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Monday, 12 May 2014

FOX EMBROIDERY - REPUROSE AN OLD HANDBAG

I have become slightly addicted to foxes recently....and its not like I can escape it either.. Foxes are everywhere at the moment. It seems to be a real fashion trend.
I can't say I'm surprised, look at 'em??! stinkin' cute



Le Fox Necklace by Laura Johnson
Laura explains the concept behind the necklace - "red foxes are cunning strategists. They keep calm under pressure and can figure out how to use their surroundings to their benefit by thinking outside the box. Wear this necklace to promote quick wit, control, transformation, and practicality".

I totally get you, Mr. Le Fox!


 Mini Citizen Co has this adorable, hand printed onesie of a sleeping fox. Go check them out on Etsy.




 Anthropologie has brought the fox in to the house with this gorgeous, quirky print fox pillow.

I decided to give one of my old favourites a foxy makeover.


I found a cute picture of a fox that I liked and re-drew the image on a piece of paper. Then, I took a piece of carbon duplicate paper and placed it between the bag and the image. I traced the image (pretty hard) on to the bag so that the carbon paper would print it on. This gave me the perfect outline to stitch with.






I chose pinks as my colour pallet. I wanted it to be a little bit girly.









Im pretty happy with the outcome and now the bag doesn't live in the cupboard anymore!

What can you re-fashion from your closet?





Sunday, 4 May 2014

MINECRAFT BIRTHDAY PARTY




I say it every year. I'm not doing another party. I'm not going overboard this year. It's not happening. It's too stressful. Then, there's the "please momma" and I give in.....every time.

Last year it was Sonic the Hedgehog. This year it's Minecraft.

I don't know about you but I find the Minecraft merchandise to be really expensive for all it is. I mean, some of the stuff is just cubicraft, right? But it looks the part. And someone loves it.....so what can you do....

Off I went searching for something different. Something that would blow his little mind when he saw it. Then, as if by magic, I found Bubskiworks Designs on Etsy and she had the most amazing looking Minecraft inspired cube 3d invites.



I know some of you out there are thinking to yourself, why didn't she just figure out how to do them herself?? After all crafting is just "lovingly borrowing from others" right??? Well, you know what? There are some things that you're good at in life and there are some things that you would rather leave to someone who knows better. In this case, Monica from Bubskiworks is my hero!!

I sent her a message and within a day she had responded with the printable file and everything. That's what makes Etsy such a fantastic website. I was able to find something amazing, have it customized and still remain true to my vision of a handmade Mindcraft theme.

The evening was spent cutting out the printout on the white side of a pack of shiny cardstock we had lying around after Christmas. Folding them with a metal ruler helped to keep the straight lines where they should be.

How gorgerous are these?







This was his reaction face the next morning.


ALRIGHT THEN....Step one done. Invites ready and sent out to friends. Next on the to do list: Party Bags.

I liked the look of these guys on Pinterest as the Steve head was included.



I've changed jobs recently and now I work for a Eco-Friendly catering disposable company called Green Man. Making a kraft brown bag a GREAT starting point for the party bags. And completely accessible.

We lovingly borrowed the image for the Steve head from this site

Here's were I come in to my element. You can see from past posts on character inspired projects, I got this covered....






Our artistic weapon of choice for handmade party favours were perler / hama beads

Finally, the cake.

****Confession time*******

After the battle between myself and my equally perfectionist husband. We had agreed last year to tone down or get a professional to make the cake. As this is what he wanted:



Just a little flashback to last years Sonic Birthday Post Steve did a terrific job with Sonic on the cake and the makeshift cutter made from a Coke can *beaming with pride for my hubby on last years efforts*. However, the reality was that we were up 'til the crack of dawn getting everything ready as it took us completely inexperienced cake decorators an EPIC AGE to finish. This was the first time we had both ever worked with Regal Icing. Despite the odds being stacked against us, I think the finished product was great. And so did the birthday boy.....and that's all that matters.

FYI - if you are looking for a professionally made version of this cake (for 10 kids) you're looking in the region of £60-£80 (and to be honest, I don't know if that would include all of the details that you might want)

Back to the drawing board.

After a little peer pressure from my sis and mum.....we then decided to try and tackle this behemoth ourselves.








I cannot take any credit for this cake at all. Hubby baked, decorated, designed and measured the entire thing himself. All I did was make tea and coffee and keep Theo out of the kitchen until it was finished.

Quick recap with funds :

£6.00 for custom designed invites IS THAT NOT AMAZING?!?!?!?!
£1.00 for cardstock
£5.00 for 15 brown party bags
Hama / Perler bead - left over from other projects
£15.00 for small packs of Regal Icing in 6 colours and the square cutter.

