Wednesday, 23 April 2014

Rapunzel Birthday Cake

With the movie Tangled a firm favourite of my daughter, I wasn't surprised that when I posed the question "what cake would you like for you Birthday?" The answer was "Rapunzel!".

Daunted by the prospect of a doll cake, I scoured the web for inspiration. I had read that it is a good idea to make the cakes one or two days prior to when they are needed, as this helps firm them up, more stable for the stacking. I made the three base cakes the same, only adding a little different food colouring to each. The top cake I made in a smaller tin with no colouring. I then wrapped them in gladwrap (plastic wrap), and put them aside ready to be decorated the following day.

I wrapped Rapunzel in in glad wrap up to her waist, cut a small hole in the cakes then popped her in. I used the following buttercream icing.
This icing is rich and creamy, I added a little extra milk as I found it too stiff to spread. 

Time to start shaping the dress.

Then to decorate.
Well, for my first ever attempt at a properly decorated cake I'm quite happy. I kept it simple as I had no real idea what I was doing. I did have a problem trying to get the purple colour, next time a might try the gel colours that Ive read a bit about. The bottom was finished off with frexh bluebells from our garden.

Wednesday, 11 September 2013

Fabric teabags

After fiddling around with a few different styles, I settled on the most realistic teabag of all that I tried. I ended up deconstructing an extra large teapot bag and used that as my template. A teabag is just a long tube really. Once I had a bundle of the tubes, I moved over to the ironing board. I pinched in the bottoms, then with a hot iron, I firmly ironed over the folds. The next step is to decide how to fold over the tops. There are a number of ways of doing this (I will apologies in advance for my next explanation, I'm not up to speed on sewing terms and how to clearly explain what I have done!). I chose to fold the tops over (seppartly) to the inside, then I sewed some teabags along the entire top edge, adding in the cord as I went. With other bags, I tacked the two outer corners together, then a tack top center to attach the cord....Does that make sense!!?????
Again, please excuse more poor explanation, I am so new to both hand and machine sewing, I'm learning as I go!

For little people who understand that its more than just a cup of tea.

Friday, 23 August 2013

Walnut Shell Pincushions

On a wet winter day last year in June, I pulled out my collection of walnut shells and jar of felted balls. With no particular game in mind, I tipped everything out onto the floor and said "lets play!" The colours of the felt balls could lift any grey mood, so soft, bright and happy. As the kids started shoving balls of different colours and sizes into the walnut shells, we soon saw little creatures come to life. 

So what began as play turned into a project. Quite disgracefully, I never finished them. My idea was to make embroidery knots all over their wings, but I encountered a problem when attempting this, the knots pulled through their felted bodies. I tried everything to make the knots hold, I gave up exasperated. So they sit in my craft room, wistfully eying me every time I walk into the room. I must revisit this project again, they are too cute to continue ignoring!

It would take nothing to finish these little cuties, I just need a different approach!

Walnut Shell Pincushions

Wednesday, 21 August 2013

Sultana Boat traktatie - Party Treats

Sultana Boat's for my daughter to take to school on her 5th Birthday last year.

I purchased a bag of the individual boxes containing sultanas and wrapped them up in three different patterned paper. I highly recommend measuring and cutting the paper so they perfectly fit the boxes. The extra effort measuring makes the final wrapped box so much neater. Though the flags would be easy to make with a toothpick and decorative tape, I bought these and just added the sail. Using a needle, I made a little hole into the wrapped boxes so it was easier to push the sail through.


Sultana Boat traktatie - Party treat

Sunday, 18 August 2013

DIY Crayons

Don't know what to do with all those broken crayons?!

Get a silicon oven proof mold. Remove any existing paper from the crayons then break them up into really little pieces. Fill the molds, slightly over filling them. Place on a normal baking tray (this will make getting the mold out of the oven much easier) in a moderate oven and bake for around ±10min. Once melted, carefully remove from the oven and let cool before popping them out of the mold. Then voilĂ , new usable crayons for the kids!

Thursday, 15 August 2013

Smarties Birthday Cake

With my husband away on location for work, my son's first day of school and his Birthday all falling within days of each other, I decided I just couldn't face doing the elaborate Lighting McQueen cake that was requested. Instead, I found a few images of smarties cakes and asked the little man to choose one. This is how my version turned out.

I used this icing recipe, which I highly recommend.
Two bags of mini kit kat's and these are actually m&m's. Smarties are more pastel in colour, which would also look beautiful, but I was after a stronger, vibrant look.

This was a wonderfully easy cake to make and it just looks so colourful and happy. Maybe I'll try Lighting McQueen next year : )

Pom Pom cupcake traktatie - party treats

Two days ago was my sons first day of school, a pretty big occasion. Yesterday was his 4th Birthday... its been a pretty big week for him. I think having his Birthday at school so soon has helped ease him into the first days of school really well.

I had been keen to start making the Pom Poms, but after I'd started, wondered what I'd gotten myself into. Fortunately for me, my parents were visiting from Australia, mum took charge and we (or more mum) Pom Pommed away over a few evenings until they were completed.

My little man was happy, the kids were all thrilled (and very happy with the treat hiding in the bottom) and I had some lovely feedback from many of the parents. Success!