Monday, 28 February 2011

One-Year-Blogaversary Giveaway!

Hi all!
A little delayed as my one-year blogging anniversary was actually on the 9th of February, but as some of you may have read, I was a little (ok a LOT) under the weather. But nothing that cant be remedied by blogging a bit later :)

So... I have been blogging for one year! Originally I had planned to blog my 200th post on the one-year blogaversary (is that a word? I dont care, I like it!) but sadly that also didnt work... However, this giveaway will work! And it's a cool one, or at least I think so... It has a bit of a story behind it though which might be nice to share. When I re-started the sewing, I needed projects and there was a girl at my old job who loved yoga and so I offered to make her a yoga bag. I found some really nice fabric, a great pattern, and I was all set. Lots of stuff happened in that time though and the bag actually didnt get made until I had changed jobs and lost touch with my colleague. But I enjoyed making it and it was one of the first items where I added my what later kind of became signature yoyo :)

To make a long story short (ok maybe not that long hihi), I have this brilliant yoga bag, made from the Nigella pattern by Amy Butler (click here for free download), that I would like to give away. I took some pics below, I dont have a yoga mat so had to stuff the bag with clothing. With an actual mat it will look straighter of course :)
This bag is completely lined and has three handy pockets in the front. The top does not close by the way, but that shouldnt limit the fun. Curious yet? Check this out:

What do you think? Do you like it? I think the fabric is very zen... The lining is dark blue to match the outer fabric, and the yoyo (not shown here) has the same colour scheme.

You must be wondering what you have to do to get this bag? Nothing much really :) All you need to do is...

Follow my blog and leave a comment saying so

Thats it! Isnt that easy? And great news for all those of you not in the UK, this giveaway is international! So no matter where you live, feel free to leave a comment and if you win I will send the bag out to you :)

Should you rreeeeaaalllly like the bag, you can get extra entries by:

Posting about this giveaway on your own blog - leave a comment to confirm
Facebooking and/or tweeting about this giveaway - leave a comment to confirm

So three chances for you to win this marvellous bag! The deadline for this is March 7th, so that gives you a whole week. And what better way to start the new month than entering a giveaway? Good luck everyone!

Sunday, 27 February 2011

An Award for Little Me?

A while back, one wonderfully lovely blogger on Krafty Kat, gave me the Stylish Blogger Award *happy blush*.

As this was indeed a while ago, I didnt do anything with it, but then last month I was awarded it again, this time to Newlyweds and the Old House! So this time I will definitely say thank you to Krafty Kat and Newlyweds and The Old House for giving me this award. In true Oscar fashion (it is the night for it after all), I want thank .... *grin* nah, I wont bore you with that hihi. I actually have all of you to thank you anyway for reading my blog :) I am very honoured that 109 people so far are keeping up with my craftings. So thank you everyone! *teary Oscar smile*

Of course (well, not sure if there is an 'of course' but in this case there is), there are some rules:

