Monday, 30 March 2015

Minions Cake

Today I had strict instructions to make a Minion Cake for my Smallest. Today he is eight and he designed th cake himself, down to the maltesers around the edge.

It is just a vanilla sponge with vanilla buttercream with white chocolate chips in and covered with fondant icing. The tiny minions wer difficult and fiddle because the black icing I was using wasn't setting so it dribbled a little but if you don't look too closely, it does a job.

Smallest didn't notice it at first and then loved it. It wasn't just what he wanted he said, it was much better. Praise indeed.

I made lots of little cup cakes, at the time I didn't know why but as I was putting the cake together it came to me. More minions, looking up at us.



Friday, 27 March 2015

$10 quilt heart

About 10 months ago, I joined a $10 Quilt class. For $10 (paid just once), I get to go to a lovely sewing shop and MrsSew gives me some bits of material and the knowledge to make one quilt square. As long as we finish the piece before the next session (a month), you get your next pieces of material free. Obviously I had to buy my main fabric first but I get to learn a different technique each month. BARGAIN.

This months proved to be tricky as it was part sewing and part origami (in my opinion anyway). I'm not completely happy with the results but at least I know how to do it now.

In order to make the hearts a little more 'rounded' we had to kind of push the fabric up and sew (this is all very new to me).

It's not the tidiest piece of sewing I have ever done but I rushed it as I need it for tomorrow and silly me left it till the last minute.

Here are all the pieces I've made so far:-

Each pattern came with a little story regarding the season or month we were in. TopLeft: I love the robins, though that was my first introduction to appliqué which I love but find challenging. TopMiddle: English paper piecing I found very relaxing as it was a lot of hand sewing but no-one told me we weren't supposed to sew through the cardboard so my stitched got ripped out a bit. TopRight: With the trees I was introduced to iron on sticky stuff (forgot the name). MIDDLE: these three were what I would call proper quilting as it is lots of squares sewn at different angles to get different effects. BottomLeft: should have been a Christmas Wreath but it appears I sewed it up slightly wrong, however the middle red bits are puffed up - more origami as I call it. BottomMiddle: More normal quilting techniques. And the BottomRight: my biggest headache.

I wonder what tomorrow's pattern will be? March is the month. A Hare? An Easter Egg? Snow? Rain? I will let you know.


Wednesday, 25 March 2015

The one where I left a fingerprint on my jug!

Today was my last pottery class of this session. Our intention was to finish the pots we had made each week.

Biscuit fired ready for glazing.

It was a six week course which meant we would have a different pot for each week (I missed one due to being on holiday). Week one I made a pinch pot which is not very good but it got us used to the clay and I may put my cotton wool pads in it. Week two we made a sushi dish, a baby dish and two little fish to put your chopsticks on. I don't eat sushi so mine will end up as a Malteser holder or a pin collector. Week three we made a funky mug and the last week I made a milk jug (we have milk bags here so they should fit perfectly in it).

It's very hard to glaze your pots when you can't really see what the colour is going to look like. I think most of mine are a bluey/green but I can't be sure.

My milk jug should be black and white (like a cow) and I painstakingly painted all the hearts black three times to ensure a good deep colour and then put the wax on before dipping it in Cream for ages. Hope it works because if I didn't dip it long enough it will be orange!

I put a glass bead in two of the dishes as this will melt and crackle to make a lovely finish in one corner.

I'm quite sure this one isn't red but a kind of blue one end and green the other!

We should be able to pick them up in a couple of weeks. In the meantime I have signed up for the next session which starts in April. Most of us from the same class have signed up so it will be nice to see the same people again.

I thoroughly enjoyed this course. Although I have done pottery before at night class when I was much younger, I love the creative process, the feel of the clay and find it all so very calming and relaxing. I always dreamed of having my own kiln and being an arty farty painter/potter/created. Ahhhhhhhhhhhhhh.


Woyww #303

Hey I may be late arriving in again but I am here, joining in with a host of desk hoppers beautifully display their productiveness via the great efforts of the main woman.

Well it's a bit bare due to the fact that I finished sewing the front of my quilt on Monday.

This is actually the back of my desk as I am lucky to be able to walk around my desks (yes plural, I have two now), means I can use several surfaces without the need to clear too much away. What can we see? A small pile of material squares (left overs from when the big squares were cut) which Ii need to take with me on Thursday for my class to see what we are going to do next. My glasses (normally stuck on top of my head as not really used to wearing them but can't sew successfully without them), a shoe box full of sewing essentials that I take to class, a broken mug full of knitting needles, glass of water and my sewing machine.

Okay, I have aerobics this morning followed by a shower, a drive to the lake and a pottery lesson where we will be glazing our pots we have made in the previous four/five weeks. How exciting. I will try and visit as many desks as I can. See ya later.

Monday, 23 March 2015

Quilt - sewed - tick

Today I finished sewing my quilt together. I have to say I am quite pleased with what I have accomplished considering its my first proper one.

I love the pattern and the way the different materials go together. I'm not sure what comes next. It could be another border, or wadding or the actual quilting part. We will see.

Next class is Thursday.


Saturday, 21 March 2015

Sewing Saturday

While all the boys watched football on the TV, I did a bit of sewing.

First I got very stressed trying to finish my $10 Quilt Square and had to abandon it after lots of unpicking.

Still need to round the edges and make them more into hearts but that might have to wait until my other quilt class on Thursday.

