Sunday, 31 July 2011

What cake?

I am very much looking forward to my best friend's hen do next week. What could be better than spending time with the people I love most (well apart from the boys, who i also love but who will be at Alton Towers on the stag).

The hen has asked me to make a cake, which i am more than happy to do. Any excuse to bake! But i am left in a quandary and it is this: what cake should i make?

Do i make something safe that i think everyone will like? Do i go with the hen's favorite? Or do i bake the one i bake the best? Decisions decisions? What would you do?

Plus it has to be a cake that i can take on the train with me that won't get ruined (which may be a small feat in itself due to the amount of bits and bobs i need to take with me).

I think i might do a trial bake this week once i have decided on a recipe to make sure it's perfect. I'll let you know how i get on. Yay, cake and friends and cocktails, i can't think of anything better!

(to any of my friends that are ready this blog: do not expect a cake that looks anything like the one at the top of this post!)

Saturday, 30 July 2011

Matryoshka loveliness

Good morning lovely people!

I have the flat to myself this weekend as Lawrence is on a stag do. I am going to make the most of it by doing all the girlie things i don't get to do when he's about. I will shamelessly eat Ben and Jerrys, watch Sex and the City and generally wallow in my Pj's. I may even go clothes shopping. It's gonna be great.

I'm quite a girly girl, although i don't love Grease or Dirty Dancing and i have never watched Glee. I'm not a fan of that ultra girlieness that some girls have. I will never put a 'powered by fairy dust' sticker on my car (if i had a car that is) and don't even like Baileys! Although if you are a very girlie girl that cool too, it's just not my cup of tea.

Anyway, i wanted to bring to your attention a little collection of Matryoshkas (russian dolls) that i have put together. I love russian dolls and think that these items (all for sale on Etsy here) are lovely. What do you think? Do you like russian dolls? Are they quite a girlie thing to like? I think they probably are.

 Kawaii stickers by Beautiful Work here.

 Plush Cushion Babushka doll by Caroline Dulko here.

 'I love you' russian doll embroidery hoop by Jules Craft here.

 Russian doll mobile kit by The Little Tiny here.

 Matryoshka printable tank you card by Amy Perrotti here.

 Russian doll romper baby sun suit by The Measure here.

 Russian nesting dolls tea towel by Studio Vim here.

Russian doll vinyl wall decal by Munky Dory here.

Set of nine matryoshka buttons by Button This here.

Thursday, 28 July 2011


Check out this photo that i took at work. Four double yolks in one pan! (one unfortunately broke on the way to the pan). I promise this is real, i saw them being cracked and they are all genuine double-ers.

We use hundreds of eggs a week at work and i have only seen one double yolker in the year i have worked there. Then four in one go!

Not only that but it was also pure chance that we needed to cook four eggs at once. And that they weren't split over two orders. Weird.

Tuesday, 26 July 2011

Blackberry muffins and horror movies.

Not something that you would immediately put together. But that's how i have spent today.

Here are the blackberry and white chocolate muffins that i made this afternoon. I can't wait to try one as they look yummy. I kind of made the recipe up so am glad that they have come out well (when i say 'made up' i mean i found a muffin recipe and changing it slightly so i could stuff it full of blackberries and white chocolate, i'm not clever enough to make the whole thing up from scratch!).

I went blackberry picking again yesterday, hence the muffins. I love fruit picking and i especially love the fact that these blackberries are free. Free is always good. I have put the rest of the blackberries from yesterday in the freezer, this way it gives me a bit of time to think of other things to do with them or save them until i fancy making another blackberry and apple crumble. I like this idea it means i get to make (and eat) my favorite crumble lots. What would you make?

I have also spent this afternoon watching Saw 3. I am trying to work my way through all the Saw movies. I like horror movies but only in the day time when it's light outside. Because i am a scaredy cat.

I also can't wait till tea time (having just watched Saw 3 i should never want to eat again), but we are having crumble this evening and it's the first one so i can't wait! Mmmm crumble.

Monday, 25 July 2011

Yay, it's finished!

Good morning! It's lovely and sunny here today, i hope it is sunny where you are.

I have had a lovely weekend, we went and stayed with some friends and it was a lot of fun. I was feeling a little fragile yesterday though! However, today i am feeling full of beans and am going to be very productive i think.

Firstly, i have finished the bunting! A little late, but i am very pleased with it nevertheless. I haven't used all the ribbon or all the triangles so i think i will also make another line of bunting later on today. But here is the first line. Do you like it? I love the funny fruit faces that pop up on some of the triangles. Odd little faces.

I am also going to finish a very secret present today. I can't give the game away, but i will of course show you once it has been given to him/her/them. I know i keep talking about things i can't talk about, but i promise i will tell you all about them once i can.

