Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Eureka!!! This year, Christmas will be Ours!!!!

What's this?
I can't believe my eyes
I must be dreaming
Wake up, Alexz, this isn't fair
What's this?
What's this? What's this?





Okay, you are probably wondering for real, what this is!  Cheesy

First, let me warn you that this is going to be INCREDIBLY IMAGE HEAVY. Just warning you. Sorry.

I went to Disneyland for my first wedding anniversary. It was a lifelong dream come true- I went specifically to see the Haunted Mansion Holiday where they completely redo the Haunted Mansion attraction with The Nightmare Before Christmas decor. (My favorite movie of all time and what inspired me to start my art.) The ride is made to look like Jack crashed into the mansion and took it over with his idea of Christmas. I also saw the Tim Burton exhibit while there (my lifelong hero) so when I came home, my head was reeling with ideas. I felt just like Jack! I had discovered a new world with brilliant imagery and pastimes and people. I was just so incredibly inspired and intrigued and ready to burst with ideas.

Upon my return home, just like Jack, I knew I needed to share all my wonderful experiences with my tiny town and bring them some of the magic I got to experience!

I started off just decorationg the inside of my house as a tribute to the Holiday Haunted Mansion by combining my Halloween and gothic decorations with my Christmas Decorations. I redid my entire living room and put away all items that were unrelated. I mean, everything was replaced. Nothing was left out unless it fit that theme.


(Ignore the empty frames-waiting on wedding prints i the mail!)












While in Disneyland, I saw birdcages in a shop with bone arms coming out and loved them. I made my own version for my living room. Smiley


After the inside was covered (there is more, but I will spare you) I decorated the outside- we live in an auto-shop so I don't have a yard or anything cool to decorate and cover. Just a planter and a store front wall. So I had to get creative with my tiny space and once again, I combined my Halloween decorations and Christmas decorations. Tombstones and candy canes and a big tree. Perfect!




But of course that was not enough. Ohhhh nnoooo. That is when I busted out the big guns: my Pop.

If you saw my wedding post from last year, you learned that my Pop is absolutley amazing. I mean, beyond amazing. Worthy of building movie sets and masterpieces, and I am not just saying that because he is my Pop. This post will prove this.

We set forth to build a Jack and Zero- that was my plan and desire all along from the moment I saw Jack in Disneyland. And...we did.

I just want to give proper credit where it is due first of all- my Pop is almost fully responsible for this all. I just helped design and brainstorm and sew mostly. But my Pop is the true artist behind this.

We started with just Jack. We had a ton of plans, but we decided it would be better to just see what happened and go one project at a time. We completed him last weekend. And I am in love with Jack more-so than ever, now.


Jack stands is somewhere around 12 feet long. If he was standing up straight he would be taller! He is huge! For comparison, here is my husband standing below him. Kevin is over 6 feet tall.


And my hand in his:


Here is kind of a basic rundown:

-Started with wire and steel to make his base. Some of the pieces and joints are welded together, some are besn and shaped.
-PVC pipe was used for the neck, arms and legs.
-Body is cardboard and tape.
-Head is carved and sanded from styrofoam.

This part was all his doing after we both figured out the measurements and layout. He is built to scale of how tall he would be if he were to really visit our world! I was very insistent that we keep this as accurate as possible. Luckily, I am this way because I inherited from my father. He became more obsessive over the details than me in the end! Next came the sewing.

I just kind of winged all of that like I always do. It was really easy actually. I put some black stitching around the sleeves to give that extra Nightmare touch, as if Sally herself sewed his suit up.



My dad carved his hands from wood 2X4 scrap piece, as well as each tooth. The teeth were whittled down from the wood pieces with a point at the top of each one to be shoved into Jack's mouth. We worked together, and my mom even jumped in and helped sew, so it was quite the family affair. By the time we finished him, it was already late in the month, so we decided to scrap Zero. Until a couple days later when my dad informed me he was making him too.





I thought we were done after this. I was tired and had a lot of work to finish up and thought Jack was plenty.

That said, Zero is all on my him. He was kind of a Christmas gift to me. Awesome, right? I know...I am so lucky. If you flash back to my wedding, my gift from my Pop was a giant Mad Hatter's hat sculpture! This time I got Zero from him! He made him in a day.




Zero is hanging from the roof in a way that he dangles and hovers right near Jack. His nose lights up at night via a hidden plug in near the end of tail. My husband and I have been adding presents and lights each day as we find stuff and we have been getting a lot of stoppers. It has seriously just been a blast!



I am so thankful to have such wonderful parents- my Pop for jumping right into the project and helping my dream come to life, my mom for helping us and helping me sew when I was behind on my work, and my husband for letting me do whatever I want to our place!


Sorry for such a gigantic post with so much explanation and so many pictures. But I hope you enjoyed it! Thanks for looking and Scary Christmas!