinds of spray paints.  A matte Master craft spray paint, and an everyday multi-use gold spray paint that we had in the workshop.  They both work great.

Make sure you do the spray painting outside, in a super well ventilated area.

I took a few glitter choices outside with me, because I simply sprinkle my glitter on the wet paint…

I tried a gold spray paint first.  I was super pleased.  Then I sprinkled a funky gold-multi fairy sparkle on it…

I then painted a few traditional black spider webs, and sprinkled some black fairy dust on them while the paint was still wet.

Then I stepped outside of the proverbial box…

I painted one of my star-snowflake-webs in black, and then sprayed some olive green in the center.  I sprinkled gold glitter on the green, and I really liked it.

Now I have a whole collection of spookylicious hanging treats.

And all virtually free, and fun to make.

How can you go wrong?

I am going to try the same spray paint technique with snowflakes during the holidays.

I am hooked.

(The photos don’t show how sparkly these are in person)

Off I go to make more…..

Have a super magical Halloween!!

Green Halloween® is a nationwide non-profit initiative started by mother-daughter team Corey Colwell-Lipson and Lynn Colwell. In 2010, Green Halloween became a program of EcoMom® Alliance and has events in cities across the U.S.