I think i might also cook pork belly for tea. It's Lawrence's favorite (i quite like it too) but it takes ages to cook so i can only make it when i have a day off. Phew, lots to do. Right, i best get started....

Sunday, 24 July 2011

Robot Candy.

How cute are these coasters, made using vintage images?

Very very cute! You can find them for sale here.  They have loads of different ones, but these are my favorites.

Saturday, 23 July 2011


So, i sat and thought about what to make with my blackberries. I then went on the internet and googled some things to see what tickled my fancy...

What i came across was a lovely recipe for blackberry and apple jam, here.

I liked the fact that you sieved the fruit and therefore there are no pips or lumps on the finished jam. If you are fond of pips and lumps then this may not be the recipe for you.

It's an incredibly easy recipe to make, the only ingredient i had to buy was the cooking apples. It uses granulated sugar not preserving sugar as the apples contain enough pectin to set the jam.

So i set about making the jam. I used one and a half times what the recipe called for as i had so many blackberries. All was going well.

This was until after i sieved the fruit and added the sugar. I went to put it back on the hob and our oven decided this was the moment it was going to explode! Ok, that makes it sound a little more dramatic than it was, but there was a huge bang and smoke came out from under the work surface. I reckon this counts as an explosion. Even if it's a mini one.

This left me in a bit of a pickle. I had half finished jam and no hob. Luckily the owner of the lovely place i work said i could bring it in and use her oven so the jam was saved!

It has turned out really really well (suffering no ill effects of being put in the fridge overnight so i could take it into work). As i type this i have just finished a bagel covered in Bear and Bug blackberry and apple jam. We also had scones with cream and jam last night which went down very well. I will definitely be making more.

I also made two blackberry and apple crumbles, which are now in the freezer. One is very big and one is small. It's my absolute favorite crumble so i can't wait to tuck into that with some ice cream and custard. Yummy.

Tuesday, 19 July 2011

What to make?

So today i went for lunch with my dad, nothing out of the ordinary there. Except after lunch we went blackberry picking! Yup, you heard right, picking blackberries in July. Very strange.

And not just a few at that. Lots and lots of blackberries. I filled a very large tub to the brim and so did my dad. Plus there was lots left. This is now a very secret location, as we don't want anyone else to pick our blackberries. All i will tell you is that it is a car park and it has lots of blackberries!

So, the big question is......what shall i make? I reckon i have about 4lbs of fruit so i could make a lot of one thing or lots of different things. ummm...

1. a blackberry and apple pie
2. blackberry jam
3. blackberry crumble
4. blackberry vodka (my dad's idea)
5. just eat some with yogurt
6. mix some into condensed milk (also my dad's idea)

i'm sure there are also lots of other things, but those are my favorite. I'll let you know what i decide...

Happy Birthday!

Hello! I had a great weekend. And i think Lawrence had a lovely birthday, which is the most important thing. I hope you had an equally good weekend.

We went to a Japanese restaurant on Saturday night and had lots of sushi and noodles and it was all very tasty, i will definitely be going there again. Then we went to the pub, and after that it all gets a little bit hazy!

But Sunday morning a few bacon and egg sandwiches sorted us all out. Then, after all our guests had left, we spent the rest of the day watching movies on the sofa with the duvet. Which is the best sort of Sunday, don't you think?

Unfortunately the birthday bunting i had intended to make for Lawrence's birthday weekend was not ready in time. Time ran away with me and i only had time to cut all the pieces out. So i spent yesterday finishing it off. Well, nearly. I still need to get some ribbon and sew the pieces on but that won't take me too long to do.

I have used vintage tea towels to make it and i think so far it is looking pretty good. It is also reversible, one side with most of the patterns (which you can see in the pictures) and the other plain with a few spots.

They are so simple to make. I made a triangle template using some card. Drew around it onto the material and cut it out. Then pinned two pieces together (with the sides i wanted on the outside facing each other) and sewed two of the edges together. I then turned them right side out and will sew them onto some ribbon (once i have bought it). Blue ribbon i think.

I can't wait to get them finished and then work out where i'm going to put them. I reckon they can stay up even when it isn't a birthday. I hope you like them and will take some more pictures for you once they are finished.

Saturday, 16 July 2011

And a good slosh of ginger beer.

Good morning! I hope you are having a nice Saturday. I'm sat on my sofa wishing it was sunny, i always feel in a merrier mood when the sun is out. Today it is hiding and the rain is hitting the window here reminding me that i have to walk to work in a bit. boo.

However, after today i have three days off which will be lovely, and will mean that i can hopefully get on with lots of things. I will let you know what i get up to.

It's also Lawrence's birthday on Sunday and some of his friends are coming to stay. They are always good fun so after i have finished work today i will have a good weekend, even if it is raining.

