Wednesday, 29 June 2011
Whilst I was laid up last week, I did a spot of online shopping at Lark.
I found some lovely birdy jars...
some red polka dotted lids (I am envisioning some Christmas treats in jars)....
some blue polka dotted lids (just because)....
and some fun polka dotted doileys.
I think I will be prepared when the summer fruit is in season.
Sunday, 26 June 2011
First up this week are the Chewy Spice Cookies. These are crisp on the outside and chewy on the inside, and smell divine when they are baking.
125 g butter, at room temperature
1 cup light brown sugar
1/2 cup sugar, plus 1/4 cup additional for rolling
1/2 cup golden syrup
2 tablespoons vegetable oil
2 cups plain flour
1 teaspoon bicarb soda
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1 teaspoon mixed spice
1/2 teaspoon sea salt
Heat oven to 160 degrees C. Put butter, brown sugar, and 1/2 cup sugar in bowl of electric mixer. Mix on medium speed until smooth (approx 2-3 minutes). Mix in eggs one at a time, and then add golden syrup and oil. Gradually mix in flour, bicarb, salt and spices. Cover dough with wrap and place in freezer for 10-15 minutes. Roll dough into balls, and then roll balls into sugar to coat. Place on trays lined with baking paper, and bake for approximately 15 minutes. Place cookies on wire rack to cool. (makes 24 cookies).
Next Sarah made up a batch of Chocolate Chip Muffins.This recipe is one of our favourites and is often used. They are satisfying muffins but aren't too sweet.
Friday, 24 June 2011
As I haven't been able to do much this week, I have spent some time spring cleaning our blog.
You will notice I have added a FAQ page under our Blog Banner, and have also edited most of our other pages.
I also managed to re-format our sponsors buttons using a helpful tutorial I found at Hello Flower. If anyone has any tips on how to format the sponsors in two columns I would be most grateful!
As I don't have any photos to share, I thought I would do a little round up of what is inspiring me this week (found via Pinterest):
|Free Matryoska Card Set|
|Caramel and Sea Salt Topped Shortbread|
Wednesday, 22 June 2011
High school is certainly more technology based these days. Laptops, Graphics Calculators, Computers etc all make learning easier (not to mention more expensive for parents!). USB Flash drives are a common booklist item and they can be easily lost/misplaced as the kids go around school. One way of making them easier to locate in the school backpack or pencil case, is by creating a brightly coloured lanyard to attach them to.
My husband is often going to conferences and always gives me the items he picks up while he is there - he knows we love to re-purpose in our crafting! A lanyard or key fob can be easily made by using the hardware on an existing lanyard. (They can also be purchased cheaply from stores such as Office Works).
What you need:
- existing lanyard
- twill tape (approx 1" wide)
- decorative ribbon
- sewing machine
I removed the hardware from the existing lanyard (i.e. swivel clip), and then stitched the ribbon tape in place. You can make them any size you want - either a lanyard to wear around your neck or a smaller key fob size.
They are perfect for holding a USB flash drive, keys, or ID card.
You can find the ribbon at Ribbons Galore. Sarah wants to make some more of these in the school holidays - they are a great teen craft.
Sunday, 19 June 2011
Do you like the waxed paper with strawberries? I found this at Tokyu Hands in Tokyo. I haven't seen printed waxed paper before - trust the Japanese to make even the most functional things look lovely. The cute Mushroom Cup came from Typo.
Sarah's favourite spread is Nutella. We ran out yesterday so Sarah found a recipe to make her own (I love how my girl thinks!). She made up a batch and it tastes delicious. You can find the recipe she used at Oh Nuts.
Saturday, 18 June 2011
Sarah and I had a Mother/Daughter sewing session this afternoon and made up some Heat Packs. Now we are finally getting some winter weather, these will be put to good use soon. It is a great project for beginner sewers as they are quick to whip up. We used left over fabric from our flannel pajamas as the flannel will make an extra cosy heat bag. We made up a few extra ones for gifts.
- Fold the piece of ribbon in half and position it 5 cm from the corner on one of the long sides of quilting cotton, and baste in place. Place the two rectangles of quilting cotton with the right sides together. Stitch around the rectangle using a 1 cm seam allowance, leaving a 5 cm gap on one of the short sides. Clip the corners of the bag. Turn the bag right side out. Use a chopstick or turning tool to poke out the corners. Press the bag.
- Use a funnel to fill the bag with 500 g wheat, and 2 tablespoons of dried lavender. Use a ladder stitch to hand stitch the opening closed.
