Thursday, 26 February 2015

Oscar Party 2015

Hi everyone!
Fabulising February has taken a back seat at the moment, I was just too tired this weekend to create anything new... Must be the weather or something as everyone is saying the same! I might just have to create something in March to make up for it :)

But the time of year has come again to celebrate the Oscars. I have only seen a few of the movies nominated for anything this year (well that's pretty much the same every year tbh) but somehow there was much less of a hype to it this year than normally. I can't quite put my finger to it but it just wasn't the same. Coming up with a menu also wasn't easy let me tell you. All my usual websites didn't have any suggestions whatsoever, but in the end we had a lovely meal that didn't even take that much prep! Now there's a change... So let me show you, the Oscar Party of 2015!

I had the usual decorations up of course... I forgot to take a picture of the Oscar statues, doh!

As I'd only started the (minimal but still needed) prep when I got home from work, we skipped the red carpet and went straight to the show. I'll have to catch up on the red carpet though as I love seeing all the dresses. It was a bit tricky with the food, and the ballot, and the bingo going on at the same time! Let me show you the food I made for the nominees for Best Picture:

The Theory of Everything - blini with caviar (the cheap stuff), and chorizo (because you know, it has everything). This one was so difficult so we just diverted to our usual option. Very yummy though!

American Sniper - Texas Caviar. As the main character is a proud Texan, I had to find a recipe that was the same. This was amazing! I had the leftovers yesterday, it's really really good!

Selma - Southern Broccoli Tomato Salad. MLK loved his greens apparently, so I tweaked this recipe (left out the cheese and the dressing) as a side. It was gorgeous!

Boyhood - Pizza Hawai with BBQ sauce. In the movie they appear to go for pizza etc a lot, so this seemed just perfect, especially with the added BBQ sauce.

This is where the light got turned off so the pics are terrible but you get the idea... 

Birdman - Panseared NY Strip with Garlic Butter Sauce Onions. No chicken for this movie, but as it plays in NY, the bf cooked this lovely steak :)

Whiplash - South Style Lima Beans. Another southern dish as jazz is from the south. Apparently so are lima beans, but guess what? They don't sell those here! Or so we found out after hours of shopping... So we opted for butter beans instead which also worked very well.

The Imitation Game - Potato-Celeriac Cakes. The celeriac was left out, but these were really nice! Loved the nutmeg addition :) And the bf saved the day by telling me to add some flour to make it stick together more, it worked like a charm.

The Grand Budapest Hotel - Chocolate Eclairs and Custard Slices. I shamefully admit that I didn't prep this at all and had to go out and BUY dessert. I've never bought dessert for an Oscar party. But making choux pastry in the last minute when I've never made it before just wasn't something I wanted to attempt. And the bf looked everywhere for a Religieuse, but again no luck. These were still very good though :)

I managed to spectacularly lose not only the Oscar Bingo (my square came up at the second to last award!) but also the Oscar ballot. Can you believe I only had 4 points out of 24? Shocking... Must prepare better next year. But as always it was great fun, and I just love how this became a tradition!

Tuesday, 17 February 2015

Fabulising February - A Small Hiatus

Good morning everyone!
I haven't posted a Fabulising February in a while actually... I had so many plans! These plans actually included having a couple of sewing weekends to make stuff as during the week life just gets in the way (you know, things like work and exercise and possibly sleep). But I haven't forgotten yet, I may just have to extend it a little though. 

Just to give you an update, I did start another project. It was a vest made out of a sweater. It had a good start but then I tried felting on it and it just looked awful. So I wore it to my last race to keep warm and then just dumped it in the charity box. No piccies I'm afraid, I'll spare you those ;)

As for the weekends, I flew out to visit my family so that was one weekend where I couldn't make anything, and this weekend we're having visitors so I'm not sure exactly how much I will be making then either. And I've run out of already-finished projects! Oops... Having this silly cold didn't help either I have to admit. 

On the plus side, I did make a killer Valentine's Day dinner. Yes, another no-sew weekend as I spent most of the day preparing for this and the next day cleaning the kitchen LOL. But it was wonderful!

I made prawns in mango-basil sauce, heart-shaped potatoes from the oven, lobster (yes really, my first lobster!) and Minnie's chocolate pie. It was delish :)

The rest of the in-between time I spent registering for yet more races. OMG I am so out of shape and I have to run a half-marathon in 6 weeks and I have yet to start. Not a great plan... I really need to get off my butt and start training for this! But the races I've signed up for are all 5K with a fun twist so that should be great fun :) There is one next month which is a 5K that includes a picnic, can't go wrong with that! Then there is the Color Run in June which is always fun, and the Race for Life in July. That's a 10K but it's going to be in my Cinderella dress again, yay! AND, registration isn't open yet, but I'm planning on doing the Sumo Run, 5K in a Sumo suit. It sounds hilarious :) Please 'like' my Facebook page for more updates, I would love to have some more likes!