  • Thank and link back to the person that awarded you or me in this case. (done)
  • Share seven things about you. (OMG, 7??)
  • Pay it forward to 15 (or so) recently discovered bloggers (well I dont really know who was recently discovered, so lets change this as to 15 new blogs to me or ones that I just adore)
  • Contact those bloggers about the award (I will really try to do this...)
So let's begin... Oh my... 7 things... 7 random things? Really? 7 things that would interest you? Ok I'd better get started, I am beginning to feel like Julia Roberts in Pretty Woman, just rambling on... LOL. My 7 things to share are:
  1. I refer everything in my life to movies. I am obsessed with them! I didnt actually realised I did this until the bf pointed it out. Personally I dont mind, although I am very much aware of it now that it has been pointed out to me. If someone does something or says something, I will no doubt find a movie reference...
  2. Despite the great hype, beautiful costumes, and an all-star cast, I didnt actually like the move 'Alice in Wonderland' (yes the one with Johnny Depp) very much until he made the tiny dress for tiny Alice in the teapot. That one moment when he cuts the dress and checks the frills was so cute that it made the entire movie for me!
  3. I've lived in London for nearly 6 years, but thought I would even make it through the first year when I came here. It is definitely a very strange city.
  4. I LOVE food. I am very hobbit-like, though not (yet) in looks. I would travel around the world to just eat something in a specific country, and in fact I have done just that.
  5. I dont understand cricket and never will. A bat, a ball, and three sticks? Where is the fun in that? Plus everyone wears white, how confusing...
  6. One day, I want to own chickens.
  7. It's my birthday in three weeks, and I will turn 32. I still dont know how to drive or own my own house. How depressing...
Well that's all for my sharing this fine evening... as for the 15 blogs, well I decided to do a few less. Mostly because this award has been going around a bit and also because I dont want to give an award to just make up the number. The below blogs are blogs that I really enjoy and that you should also check out :) Most other blogs I find and read have been out there for a while already and most of them also have this award. So I hope you dont mind this little short cut. And now enough of the talking (well, typing), the winners of the lovely Stylish Blogger Award are:
Thank you all for entertaining us with your blogs! Please copy the image to your website to show off your award :)


And now to get ready for the real thing: the Oscars! Are you watching this year? Being in the UK, I'll probably have to watch the re-run tomorrow night as I have to work in the morning and I will be worth nothing if I stay up that late ;) But I can watch the red carpet bit I hope and see all the dresses *big smile*

I have a cake in the oven (recipe will follow), must go check...

Saturday, 26 February 2011

Knitting Needle Case

I'm back!!! OMG, It has been weeks since I felt this good! The first Saturday that I'm actually useful! *dances around happily* Of course my main objective for the weekend was to actually tidy our apartment as it was a disaster zone... With me not feeling well and the bf a little unmotivated to tidy his part, our stuff was EVERYWHERE! On top of that we had a minor washing machine incident (which luckily turned out to only be the power outlet so just using a different outlet for the time being) so we also have A TON of laundry to get through. So today I did 3 loads of laundry, vaccuumed, did the dishes (which in itself is already a miracle), went fruit&veg shopping, and tidied my part of the living room and bedroom. Yes you may think that's funny and it's not like we dont tidy each other's stuff... but only if it's general stuff like plates or so. Can you imagine the bf tidying my sewing area? That would have interesting outcome to say the least ;) And the same goes for his Warhammer stuff. Not only would I probably drop something, I would probably also make some very important tiny thingy disappear. So it's safer to just tidy our own stuff. Hihi...

As all is better now and the tissue use has majorly declined, I hope to be blogging loads again :) So sorry for the hiatus there, nearly 2 months! I cant believe it...

Anyway, I little while ago, I made my knitting needle case. I dont really knit a lot, mostly because it takes too long and I'm really not that good yet. But over the years I have gathered a few needles and they're just lying around. So when I found this fantastic fabric at Herstmonceux I knew that had to be my knitting needle case. (I actually forgot to blog about the fabric when I blogged all my other purchases there, woops!). I found this lovely shop where I found a ton of buttons, and I also found a FQ of this beige fabric with cats and wool on it. It was just perfect!

Isnt it just the cutest? I think it is perfect :) This is actually the case done already but I did want to post a decent picture showing the fabric.

Originally I wanted to add some black and purple on the inside, but I only had black and beige left and I am really trying not to buy any new fabric that I wont be using immediately. So I used black and beige instead which also works quite well. After some browing on, I found many tutorials, and I sort of combined them to get the look I wanted. I didnt need a huge case with lots of storage, especially since I have like 3 set of needles at the moment, and one of them is actually being used. So I just made a few pockets, thinking I can always add more later:

I used the entire FQ for the base, and lined it with beige. I then sewed on the pocket in black (also lined with beige) so it is quite thick on the bottom so that the needles wont peek through too much. Here you can see how many needls I have ;)

I left enough space on the top so this can be folded over the needles so they wont fall out when the case is upside-down (you never know, I am very clumsy). I added purple ribbons on each side to tie the case. I also still had to ribbon and it matches perfectly :)

This is the case rolled up. I think it looks really nice :) Yes, I could have rolled it a little nicer but this was a fairly quick project for a change which was great! I know this isnt much of a tutorial, but the idea in itself is very simple so maybe some of you can use it anyway.

