22 December 2013

Ana's Quilled Roses Gift Tags

Ana, my younger one, takes baby steps to becoming a businesswoman.
Her assignment of gift tags, for a friend of mine, all packed and ready to be sent.
Technique used: quilling (an art form that involves the use of strips of paper that are rolled, shaped, and glued together to create decorative designs)
Before the ribbons...
And after......
Not bad, eh?

15 December 2013

Recipe For A Lazy Sunday Afternoon

Recipe For A Lazy Sunday Afternoon

Warm sun, a swing, a book, a test-knit (Sousa's Neve shawl), a big bowl of popcorn.
Oh, yes! Oranges. How could I forget the oranges  :) 

21 November 2013

Yarn Techniques - I-cord Cast On

Learn something new everyday ........
In my adventures on Ravelry I've picked up new tips and techniques along the way that have enhanced each project immensely.
It often makes me marvel at the genius of the people who think them up and put it out there in the world for free for people like us to pick up and learn!!! A big thanks to you guys  :)

Here's the first one.....

The i-cord cast-on ...... gives such a lovely, firm, rolled edge to the shawl, great to hold the weight of a heavy piece. Tedious and time consuming but worth the effort.

I found a tutorial here at Whimsical Knitting Designs......
Used it for first time for the Autumn KAL shawl ....
This is what it looks like.
After the first row....
I love the technique and the rolled look it gives to the edge of the shawl.

I tried it in 2 ply lace earlier but it turned out too loopy so abandoned it in favour of a thicker 3 ply yarn.
This yarn was Chat Pelote et Cie eucalypt
After the first row....
Give it a try - you might like it!

03 October 2013

'Sweet' Gratification - Instantly

I have a sweet tooth - like you didn't realise it yet!!!
Rustle this up when you need your sugar kick NOW!

This was concocted by my girl - thankfully she, too, possesses a sweet tooth.......yeah, birds of a feather  :)  :)

Lay out four sugar cookies on a micro-proof plate, break up a couple of Mars bars over them, drizzle Nutella all over, zap in the micro for 20-30 seconds or till the chocolate bar melts.
Top with another layer of biscuits pressing down a little, drizzle some more Nutella, lick the spoon, top with marshmallows (pink and white only for the colour effect - go with all white if you like or all pink!!), zap again. 
Swirl the gooey 'mallows with a toothpick or a fork. 
Let cool a little - if you can - while your coffee gets made ...... bite away!!!!
Try it.


24 September 2013

Deconstructed Lemon Flan

Such a Paradox!
So you have a sweet tooth and you need your sugar kick and you want it to be healthy - such a paradox!!!!

.......... so what now?
This is what you do - you break it up .... you know 'deconstructed'....
You take the filling from the recipe here - "No-Bake Lemon Flan" -
-jump straight to the 'for the filling' bit,
-whip up your filling,
-pour it into a glass (or whatever),
-refrigerate to chill.

Meanwhile crumble a few oat/digestive biscuits roughly. 

Once set sprinkle the crumble on top. Done!! 
Did you cut the calories - not so sure  :)  :)  :)
On second thoughts you could just skip the topping. 
Yes? Nah!!!!!!
Go with this one - I am telling you.

Let me know how it turned out.

25 July 2013

Owl Amigurumi

Trying this post out as a trial from my phone - I think it worked!
(will have to go back and resize the picture though)

Just started on my first Amigurumi.
That's Hoot and Big Brother....
First time putting hook to yarn........loved making these - they were super-easy to make and are now in demand with my kids and their friends  :)  :)

Pattern: Owls Two Ways,
Yarn: Stash scraps,
Eyes and beak: felt and butons,
Ravelry projects: Hoot and Big Brother.
The stork brought in Hoot, the green guy on the right, first. Big Brother arrived the next day.

03 July 2013

Thukpa - A Big Bowl Of Joy on a Rainy Day!!!!!

T’was a cold, rainy day …. and a hot, comforting bowl of Thukpa was much needed...

Thukpa ... (or thuppa) ...... a lightly flavoured soup served over egg noodles and an assortment of vegetables. Warms your bones on a cold, wintry day.
It is supposed to have originated in Tibet with Yak meat being used for the stock.
I tasted this for the first time in a restaurant called Porky's in Gangtok, Sikkim. It was a cold, cold day with icy winds chilling our bones when we walked into this warm haven of comfort and ordered this BIG bowl of cheer.....and did I fall in love with it!!!!!!!
Here's my homegrown version of it that has evolved into it's present form based on the availability of ingredients.
You need to have all your ingredients ready and then all that's left is assembling it before serving.

These include: 
(for 4 people).....
- Chicken stock  about 1 1/2 litres. (Boil chicken with salt, crushed peppercorns, 1" piece of sliced ginger. Strain out the spices etc once done and pull out the bones to get your boneless shreds ready. Add lemon juice to the stock)
- cooked boneless chicken pieces - (from above), 
- boiled egg noodle - about 300 gms,
- an assortment of chopped sliced vegetables like cabbage, cucumber, spring onions.  
- carrots, french beans if you like - steam them lightly before serving. 
- chopped green chillies,
- grated ginger,
- chopped green coriander.

 In the process.....
In a deep bowl or a soup plate lay out the egg noodles, add the other vegetables and herbs according to taste, add the chicken pieces and finally the hot stock. 
Enjoy the meal!! Great for sore throats and colds and coughs!

The assortment.....
The stock poured over.......
 A hot bowl of cheer!!

21 June 2013

Two Seam Easy-Sew Clutch

Made this sewing project as an experiment - I have seen a lot of these on the net and wanted to try it out..
..... placemat repurposed as a clutch....I was waiting for the right mat to come along - yeah! bold and beautiful ... :)
Here's how I made it:
Folded the mat into thirds , sewed up two seams on two sides of one fold to make a pocket, added a magnet closure and it was done!! I back-stitched twice at the seam ends to reenforce them.
(For info: the fold for the flap was smaller than the fold for the pocket)

 Finished Size: 12" x 7"
The magnet closure -

I wanted to add a fancy button on top but decided against it because of the print.
Though at first I thought the print was too big and bold but now I think I can live with it..:)
Here's the before: (I had already scoured it down on the folds before taking this picture)
And the after:
Go ahead, make one - this is fantastic for instant gratification!!


09 June 2013

Flora n Fauna Shawl

A beautiful pattern for a lovely beaded shawl.
Pattern:   to be published soon
Designer: Elizabeth/AngelCatkins (on Ravelry)
My link:    Flora n Fauna ( Ravelry)
Yarn:        Vardhman
Each section gives a wonderful texture to the shawl with each representing a section of the designer’s garden - moss, brambles, foxgloves, fence posts and last but not the least and the one I LOVE, love, is dog’s paws, yes, paws!!!!
The last 'Paws' section adds just the right touch of whimsy to the shawl. I never thought I would have paws on a shawl of mine  :)

Loved testing this pattern.
This picture shows the real colour of the yarn .... 
Love the beads!!
Close-up of the beaded sections..

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