I do have a pile of items to fabulise so I'm hoping I can get some sewing time in soon. Fingers crossed!

Thursday, 12 February 2015

Fabulising February - Swimming Towel

Hello again everyone!
It's been a few days... I was visiting family and then I got this really annoying cold so I haven't sewn a lot these past few days. I did make a quick and easy project in finally having a swimming towel :)

Some of you may remember that I made a wet bag last June for my swim suit. At the time I added a shower curtain on the inside as per the blogland recommendations. NOT a great idea... it still leaked through! 

This was the wet bag in question. I still love the print :)

So I took the bag apart again, removed the shower curtain and just sewed in a normal plastic bag. One of the shop ones, not the supermarket ones. And now it's so much better! Plus it meant that the bag is now smooth and not as bubbly as shown in the picture. It still meant I was dragging along my very boring towel though... it's only a small little thing, but it's not like I need a beach towel in the pool really. I still had some of this mermaid fabric left, so I just added some strips to the towel as a border on each side, and it matched :)

Check it out! I was never a fan of this towel, but now that it matches the bag, I feel very stylish.

This was made before I fixed my sewing machine so the stitching is not great, but it's only for me so I don't mind too much. I also made a cute little pouch out of some leftover vinyl to carry my coins for the locker. Originally I wanted to use the fabric for this as well, but at least now I can see how many I have left. I don't quite know why I chose to stitch the coin purse with purple thread, but I did add a blue button so it matched the rest of the lot. 

I have another swimming project to share with you guys but it will have to wait until next month as it's not a fabulising one. I hope to be rid of my cold soon so I can finish the rest of this month's projects!

Friday, 6 February 2015

Fabulising February - Going Crazy with Duct Tape

Hello everyone,
And so Fabulising February continues! As this is also a bit of a stashbuster month, I wanted to use up all my duct tape that I'd bought in the US on various trips. I've had it for ages and hardly ever used it.
Well, time to change that! I made some great items, and best of all this beauty:

One of the girls at work bought some new shoes and gave me the box. Seriously, I get loads of this stuff as everyone in the office knows I can do something with it hihi...  

I only ever made this tube card holder the the tape and while it was a great one, the edges curled a bit and it didn't last as long as the fabric ones I made. 

The box in question. Square and ugly, but very useful!

Enter Duct Tape. Instead of painting the box which would have taken a long time and smelled a lot (it's freezing out!), I decided to cover the box in purple duct tape. I chose the purple over one with a design because I had the most left of this one and I wanted to add some design myself.

I bought these foam adhesive letters in Tiger for only £1, they were perfect for this project!

At first I added the letters on the top, but then I thought 'how am I going to recognise this box in my closet if the top has lettering but nothing else does?' Ok apart from the colour... In any case, it seemed a bit impractical.

So I added the lettering to the front of the box, which made much more sense. :)

I added the things I use for running, only special items such as leg warmers, bandanas, and hats. Yes, this could be the event box really ;)

And found the perfect space in my closet for it. See how the lettering makes more sense here? I love my new box! It will save me so much time in finding all the stuff I need. 

I still had some tape left, so I used this plastic container from M&S to fabulise as well.

I used up my bat duct tape here, it was an oddly shaped container so it's not as nice and even as the box it, but it's still cool. This is my achievement jar now, you know where you put in notes whenever you've accomplished something in the year. Rather than finding and painting/decorating a glass jar, this one was right on hand :)

I also had another shoe box that I covered. I finished both the purple and the spider tape on this one. It's to store my card making supplies.

But I'm still the proudest of my Running Box. It's only a box, but I used stuff I had on hand and it fits my needs exactly. I just love being able to 'fabulise' stuff :)

Wednesday, 4 February 2015

Fabulising February - Elegant Drawstring Bag

Hi everyone!
And so fabulising February continues! :) 
A few years ago, my friend gave me a purple top as a present. The top was lovely but the material was just... well, let's just say it was not for me. As it was a present, I didn't want to give it to charity, so I made this cute little drawstring bag out of it :) The print was lovely and quite elegant I think so this project was perfect for it! Sadly I didn't photograph the top before I cut it up, but you can kind of get the idea from the final result.For this bag, I used the front print of the top and also a bit of the sleeves.

I cut out the front main print, and a matching rectangular piece from the back and sewed it together.

I used the sleeve design to create the ribbon casing for the bag closure. I just had to slide it over the bag and sew it up as it was the perfect loop for this project.