Undeterred by my terrible sewing, I continued with my Twister Quilt. I managed to finish sewing my last row of squares together and then started on sewing the rows. I sewed a couple of rows together. Just four more rows to do before Thursday.



Wednesday, 18 March 2015

Woyww #302

Yay, I made I back to What's on Your desk Wednesday if not a little later than everyone else.

I just popped up into the loft to take a photo. Oh dear, I never tidied it up before I left it a few days ago.

Scraps of material from my quilt, cutting mat, template and map of where the pieces go. My youngest was helping me place the squares in the right position at the weekend. I wanted to see if he could understand the patterning process and he really enjoyed it. I'll get him sewing one day, after all it was a man who won the Great British Sewing Bee.

There is more of my quilt here but for now I have two boys at home for March Break so I can't imagine there will be too much sewing.


Sunday, 15 March 2015

There's a Moose Loose aboot this Hoose

I offered to make a cake for a friend's daughter. Her name is Lucy and they call her Lucy Moose. She draws a cartoon style of a moose everywhere, so I took the drawing and made it into a cake.

She has a sense of humour so I added Moose Poo (to make her laugh).

This is two chocolate sponges with chocolate butter icing inside and on top. I used melted chocolate to make th antlers and her name and hardened it off before placing on the cake.

I hope I have done her lovely drawing a justice.


Recipe (more for when I need it again, but feel free to use it).

Oven 350*. Butter and flour 3x 8" pans

2.5 cups of all purpose flour (plain)

1/2 cup cocoa powder

4 teaspoons of baking powder

1/2 teaspoon salt

8oz unsalted butter

2 cups sugar

4 large eggs separated

2 teaspoons vanilla extract

1 cup milk


Saturday, 14 March 2015

Pinwheeling Popcorn

Due to the football being on this morning and Smallest having a friend round, I got to sew all morning. With my music blasting and a small pot of popcorn (courtesy of friends mum), I managed to finish cutting out my pinwheels and sewed together two more strips.

Now I can see why it was so important to place the colours in a pleasing manner. Loving it.



Thursday, 12 March 2015

Quilting Class No2

My second quilting class was today. I proudly took in my 36 squares, painstakingly stitched together and made four 6" borders and stitched them to my squares. At this point I thought it looked rather nice. Then we started cutting out squares within the squares and panic ensued. Nine cut squares later and I realised how beautiful this quilt was going to look. Out of nowhere came some pinwheel shapes.

It requird lots of numbering and checking and checking and checking yet again and then I sewed the first seven squares together.

.......and ironed the seams nicely. Then I cut out another seven, positioned and labelled them. WOW. That little lot took three hours, one cup of strong black coffee and a small banana. Phew.

Later in the evening I managed to sew the second seven and cut out another seven.

I am liking this. Apparently with all the bits left behind we can make either a smaller one with the same design in smaller pinwheels, or we can use it within the border of the main one. Then with the pieces left behind on the second one, we can make a teeny tiny one. How exciting.

There is a two week break now for my class but I have lots of sewing here at home to do in the meantime.




Wednesday, 11 March 2015

Dairy Pottery

Today was my last pottery session before we glaze all of our works of art in two weeks time. I made a milk jug (the type that holds the bags of milk that are so popular here in North America). I wanted to make mine into a cow but when I found a lovely little stamp with a heart on it, I knew I had to use it. I may glaze the jug black and white to infer the cowness of it.

We used the slab method for the majority of it and hand pulled a handle. This was hilarious!!

I love it and can't wait to glaze it and bring it home and use it.

We use two different milks in this house so I may have to make another one as I have signed up for the next lot of classes too. How exciting.


Woyww - twister

Hello, I hope it's okay to suddenly join in again when I have been away for soooo long.

Today I am linking with What's on your Workdesk Wednesday in order to show you my new craft. Quilting. This is a new thing for me (dabbled a bit before) but now I am enrolled in a class so I can learn properly.

So, my desk: my sewing machine, the Twister cutter (can't wait to see how this works), Martha Stewart Sewing book to guide me when I get lost, with my glasses on top as I am now struggling to read without them, cutting mat, metre stick, rulers and that fabulous piece of material in the middle is going to be my border. The rest of it you can see here.

It will be interesting to see how this evolves, in the meantime it is making me sew straighter and neater, which can only be a good thing.

Off I pop now to see how many of your desks I can catch up with. I've missed this.


Monday, 9 March 2015

3 week quilt and 5 weeks of Pottery

I have just joined a Quilting class for beginners. Bearing in mind I have only just learnt to sew, this is challenging.

Our first week consisted of cutting our fabrics (I chose them weeks ago). The fabrics are not ones I would normally choose, I think they are very grown up but I really like them.

My homework was to sew 36 squares together, press seams and cut out border and maybe sew if time permitted. I have come a bit unstuck with even cutting out the border so that will have to wait until Thursday. We then cut all the squares in a Twister shape and sew them back together!!!!

I have also started a pottery class. Five weeks, each week making a different pot. Not on a wheel, just using slabs or pinch pots. Now pottery I have done before, in fact I did it as a night class many moons ago for ages. My poor mum has pots everywhere in her house but I just have my piggy bank and a couple of book ends I made.

The first week we went I made a pinch pot with a lid (no idea what this will be used for).

Mines the one top right.

The second week we made a Sushi Dish (I don't eat sushi but I did like the shape of it. I even made a chopstick holder and a baby sushi dish.

The third week I was away and last week I made a mug. I was dubious about the mug because it was a strange shape but I was very happy with the outcome.

Looking forward to more sewing and potting this week.