Friday, November 26, 2010

Past Project Friday

Every Friday I will be posting some sort of crafty project that I have completed in the past.  It could be anything from baking, to sewing, needlecrafts, art, decorating, etc.

Vintage Wedding Cake

This is a wedding cake that I made this past summer for Kate, a very dear friend of mine.


Kate was one of those rare, wonderful clients who just told me to "Go for it!" and come up with whatever my little heart desired.  The nice part is that Kate and I have very similar tastes, follow many of the same blogs, fabric designers, etc., so I know that if I created something that I loved, she was bound to love it too.



And she did :)

Tuesday, November 23, 2010


 At least that's how I felt when I glanced at my google reader after being out for the count these past couple of days.  It's amazing how fast life keeps going when you take a sick day.  

I knew it was just a matter of time until our household caught the lovely stomach bug that has been making it's way around playgroup.  Luckily we're all back on our feet just in time to start moving into our new home tomorrow!  So sadly, no crafting as of lately since all of my fabric and supplies have been packed away. 

And now I'm off to bake some pumpkin bread - because I just figure that will be one less canned good I'll have to pack!

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Past Project Friday

Every Friday I will be posting some sort of crafty project that I have completed in the past.  It could be anything from baking, to sewing, needlecrafts, art, decorating, etc.

I know it's not Friday yet - but hey, with my busy toddler, I have to post when I have the time! 

Gingerbread House

So this is the very first gingerbread house that I ever made - 3 years ago back in 2007.  Ever since we were little, my sister and I would make something similar to a gingerbread house; my dad built us each a wooden house base which we would cover in frosting and graham crackers and then decorate with candy.  It was always the kick-off to the holiday season for us, spending hours and hours working on these houses while we listened to Christmas music.  When we were finished, we would set them on the dining room buffet and they would give off a wonderful sugary smell for the whole season.

Gingerbread House

Once I started cake decorating, I felt that I should take it up a notch and actually bake and construct my own house out of actual gingerbread.  The house went up relatively quickly (with the help of a free pattern I found online) and was much easier to put together than I thought it would be - I don't think there was even any swearing involved!

Gingerbread House

I actually had so much fun making this that I ended up building two of them the next year - one for my parents house and one for mine.  The unfortunate part is that one of my cats has quite a sweet tooth and ended up licking off all of the "snow" that covered the ground and the roof.

Hopefully I'll have some pictures to show you later in the season once I make this year's gingerbread house.  I've got to make up for last year when I didn't make a darn thing - but I blame the then 4 month old baby who refused to sleep.

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Vote, Vote, Vote!

Time for a shameful plug for myself....
Phoebe's nursery has been nominated for Ohdeedoh's Small Kids, Big Color contest.

 Please take a few minutes and vote - thank you!

Sunday, November 14, 2010

What I'm working on when I should be packing...


Hillary's book is just too darn amazing to be packed away just yet.  We're on a pretty tight budget here, so unfortunately I can't buy every beautiful craft book that comes out.  After one glance, I knew that this one was a keeper.  I seriously plan on making every single project in here.


These two girls were made using the Tag-a-Long Doll pattern, which was super simple and a great introduction to doll making.


Even though they'll be living in different homes, I'm sure they'll get to play together often since one will be staying here with us, and one will be going to Phoebe's best friend EB.  Phoebe and EB are only 10 days apart and have been playing together since they were only 3 months old.  I think all best friends need matching best friend dolls.


The dolls came together pretty quick, but getting these girls to stand up straight and take a simple photo took forever!

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Past Project Friday

Every Friday I will be posting some sort of crafty project that I have completed in the past.  It could be anything from baking, to sewing, needlecrafts, art, decorating, etc.


This was my first crafting project after having Phoebe.  And I don't mean that I got home from the hospital and jumped on the sewing machine - I probably went a good three months without making a darn thing.  This book was on my to-do list of things to finish before the baby arrives, but I just got too big and too tired to do much of anything near the end. 

I wish I could take credit for the amazing idea, but I took my inspiration from here.



It took me about a day to make, in between feedings and naps; but it would have taken me a heck of a lot longer if grandma and grandpa weren't there to fawn all over the baby.



Phoebe loved looking at this book from a very early age, and still does.  She has certain little things that she likes to point out on all of the different pages - bunnies, ducks, flowers, etc.


And hopefully it will jump start her love of fabric :)

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

More about piecrust

Apple pies baked in muffin tins
I am super snooty when it comes to pie crust.  I'm a huge dessert lover if there ever was one, but I will turn down anything made with a store-bought crust.  I've been brought up on the homemade stuff, and I was told that my great-grandmother made the best pies ever - mouth watering fruit fillings, meringue piled miles high, flaky crusts made out of real lard...

Sadly, my great-grandmother was well into her eighties when I came around and wasn't making pies anymore.  However my own mother carried on this tradition and still uses great-grandma's recipe, although substituting Crisco for the lard.

Spinach-Feta Quiche
Spinach-Feta Quiche
I started making pies with my mother very early on; she would make and roll out the dough, while I mixed up the filling.  While we worked she would tell me stories of great-grandma's pies and all of the secrets to a good crust.