Now all I have to do is actually improve my knitting and learn how to read a knitting pattern... But at least I'll have something to get me through the summer :) Knitting is great to carry around at medieval fairs, especially since they didnt really have a sewing machine yet back then!

Thursday, 17 February 2011

Unhealthy 2011 So Far

Wow it really has been a while... I had this wonderful project to post from a few weeks back and just havent gotten around to it yet. It seems that I am gaining followers while not posting! How amusing is that ;) I might ask the CSN people if I can do another giveaway as my 100 follower giveaway is still in the planning.

So why has there been such a hiatus you might wonder? Well, I was ill in January with the mystery dizziness. OMG that drove me up the wall! (I love this expression, so very un-British). I couldnt do anything!! During this time some changes happened at work and I'm still trying to figure out what is going to happen next. Nothing to be posting about on the www though but let's wait and see what happens. And now here I am... sick yet again... this time it is just a cold but it still left me out of the running for about a week. Luckily this time I could actually see straight so I've been working from home for nearly the whole week. Mountain of tissues and all, very unhygienic at work. Oh I took a picture, wanna see?

I took it for FB mainly but thought I could share it here too. This, my dears, is one day worth of tissues. Two boxes!!! And this wasnt even taken at the end of the day but more at about 4pm or so! I think I went through about 400 tissues during the whole day. It was insane... Most mothers among you will know how messy a runny nose can be, but since I'm not a mom I thought I would share ;)

As you might have noticed my 'busy craft life' is more like 'my busy life being sick' at the moment but I do hope to change that again soon. I have some ideas in the making and a girl at work is heavily pregnant and I am of course once again extremely late with making a gift (twin boys: crafty ideas welcome!)

So now I have sent my update out into world along with my box of tissues, I say good night and speak soon!

Sunday, 6 February 2011

Cupcake Weekend

Hello again :)
I had a really nice weekend, especially since it seemed to be all about cupcakes! I was supposed to go to the SFX Weekend as I got some free tickets, but the location was just too far away and it would have taken several hours to get there. Instead I spent Saturday doing some much needed grocery shopping and baking yummy cupcakes for the Buffy night scheduled for that evening with a quiz, food, and of course Buffy episodes. I'm part of the Buffy Meetup Group and even though I havent been in months, I really wanted to make an effort this time and bring something good. So I went onto Allrecipes and got this really cool recipe for Red Velvet Cupcakes. It was the first time I made cupcakes from scratch so it was a challenge! I also learned that buttermilk can be replaced by milk with vinegar :) The things we learn hihi... I added some pre-made Betty Crocker chocolate buttercream on top and some sprinkles. They sure looked great and the cupcake liners were very Buffy also:

There is a better picture floating around somewhere but I havent received it yet so I cant post it. I also made Banana Pecan Cupcakes (I just added some pecans to this recipe) but also no pics. They sure were yumm though and the Buffy group was very pleased. Well you didnt really think that I was going to eat 30 cupcakes on my own! I have some leftover still so I think the people at work will be pleased tomorrow also ;)

On Sunday I finally got to hang out with Lauren from Bookworm Eats Flower. We had been planning to meetup for cupcakes a long time ago, but then Christmas got in the way and my unforeseen sick leave also didnt help. But today we finally met! Of course lots of blogging was discussed and it was a blast :) She even gave me this great Amy Butler fabric:

Yes, it is pink but I'm sure I can make something nice out of it. Plus pink is starting to grow on me hihi... So check us out, enjoying our cupcakes:

We went to Bea's of Bloomsbury which I had never heard of before but it was sure a great place!

