Tag: crafty

A Crafty Chai has moved!

Paper_Rose

So I finally got my act together & moved my little blog from Typepad to WordPress. My reasons for this are simple really – it’s cheaper to host it myself than through Typepad, plus I’m much more confident at using WordPress now compared to when I first started blogging. This time, I’m taking it to the next level by setting up Google Analytics & focusing more on SEO so that more people might happen to come across this little fellow. I’ve also joined a little site called Bloglovin, you may have heard of it! Follow my blog with Bloglovin and keep up to date with all my witterings.

Paper_Rose

I have a few tasks left to do, like updating links and images, and a few photos to take for the slider. Have patience! I’ll get there soon! I’ve also created a little Facebook page for my blog too so if you want to follow me on there too, that will certainly make me smile!

 

Crafty Resolutions 2012

Tea Cosy

Despite working less since July, I still haven’t managed to get enough craft in my life. So I’m setting myself some crafty resolutions. I plan to check back & update every month or so and hope that I can cross some of them off. Hopefully I’ll have them all crossed off by the end of 2012. So here goes…

1. Knit a pair of socks. I really want to do this. I can’t explain why but I have a real desire to make myself some warm & snugly socks. I’ve just got some DPN’s and plenty of wool so this will be my first project.

2. Knit myself a matching hat, scarf and gloves set. I have a real love of wool & this canCrafty Resolutions be seen in the variety of winter gloves, hats and scarves that I have. However, none of them match. This bothers me immensely! So I plan to knit my own. I’ve already got the wool but I imagine it’ll take me until next winter before I’ve completed them!

3. Knit myself a jumper. I am not particularly confident that my knitting skills are up to this but I want to give it a go. I know there are loads of patterns out there but if anyone has a recommendation of a plain jumper pattern, I’d love to have it.

4. Make Mollie Makes kits. I love Mollie Makes. I wait until I have some quiet time before I sit down & read it. I love the free kits but I’ve only ever made one – the phone cover, which I gave to my sister. I want to make them all! So my aim is to make one a month, maybe even two so that I can catch up on the backlog!

5. Scrapbooking. The garden WILL get a makeover this year, honest. I want to document the transformation by doing something I’ve never done before & that’s scrapbooking. Any tips will be gratefully received.

6. Write my own knitting pattern. There are so many amazing patterns out there but sometimes I struggle to find one that fits what I want to make so I’d like to make my own.

7. Make more silver jewellery. Out of the crafts I currently do, this is the one I do least. The main reason is that I’m a neat freak & can’t keep my silver making stuff out so I rarely get down to it. I don’t go to silver group every week because I can’t always afford it. But I need to make a more concerted effort!

8. Sew more. I love my sewing machine but I’m still a beginner so need to spend more time using it. I have a few ideas of items I’d like to make so I’d better get busy! I’ve also got a cool sewing kit that I’d like to complete. It’ll make some awesome owls that would look great on my desk!

9. Make candles. I got a kit for my birthday and haven’t used it yet. I know some lovely people who would like some candles so I need to get busy with this one asap.

Tea Cosy10. Bake healthier cakes. I recently had a cholesterol test. It’s slightly higher than it should be so I need to cut down on bad fats. Therefore I need to find healthy ways to have cakes & chocolates. There’s no way I’m cutting them out!

11. Get organised. I’m one of the most organised people I know. But when it comes to making things in time to give others, or awareness of how close holidays are, I seem to be completely lost. I need to start preparing for Christmas in the summer if I want to make all the presents, cards, cakes etc. And not leave them all to the last minute like I did this year…and the year before…and the year before that! Oops!

12. Make time for craft! I’m not too great at balancing my time. I’ll do all my work, tidy & clean the house before doing craft. Sometimes this doesn’t leave enough time to do craft. I should probably spend less time on Pinterest but I often see that as creative thinking time. I need to allocate time each week, no matter how little, to craft so that I can achieve these resolutions.

I am also doing the usual – eat less fatty stuff, eat more veg, get off my bum more; be more thrifty; sort the garden & finish off the little jobs in the house; learn from my mistakes etc etc. But most of all I want to do more craft because craft makes me happy and isn’t that worth spending time on? x

What are your resolutions? Are you having any crafty ones? I’d love to hear what they are.

Needles & Natter

Needles and Natter at Rosies Tea Room

Last week I popped into Rosie’s Tea Room in Abingdon. I’ve been a few times before. It has an excellent range of teas & a lovely atmosphere. I noticed a few signs about a ‘Needles & Natter’ group starting today at 9am. You could bring along any of your crafty projects & natter while you work. Fantastic! I made a note in my filofax & planned to attend.

Needles and Natter at Rosies Tea RoomNaturally I arrived late (a fall out of no longer being governed by a bell!) & was met with smiling faces & a table covered in material & wool. I knew straight away this was my kind of event! I sat down & got my knitting out. (my current project is my 2nd commission – a black headband for a friend similar to this one.) Out came the tea & we were all talking about our latest projects, Twitter, jobs etc as the sun came out. It was a lovely way to start the day & I will definitely be back next week, hopefully with a different project on the go x

Plums

Dropped Plum Cake

Dropped Plum CakeA lovely friend of mine recently gave me some plums. I’ve never used plums before so needed to search for a few recipes. I discovered a brilliant website called Allotment Growing Recipes.  Not only does it have loads of recipes but feedback from people who’ve used them & lots of answered questions.

The first recipe I picked was one for plum cake. This one seemed quite easy & I wanted to try baking something with wholemeal flour. The recipe was easy to follow & was looking really good. My oven is a bit tricky so it took an extra ten minutes to cook.

I took it out of the oven & was trying to take it out of the tin. It was coming out fine but the outside slid off & was heading down my arm. I freaked as I was worried that it would burn me (& I was in a bit of a rush I was running late for yoga & I wanted to give the cake to the person who had given me the plums!). The cake slid of the base of the tin & fell onto the top of the oven! Yes it was as comical as it sounds! But it tastes amazing! I can really recommend the recipe if you have a load of plums.

Esme Plum JamI had some plums left so wanted to have a go at making some plum jam. So I returned to the Allotment website & found this very easy plum jam recipe. I didn’t have the recommended weight of plums left so had to use my maths skills (!) to work out how much sugar to use with the just over 500g of plums I had. The recipe didn’t mention any type of pectin so I just cut up my plums, poured in the water & set to work. I’d forgotten to reduce the amount of water but I don’t think it’s made much difference. I also didn’t have any granulated sugar so used caster sugar instead. I haven’t tasted any on bread yet but it tasted fine when I was checking it had reached it’s setting point.

I love trying out new recipes. I used to think jam making was really difficult & required loads of expensive equipment but the recipes I’ve seen are really easy & work really well. And it shows how great the internet is as I’ve got all my recent recipes for free! Fab! x