Friday, 30 April 2010

matryoshka sewing kit!

i cannot resist russian doll sets
and went really crazy buying them
like they were going out of fashion a year or so ago
i have sold a few sets in my Etsy shops
but i also have quite a few sets who have sadly lost members of their families

poor Mama here has lost her littlest baby,
her other daughters are growing up and getting underfoot
what they all need is a vocation in life . . . .

Mama gets to be pin-cushion

big sister the spool keeper and
little sister is in charge of buttons!

no matryoshka were hurt to create this set and
they are very simply reverted to a stacking doll set

Mama and her girls are heading off to Etsy
to find a new craft room to live in

Wednesday, 28 April 2010

i've got pins and needles . . . .

i've been thinking about making this for AGES

today i had literally minutes to make something
so i gathered up my ingredients

and jumped in with both feet!

an orphaned russian doll
a scrap of fabric
some plain pins
some fancy pins
a styrofoam egg

open up your doll
cover the egg with the scrap of fabric
you want to pull the fabric tight - i used stretch velour
pin fabric to bottom of the egg
cut of excess fabric

pop the covered egg into the doll body
i didn't use glue as it was a perfect fit

load with a few pretty pins
and you're done!

this was so simple
i love her!

Monday, 26 April 2010

business cards :o)

i got a pack of 50 business cards using my own images just for the price of postage
you could choose 50 different designs if you wanted but i narrowed it down to about 20
these are some of my favourites :o)
because they were "free" they had a strip of advertising on them
so i trimmed it off and also rounded off the corners

i had meant to order the mini sized ones to fit in my new button box but must've ticked the wrong box but hey ho these fit perfectly in an Altoids tin !

they make me feel like a proper grown-up
"ooh let me give you my business card"

oh by the way they were from
super easy to order and edit
fast delivery
and they came with a 10% discount code
although i think the free for postage offer is still on

Wednesday, 21 April 2010

pincushion swap - what i sent

talk about great timing
the two parcels arrived on the same day
so now i know Jenny's has arrived too
i can show you what i made for her

i bought a set of plain cardboard boxes from Ikea last time we went and thought that one would be perfect to house the pincushion,
i decorated it with my button stamps and embossing powder

I made the pincushion from vintage embroidered linen.
I made a large suffolk puff - stuffed it - added a button - bound it tightly into four sections and then made a large covered button to cover the hole
at the bottom.

i think i will be making more of these covered buttons
i don't get on with the metal buttons with little teeth i just can't get them right so i found a cheaper and easier and upcycle-ier way
i will blog what i did soon :o)

the brief was to make and send a pincushion and a few crafty supplies
so i picked out a few vintage bits and bobs
added a button stamp kit
and of course some new pins!

i really enjoyed this swap

see what everyone else made/received

and thanks again to the lovely Claire Payne
for organising the swap and letting me play

Tuesday, 20 April 2010

pin cushion swap - received

here's what i received in my latest swap
my partner was Jenny - who has just had a baby :o)
check out her blog here

some really cute tiny hanging signs and a house button


the pincushion -
it is made of felt and very bright
i couldn't lose this one
not even in my mess of a workdesk!

cute basket shaped card of needles

and some lovely fabric - with a very vintage vibe :o)

thanks again Jenny for getting my parcel to me against the odds!
{read her blog to find out
what's been happening in her world}

and thanks to the lovely Claire.P for organising the pincushion swap :o)

Sunday, 18 April 2010

thrifty finds. . . .

i've found lots of lovely things in the last couple of weeks
the silhouette is a needlework kit
not started with a frame and all the threads too :o)

some very very funky cats eye shaped glasses
a very old school reading book of Annancy stories

i had a quick check to make sure it wasn't rascist as so
many books with black characters of this period are
before reading the first story to my son

i love the illustrations and the story

a bag of vintage stamps these were my favourites
i love space stamps

nice medallion - i guess you would've had it engraved

me in the "Aunty Thelma glasses"
my Aunty has always worn this style of glasses
so i had to get them!!!!
the lenses are sooooo strong!
i also found a vintage tea set one bowl short of complete
in a blue rose pattern very 50's
it had
6x cups/saucers
6x tea plates
6x larger plates
5x bowls
shame i have nowhere to display it or store it!!!


ahhh happy thrifting :o)

Thursday, 15 April 2010

the kindness of {virtual} strangers



yes it's a Habitat button box
just the right size for mini moo cards!

sent to me by the lovely Eirlys
who i only know virtually
via twitter and flickr

i'd been lusting after one of these button boxes for some time, Habitat were selling large ones,
big enough to use as actual button boxes

but i couldn't find them online and the nearest store
is in Exeter,
where i probably only go twice a year!

Eirlys very kindly offered to get me one next time she was going to her local Habitat, but she couldn't find any and then it was like a search for the Holy Grail everytime she went to Habitat :o) - anyway she bought a little pile of these small boxes and let me choose my colour, i had to have purple of course!

I have made so many friends online
including the lady whose mini moo card is on top of the pile,
she is in the States right now visiting family and friends,
and i'm missing her online presence and our funny little messenger chats
hope you're having a really great time Apryl :o)

Tuesday, 13 April 2010

simnel muffin recipe

i got asked by a few friends for a recipe for these muffins - to be honest i kind of make baking up as i go along but a made a second batch on sunday as we had family over so here's more or less what i did

3oz of soft brown sugar
1oz of white caster sugar
4oz of stork margarine
4oz self raising flour
2 medium free range eggs
1 cup full of raisons soaked in Disaronno Ameretto
mixed spice {to taste}
BIG block of golden marzipan
icing sugar
food colouring
mini choclate eggs


1: roll out your marzipan on a flat surface sprinkled with a little icing sugar, using a round cutter, cut out 12 discs of marzipan to decorate the tops of the muffins and 12 smaller discs to be baked in the cakes

2: next cream the sugars and margarine
{i use an ancient Kenwood mixer}

3: slowly mix in the eggs

4: sift and mix in the flour
add the mixed spice to taste

5: mix in the raisons by hand
save the liquor that didn't get soaked up

6: pre-heat your oven to whatever temp you
normally cook cupcakes/muffins

7: add a small spoonfull of mixture
to each muffin case smooth out a little

8: add smaller disc of marzipan
then another spoonfull of cake mixture

9: cook 'em!
not sure how long i cooked them for as i was busy chatting away!
when they are golden brown and spring back to touch
they are done :o)

10: leave them to cool awhile
then using the saved Ameretto paint the bottoms of the discs of marzipan and stick to muffin top
{he he he}
i painted the tops too
then popped 'em under a medium grill
till they were toasted golden brown.

11: again leave them to cool
then mix up some icing
add a bit of colouring - i used violet paste
add a little dollop in middle and add eggs then drizzle the icing around the eggs to give impression of a nest
add a little more colour and repeat

12: QUICK EAT THEM - before someone else does!!!

this recipe makes a dozen muffin sized cakes
hopefully this all makes sense
i am a marzipan addict so i make the marzipan tops quite thick - you may want to use less marzipan!

Sunday, 4 April 2010

HaPpY eAsTeR

"eeek i think we are dinner"

happy Easter to all my readers
hope you have a great day
and of course lots of lovely chocolate x