This was my Raspberry Vanilla Cupcake... it's pink! I'm starting to see a trend here... but it was sooo yummy! I dont usually like frosting, and even the frosting on my own cupcakes was meant for others. I removed it on mine hihi. But let me tell you, this was so good! Light and tasty, really yumm :)

Lauren had the Chocolate Praline Cupcake which also looked divine

Of course I couldnt only just have one cupcake so I ordered some more. This is the Baileys Vanilla Cupcake. Not bad but the frosting was really thick and not really to my liking. I ate this last which was a bit of a shame as the best one was not saved for last this time...

This was the piece de resistance:: Red Velvet Cupcake. I was in heaven. Sooo good! Words fail, honestly. And my poor homemade cupcakes just dissapear in comparison.

Lauren and her yummy brownie as she didnt want a second cupcake. She assured me that the brownie was also to die for though.

Oooh cupcakes! The Baileys one had sparkles which is why I was swooning ;) It just proves that looks isnt everything!

After the cupcakes we went to the Chinese New Year Festival in Trafalgar Square. Despite knowing that it would be busy, I had forgotten just how insane busy these things get here. So we had a quick stroll around the square and took some pics...

There was a whole show which we saw nothing of.

But this bottle is always cool. It is a permanent thing at Trafalgar Square but I always have to take a picture. Silly me...

Afterwards we walked to Covent Garden and then back home, where of course I promptly fell asleep on the sofa. All those cupcakes!

I will have a big day at work tomorrow with a lot of stressful issues climaxing this week if not tomorrow so a lovely cupcake weekend was exactly what I needed. For now, let's just watch a little more TV and lounge some more on the sofa. I hope you all had a wonderful weekend also!

Saturday, 5 February 2011

Cotton Sweater Makeover

Hi everyone and welcome to all my new followers :) I have actually surpassed 100 followers! *squeel* Thank you so much for following my blog and keeping interested in my busy craft endeavours (or so I hope at least hihi). I had a giveaway planned to celebrate the fact but I need to find the right thing to give away so it might take a few more days.

In the mean time, do you remember this top that I bought at one of my thrifting Saturdays?

Well, I finally had the chance to do something with it. This top is super comfy and 100% cotton and for only £2 it's a steal :) Sadly the print really put me off so that was the first to go. But after taking the print off I had no idea what to do with it. So there it sat in my pile of mendebles (is that a word even?) for months on end, until a received a black and white striped top from a girl at work. I just loved the fabric and knew I just had to incorporate that into this top somehow. The exact idea, however, was long off...

But in the end, months later, I finally knew what I wanted. Since I couldnt decide on a design to replace the front print, I just tossed that idea completely and instead added cuffs and a collar from said striped fabric. This is the result:

I added the cuffs by ruffling long strips of the fabric (after cutting the original striped top to bits) and folding them over. I just sewed these on top of the original sleeves which it easy if I want to remove them again. The only problem is that the hem is now no longer stretchy so I cant actually roll up my sleeves anymore but I dont want to redo it again. I used the leftovers for the collar, and added buttons on all the hem lines. I have so many buttons (freecycle rules!) so this was great fun.

The top is still comfy and I'm very pleased the way it looks :) Of course I had to make a matching yoyo hair accessory:

I used a tiny scrap of the striped fabric, and I still had this black pvc yoyo in my stash (which was the blackest one I could find so I chose this one) and I added a polka dot button. Remember these buttons I bought at Herstmonceux? I just love them but I dont actually dare to use them as I may run out... LOL

The whole look is quite cute and very Tim Burton, totally up my alley :) Another new top for about onyl a tad over £2, who can beat that?! So keep your eyes peeled for my future giveaway and more crafts to come :)
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