- If giving as a gift, be sure to include the heating instructions:
I have made these with both wheat (available from pet food aisle of the supermarket - readily available in Australia) and uncooked long grain rice. You can also use lupins, barley, buckwheat hulls.
I added lavender for a nice fragrance. You could also add some essential oils, or spices such as cinnamon or cloves.
The little ribbon tag is purely for decoration.
Wednesday, 15 June 2011
Today I scanned a few of the patterns and then printed them out on cardstock to make some cards. They will be the perfect cards to have in my stash! Now I just have to come up with some sewing related verses to add on the inside. Any ideas?
These cards will go perfectly with gifts wrapped in pattern tissue.
Tuesday, 14 June 2011
Stitch magazine wanted the runner made up in more earthy tones to fit with their issue theme so it was fun to remake it in the chocolate colourway.
I purchased the red Moda lamour fabric from Ladybug Quilt Shop. The Ladybug Quilt Shop is having a
Monday, 13 June 2011
While the stamps were out, I also stamped some shipping tags. Thanks to a sweet friend who gave me heaps of old sewing patterns, I have plenty of pattern tissue for gift wrapping. It works really well with some Japanese masking tape.
Sunday, 12 June 2011
I spent a few hours this week on my scrap quilt made from the Butterfly Block.
I have calculated that I need to make 270 blocks - so far I have made 28 - I think it is going to be a long term project.
Saturday, 11 June 2011
Carrot Cakes with Cream Cheese Icing
For the cupcakes
100g light muscovado Sugar (I used brown sugar0
175 ml of sunflower oil
2 large eggs
225 g plain flour
3/4 tsp bicarb soda
1 tsp cinnamon
pinch of salt
zest of 1/2 lemon
zest of 1/2 orange
2 medium carrots grated
scant 1/2 cup walnuts chopped (I omitted the walnuts - my family don't like nuts).
12-cup muffin pan lined with 12 cupcake cases
for the icing
125g cream cheese
250g icing sugar (confectioner's sugar), sieved
1-2 tsp of lime juice
12 walut halves
Preheat the oven to 200 C. Beat sugar and oil together, then add the eggs one at a time. Add flour, baking bicarb soda, cinnamon, salt and zests, then fold in carrots and chopped walnuts. Spoon into the cupcake cases in the muffin tin and bake for 20 mins. Cool on a rack.
Beat the cream cheese until soft, then beat in the icing sugar, then squeeze in the lime juice. Spread on the icing and place a walnut half in the centre of each cupcake.
Sarah and I have been doing some sewing today - will be back tomorrow to show you what we have been up to!
Monday, 6 June 2011
I had a look through my stash for suitable material, and found an offcut of sheer curtain fabric which was perfect - it is easy to see what is in inside and it dries quickly. The wash bag was made using a rectangle of curtain fabric measuring 15" x 36" and a 15" zip. The zip was sewn onto the short ends first, and then the sides were sewn up using an overlocker/serger as the curtain fabric frays easily.
Of course it needed a bit of embellishment so I added an appliquéd patch of a washing machine and a tag with washing symbols. Unfortunately the linen had the selvedge missing so I can't identify it but it was a piece I picked up in Japan in 2010. I love the retro appliances.
The laundry is now all done, and the school uniforms ironed for the week ahead. It is a long weekend here, so hope to spend the next few hours in the sewing room (a lot more fun that laundry!)
Wednesday, 1 June 2011
Almond Cream Slice
1/2 cup cream (thickened or whipping cream)
1/2 cup castor sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla essence
1 cup self raising flour
1/3 cup castor sugar
1/4 cup cream
1 tablespoon plain flour
1 cup flaked almonds
Grease a 25 x 30 cm swiss roll pan, line base with baking paper.
Combine cream, sugar, essence and eggs in a bowl and whisk until combined. Whisk in flour. Spread mixture into prepared pan and bake in moderate oven (160 deg C) for 15 minutes.
Spread with topping, bake further 15 minutes or until golden brown.
Melt butter in saucepan, stir in sugar, cream, and flour. Stir constantly over heat until mixture boils and thickens. Gently stir in almonds.
Edit: The slice has a cakey texture.
- Having the whole collection of DS Quilts Picnics and Fairgrounds (After stalking Spotlight for the past 2 weeks for the Australian only prints, I was so pleased to find them at Joondalup today).
- Working on a new scarf in a lovely wool and soy blend
- A new Book to read from the library
- Practising my circular quilting, using a pattern from Fresh Quilting
It is rainy and overcast here today. I have had fun playing with my new external camera flash - it makes all the difference!
Life . is . Good.