Pumpkin Pie Hair Accessory, DIY

Dear Reader-

I have been asked many times about my unconventional hair accessories. The coffin, the vegetables, the party umbrellas….how did I make them? So when I went to start my latest project, pumpkin pie, I took notes.

The idea came from one of my clients, as we were discussing what food (fake food that is) I could use for my Thanksgiving accessory. I couldn’t find a fake turkey leg to save my life, so my client said “hey, pumpkin pie!” Oh yes.

Two types of felt, a pie tin, craft foam, fake whipped cream, (thanks to Etsy) and I am on my way.


Now for the “crust.” I cut the edges wavy and glued it to the pie tin as if I had laid in an actual crust. I then added the foam inside.


Now to add the “pumpkin” overlay.


Can’t forget the whipped cream! Just a few dollops.


Now the hard part- how to attach it to my hair??? My usual duckbill clip won’t work because the bottom of the pie tin is totally flat. It will be lifted on that side if I use one of these.


So I decide to go just with bobby pins, which is as flat as I can get.


Done! In and secure.




Eat dessert first,




I’ve Cut My Hair Off………So Now What?

Dear Reader-

Well! To quote my dear Grandma, now everything!

First of all, congratulations. You have made a decision and stuck to your guns, as they say. You went in and said “I want to cut it off!” and you meant it. But now that it is actually all gone, you have to move on the next step. The Now What.

It may take you longer to style it now that you can’t just throw it up in a ponytail. This is not a bad thing mind you, just different. You will now be forced to experiment with different twists and curls, maybe break out your diffuser if your hair is wavy/curly. Test a wax or pomade for a spiky effect if you have really lobbed it off, or a new way to work your bobby pins if you went for more of a classic bob shape. Any way you cut it (pun intended) it will take some thought and research on your part to get your new look gong in the right direction. You may not be satisfied with just buying a flat iron and calling it a day. ATCT certainly hopes this is the case. We love a good experiment gone beautiful.

Good luck!


p.s-September is Stephen King month on Encore. Stand By Me, Christine…..Classics!

Canning Homemade Strawberry Jam

Dear Reader-

As one starts to pickle, she begins to feel more brazen about canning. Maybe death isn’t imminent from ptomain poisoning. Maybe I can do this! What else can I try?

For me the next step was jam. Hubs grandmother has given us her jam before, and it is always so tasty. I find an age old recipe for strawberry jam that is not too intimidating, where else? The Farmers Almanac! We grow a small crop of strawberries in our Victory Garden, so the first step is to harvest what I can, and I purchase the rest.

These lilliputian strawberries are my favorite. What they lack in size they make up for in cuteness and perfect shape.


They need to be hulled and mashed. I have a lot of old kitchen utensils that I love to use. That is actually an old potato masher. Thanks Mom!


Next we mix in the sugar and cook the fruit mixture. Mmmmm, healthy!


Now we use all the canning equipment and other ingredients. This includes the most essential piece-the beer. This does not go into the jam. This goes into my mouth.


We have been sterilizing the jars to prevent death. This is the new jar grabber that came with my canning kit.


This is my old one. It was a promotional item given away by the garage Bertone and Bowen, complete car service. Fun stuff, right?


Now the fruit is cooked, the jars are sterilized, and it is time to rush the concoction into the jars and the jars into the canning bath for 10 minutes before they become contaminated by some sort of deadly virus. Man, those canning people sure scare you when it comes to sterilizing! I’m all about it, but the Black Plague part scares the you-know-what out of me!


Now it cools and you anxiously await the POP! I anxiously await 5 POPS! actually. The wait is long, as this fruit is incredibly hot!


I steal a canning label from a World War 2 propaganda poster about canning and make it my own. After 60 years isn’t it public domain anyway? And voila! Jam!


Making jam was kind of like making pickles or dilly beans. Sterilizing, cooking for 10 minutes, cooling…….now that I have the hang of it, who knows?



p.s- if your jam is a little runny, add a bit of Sure Jell next time.


VIDEO! Rear Window Reflections- Food For Your Party

Dear Reader-

The food at your retro themed party is important. Make sure you have everything you need for a successful suarez.