Total: £27.00 for cake decor and party bags.

I cannot recommend Monica enough for her invitations. She is super quick, friendly and so easy to work with. Go and see her Etsy Shop


Thursday, 9 January 2014

MY NEW YEAR'S RESOLUTION - FAMILY EATING SIAN'S PLAN REVIEW

This is a Sponsored post written by me on behalf of Sian’s Plan for SocialSpark. All opinions are 100% mine.

I've had to budget for food for a long time now. Seems like if you want to buy garbage, it's much much easier to stay within budget than if you want to eat healthy. A pack of biscuits can be as low as 30p but you couldn't buy a pack of fruit or vegetables for that price. What's up with that???

 

Anyhow, when I first saw Sian's Plan http://siansplan.com/ I thought; "this is good, but it'll be a pain in the butt to use". I don't think I could have been more wrong.

 

First of all, let's talk price: £3.99 a month for a year's subscription or £5.99 per month. Let me tell you now, it's worth it for the hassle that this site SAVES you! She's even offering 25% off the quarterly plan until January 31st. Just enter JANPLAN at the checkout. That's 3 months for £20....

 

You sign up, go through the recipes (you can even search by ingredients - amazing) and pick which ones you want to cook for the week. Sian even colour codes them for you (from the site)

 

Red day recipes are main meals under 35 minutes and provide 4 portions. They use healthy cooking methods and healthy ingredients.

 

Green day recipes encourage you to use leftovers. This saves you money and reduce food waste. All green day recipes can be made using Sian's Store Cupboard ingredients but are designed to be flexible so you can throw in any leftovers you have. Like red day recipes, they are under 35 minutes and provide 4 portions.

 

Blue day recipes tend to take longer than 45 minutes (eg. Lasagne, Stews) and make at least 8 portions. So on a blue day you cook double what you need. This gives you a day off from cooking (white day).

 

Some days we can't or don't want to cook. There's nothing wrong with that. On a white day you may reheat a blue day meal or even eat out

 

 I picked 4 reds and 1 green for the week.

 

Spicy Sweet Potato Wedges

Quick Spaghetti Bolognese

Chicken Fajita Wraps

Creamy Garlic and Chili Chicken with Rice

Winter Vegeatable Lasagna

 

Once you've picked your recipes, it asks you if you want to "generate your grocery list". OMG, this is the best feature I have ever seen!!! You can pick which supermarket you want the list to be sent to (for instance, I picked Tesco) and there it was. I mean everything on the ingredients list of every recipe I had in my meal plan....there....easy as that.

 

All of the things that I needed,  in order, in the search section one by one  of my shopping basket. This way I could pick exactly what size, quantity etc of everything I needed.

 

Side note - the total came to less than £50 - Yay me!

 

I cannot emphasize enough how EASY this process was. Really worth every penny for the monthly subscription.

 

So, I started with the spaghetti bolognese. It was simple to make, much cheaper than the jar sauce I would normally get and I had tons left to freeze.

 

Now, I have to tell you, I'm really not a food blogger. I don't know how to stage a photo to make the food look as appealing as possible and to be honest, I did forget to take pics alot of the time....

 

I loving "borrowed" this image of the spaghetti bolognese from the Sian's Plan site.

 

I promise, mine did not look as good as this!! :-)

 

 

 

 

Chicken Fajitas are always a favorite in our house and we always go for the packet spice pack so I was slightly worried when I saw the DIY version recipe.

 

Quorn "chicken style" pieces vegetarian subtitution

 

proper chicken...

 

I may or may not have had a 3rd...

 

They were amazing!!! I'm never going to buy a packet mix again!! Im a convert...DIY all the way :-)

 

I could have taken a million pictures and described every recipe but that's not the point. The point is, what Sian has done with this site and the plan is truly amazing. The thought put in to the recipes, the ease of use and the healthy factor is the best I have seen. You can really use your money to its full potential in your food budget. More importantly, my fridge and cupboards were filled with fruits and vegetables and we were happy and full.

 

I'm making the wedges as a Friday treat tomorrow night and the lasagna for the weekend. I can't wait. Everything is super easy, healthy and fresh.

 

Please go and pay the site a visit at the very least! Check it out for all it has to offer. Guaranteed not to disappoint! You can also find Sian's Plan on Facebook and Twitter  www.facebook.com/siansplan  www.twitter.com/siansplan.What will you do to make your life easier in 2014??Sian’s Plan photo e0f33e92-209f-4559-96a2-73e3cccaecb9_zpsb3192877.png photo siansplan-colours-left_zpsa916c0d2.png

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