Handle the dough as little as possible, keep all of your ingredients as cold as can be, don't worry if it tears, but above all things - don't be scared!  Many people shy away from making their own because they feel that it's too complicated or takes too much time, but in reality, there's only five ingredients and it only takes about five extra minutes.  Sure, there's a lot of practice involved, but the end result is well worth it.

Apple Pie
Apple Pie; pre-oven
So who wants the recipe...... yes?

Great-Grandma's Pie Crust - makes 3 crusts
3 cups flour
1 1/4 cup Crisco (use the name brand stuff)
1 egg - beaten
1 Tablespoon vinegar
5 Tablespoons ice water

In a large bowl, cut the flour into the Crisco with a pastry cutter.  In a small bowl beat the egg, then add the vinegar and ice water.  Pour the egg mixture into the flour mixture and stir until just combined.  Divide the dough into three disks, wrap and refrigerate before use.

Rhubarb hand pie
Rhubarb Hand Pies
*A couple extra tips - only roll the dough out once, use lots of flour, and if it tears, just piece it back together.  I've made some super ugly pie crusts in my day, but re-rolling the dough will take away all of the flakiness.

Mini peach pies
Mini Peach Pies; pre-oven
Alrighty folks, we've got two huge pie holidays coming up, and I hope everyone will give it a shot at least once!

Stepping off my soapbox now.

Sunday, November 7, 2010

When our crafty powers combine....

Living in Michigan is not something that I typically brag about....  I mean, I don't think that anyone has ever said "Man, I wish that I lived it Michigan - what an awesome place!"  But I was pretty darn excited when Rae of Made by Rae, announced the first ever SE Michigan Crafters Meetup that took place last week.  

It was hosted by Rae herself, who's blog I've been following for quite a long time, so she's pretty much like a celebrity to me; and Karen of Pattern's by Figgy, who creates some simply fantastic patterns - my favorite being the Tee for Two shirt.  I had briefly met both of them at Maker Faire Detroit last summer, so it was great to see them again.

There was a fantastic turnout of about 25 sewers, quilters, knitters, crocheters, and other crafters.  Rae actually had to close the guest list because the room wouldn't hold anyone else!  It was held in the youth room of Rae's church, which was a great space.  It had cozy couches for the needlecrafters, lots of tables for the sewing machines, and a pool table and ping pong table for our cutting mats - perfect!  Even a nice kitchen area for the tons of snacks that everyone brought.

What made the evening even more fantastic is that my best friend and fellow crafter Lisa, of What Lisa Made, was able to drive up from Toledo.  We only see each other about once a month, so it's always a good time when we get together.  Not to mention that we were toddler-free for once!

While we did end up talking most of the night away with Rae, Karen, and all of the other incredibly talented crafters (lots of sewing revolution talk), I am amazed that I actually got quite a bit accomplished.  Phoebe got a new Tee for Two shirt, and a pair of flannel Quick-Change Trousers.

Sorry about the bad photos - we had shots that morning and weren't in the best mood to be photographed :(

All in all - awesome evening!  Can't wait for the next meetup!
To see more photos of the meetup (including ones of moi), go here...

Thursday, November 4, 2010

Past Project Friday

Every Friday I will be posting some sort of crafty project that I have completed in the past.  It could be anything from baking, to sewing, needlecrafts, art, decorating, etc.


There's been a lot of quilting posts going on here lately, so I figured I'd change it up a bit with some cupcakes.

Floral cupcakes for 9 year old's birthday party

These were made about two or three years ago for a nine year old girl's birthday. 


I believe that the mom basically just told me "cupcakes with flowers", and kind of let me go crazy.  Oh, how I love the clients that let go of all control and trust that you'll come up with something fantastic.  They don't come along very often.


Piping bags

All of these were hand piped using an Italian meringue buttercream.  

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Blogger's Quilt Festival

Not too much crafting has been going on here lately thanks to packing, a very clingy toddler, and a particularly nasty cold I've been fighting.  Today I was feeling better enough to drag myself out of bed and cut out a pattern for a shirt that I'm working on, but that's about as far as I've gotten.

While going through my huge list of blogs that I have yet to catch up on, I was reminded by multiple posts that the Blogger's Quilt Festival is coming to an end, and if I'm going to join in the fun it had better be now!

Completed Heather Ross Quilt

This quilt is titled "Heather Ross, Squared" and is one of the very first quilts that I made, once again using solely fabric from Heather Ross' first fabric line "Lightening Bugs and Other Mysteries".  I think this might be my favorite fabric line of all time, and I really wanted to show off the amazing prints.

Quilted Heather Ross

If I remember correctly, this pattern is called "Four Square", and is made up of 8", 4", and 2" squares, separated by 1" sashing.  I used up a ton of my HR stash by doing some major fussy cutting for the 2" squares, but I completely love how it turned out.  I ended up quilting it in an all over, loop-di-loop pattern - my first time doing free-motion quilting!

Heather Ross Quilt - Completed!

I even entered this quilt in my first (and so far, only) quilt show!  I didn't win any prizes, but it was a lot of fun and a great feeling to see it hanging up there with the quilts of all those other talented ladies, and I got some great feedback from the judges.

See my quilt?!
There it is!

Thanks for letting me share!  Click on the link below to see all of the other wonderful entries in the festival (I think there are over 500 of them!).  And a huge thanks to Amy for the genius idea, and organizing the whole shindig!