I then added a wide purple ribbon through the casing and voila! The baggie is done :) I didn't singe the edge of the ribbon as I wanted this zigzag cut and unfortunately you can see the sealant way too much, but I might still adjust that later.

I can now carry my small projects through town in this elegant drawstring bag :) I've already put in some wool to test it here.

Another fabulous project done! :) Stay tuned for more!

Monday, 2 February 2015

Fabulising February - Scissor Buttons

Hi everyone!
It's the start of Fabulising February! One day late but I had to show you the pictures of my run after all... I did this a couple of years ago and it really forced me to finish some projects and actually blog about them too :) Plus I just love the word 'fabulising' so why not use it more often? It surely beats 'upcycling' or 'pimping'...

So let's start off with an easy project. This year I don't only have clothes but also some things that may be unexpected but have an amazing result. Like these buttons for example. A number of years ago, I bought some scissor buttons and I loved them. 

They were the elegant old fashioned type scissors with the curly handles. And they were only 50p each which was quite good. I loved them :) Then, at a show, I bought one other scissor button and the others were forgotten...

You maybe remember my Enormous Craft Bag where I used that button? The silver highlight just made such a difference, that the other ones were not interesting at all to me anymore.

See the difference? But as no one just throws away a super cute button like this, I suddenly had an idea. And yes, it actually took me this long to come up with that LOL

I borrowed some of the bf's hobby paint and painted the buttons! He even helped me pick out which colour would work best :) I now LOVE these buttons and already have a project to use at least one of them. Again, the silver highlight just made all the difference.

So I'd say that this year's Fabulising February has started off with a bang :) Keep checking for more fabulous posts this month!

Sunday, 1 February 2015

Running - Winter Run 2015

Hi everyone!
Today was the big day, it was the revealing of the Elsa dress! I've still not quite recovered from my knee injury at the Christmas Run, but I've registered for all these runs and with such an amazing outfit, how could I not participate? So I got up early this morning... it was cold and difficult, but so much fun at the same time!

At least I looked fabulous :) and there were lots of people kind enough to take a piccie of my Elsa dress so I have something other than selfies LOL

There was some great entertainment, there were free polar bear hugs (great after any race!) and such funny signs that were just perfect for Elsa ;)

After spending some time in the warmup area, I was all ready to get started. Nearly at the start line!

We got to run along a fantastic route, all along Embankment to the Tower, and back along St Paul's. I got some really lovely shots :) I couldn't use my phone as the app+music+camera would have just killed it, so I brought my small camera along and kept in my running belt to use when needed.

 Of course I needed the obligatory mid-run selfie hihi

When we went past the Tower I really choked up for a second. There is normally so much traffic here and now there was hardly anyone that was not a runner! And yes, it may be silly to have that reaction here, but as am not running the London Marathon anytime soon, just go with it.

As I slowly headed towards the finish line (still a few K away), I saw these guys on the other side of the road. They must have been in the final wave, and they looked amazing! Warm and amazing that is. I just had to take a piccie!

One 1K to go, and I saw this couple. They were running hand-in-hand, it was just so cute!! 

The finish is in sight! Yes, it's the blue arrow that I added to the picture as it's really quite small at this point still. I tried to take a selfie which went completely wrong and possibly caused me to miss the official photographer at the finish line but hey... we'll see what happens. 

Having finally crossed the finish line and gotten my shiny new SNOWFLAKE (!!!) medal, my phone died. Perfect timing... Runner lady to the rescue who kindly took this piccie with my camera. (ignore the straps of the top, I didnt notice at the time and am trying hard not to now hihi). I did it!! I finished the Winter Run 10K!

I had to get some piccies with the St Bernard too of course. Left is the one before the race, right the one after. I just love events :)

These ladies were the best! They were manning the A-line in the bag drop area and when I walked in, they all applauded!! I was so touched! :) It was the perfect ending! Thank you so much ladies, you're the best! :)

So even though it was freezing, and my knee started to seriously complain at about 7K (ok, before also but then it was still manageable), it was a great run and super fun. 

I really wanted to have a hot choccie (they really need someone to hand out cookies at the finish line!) but the queues in Pret were so long that I just went home, had a long and hot shower, and spent the rest of the afternoon defrosting on the sofa with girly movies. Maybe running in summer is a better plan after all, hihi... And remember, if you feel generous and want to make a donation to the MS Society, please visit my Justgiving Page.

So that was the great unveiling of the Elsa running outfit, which will be used again in a month's time as my Zumba teacher is doing a Disney event. Score! Until then, no further runs are planned, the next one is at the end of March... But it's February and you know what that means: Fabulising February is just around the corner :) Come back tomorrow for some awesome projects!
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