Plus my ginger beer is ready! Woop. I tried a bit of it and it is delicious! I think i will make some more as i don't think these two bottles will last long! If you want to make some you can find the recipe here.

I can't believe how simple it is to make. I left it for three days which is about the right amount of time i would say. Plus i let the air out of the bottles about twice a day as they went really hard quicker than the recipe said. I also just put the ginger, honey and lemon straight in the bottle with the yeast and ginger rather han mix it together first, which didn't seem to make any difference.

I would say it's about 6% alcohol now, which is perfect for little me. Plus i'll have something i made myself to offer our guests when they arrive later on today! (as well as the home made flavoured vodka i made at Christmas).
Have a go, if you like ginger, you'll love this!

Wednesday, 13 July 2011

Snail mail.

So yesterday i said that i wanted to be productive and make something out of the playing cards i had bought. And i did.

In between cups of tea and chocolate biscuits i managed to make a number of cards with cute envelopes and also packs of envelopes on their own.

Here is a selection of the cards (with their own envelope). Each one is unique and carefully constructed (and also a lot of fun to make).

And here are the Envelopes. I have separated them into packs of five.

I think that i will list some in my etsy shop here. So check in a few days and hopefully they will be on there.

In the meantime here's a peak at them. What do you think? I like the idea of the cute envelope being sent in the post. I would like to get a letter that looked like that. I have used a number of different vintage sources to create the cards: books, playing cards, stamps and tickets, and other bits and bobs. I am very pleased with the result. I hope you like them too.

I also made some naughty ginger beer last night. I mentioned i would in a previous post. I now have to wait for a few days for the yeast to convert into alcohol but come Saturday i will be able to give it a try. It was so simple to make. I hope it's nice, i will keep you posted as to how it turns out.

Say hello to Niklas.

Good morning! Are you feeling crafty today? I am. I'm gonna be very productive and get lots of things done. Well, that's the plan anyway. I'll see how i get on.

Some of the little playing cards that i mentioned in a previous post that i'd bought have arrived so i'm going to think of something to so with them today. I'll let you know how i get on.

I have also finally managed to download photos of the christening present i was commissioned to make. I took photos of it on my phone and then couldn't work out how to get them onto my computer! (ended up emailing them to myself).

But i digress, a lovely lady who i used to work with asked me to make a toy for a little boy's christening present. He is half German and half Irish and she told me i could make him look however i wanted. It was such fun to make and she loved him which was good. The christening is not till August though so i won't know till then if the little boy and his parents love him. I hope they do.

So here's some photos of Niklas, i hope you like him (sorry for the poor quality of the photos, my phone is not the best).

He has his own little label full of information about his likes and dislikes and also a booklet with further care information etc.

If you would like a custom made creature, feel free to contact me and have a chat. I love making them i do.

Monday, 11 July 2011


Good morning! I hope you are having a nice Monday. I am, we're planning on heading off to the zoo in a bit which i am very much looking forward to.

Plus i have just had the best weekend. I went to a wedding and it was fab. You may already know this, but i have lots of wedding to go to this year. And as i have mentioned before, i have been making wedding presents for some of the couples whose weddings i am going to. This is one of those weddings.

Luckily i got their present ready just in time. We gave it to them yesterday and they loved it!

So here it is. I hope you like it.

This is when it was still a work in progress:

This is the finished quilt:

And this is it all wrapped up and ready to give to them!:

I would therefore like to say a big congratulations to the new Mr and Mrs Furlong and a big thank you for such a wonderful day!

Tuesday, 5 July 2011


I have a problem. And i really need to get it under control. I can't stop buying little bits and bobs on Etsy. I know i know, it a habit i should have under control but i can't help it. Just look at some of the cute things that i have found:

Beautiful vintage Whitman snap cards. I bought these. Aren't they just the cutest. Each one has a little rhyme about the character. What shall i make with them? I'll have to think of something good.

Playing cards have become a bit of a theme with me at the moment. I also love this deck of Animal Rummy from the 1950s (i have no idea how you play rummy but the illustrations are beautiful).

And also these Raggedy Ann cards from 1975.

My obsession with vintage children's books might just have met it's match!

Monday, 4 July 2011

It's sometimes nice to reminisce.

I hope you are having a nice Monday. And have had a lovely weekend. I have, it's been fab.

Yesterday me and Lawrence went shopping for wedding outfits which was very successful. Then we went back to my school for my ten year reunion. I cannot believe it's been ten years since i left school!

I went to a very nice school and they do look after us when it comes to reunions. They provided a marquee and a BBQ and then we all put in a little money for drinks etc. I wasn't sure i wanted to go but at the same time really wanted to go (if that makes any sense) and i'm really glad i did. I was strange but also lovely to see people who i had unfortunately lost touch with.

Have you been to a school reunion? Did you enjoy it? Bring on the 25 year catch up i say!