Sunday, November 30, 2014

AG doll advent calendar: setting up the scene

Here is the scene I set up next to Miss C.'s bedroom for her to open
and set up her advent calendar surprises.
I used 3 poster boards that I taped together and covered in scrapbooking paper,
I am going for a cabin feel, something like rustic glam Christmas, if such thing exists.
I added a large tree in a metal bucket with some snowflake lights,
it is pretty bare right now, but this is day 0 !

If you have ever purchased an advent calendar from Playmobil,
you know it comes with a cardboard backdrop, perfect place to display the daily goodies.

So I tried to recreate something similar....
I hope it turns out as good as I see it in my head!

Happy day!

American Girl Doll advent calendar

After looking through all the advent calendars that inspired me,
I found the perfect combination that worked for me.
I followed Ana White's tutorial for making the frame,
I changed the size to accommodate the space we have
(I know where I want to use it after the holidays!)

I added a back, covered it with some Christmas fabric,
and stringed some little ropes to hang the surprises.

Miss C. decorated 24 paper bags with tapes
while I cut out numbers out of shiny brown paper.

Finally I hanged them on the string with colorful clothespins.
Looking forward to opening the first one tomorrow....
Happy day!

Tuesday, November 25, 2014

silk and Liberty of London butterfly

I was inspired by these butterflies from Michelle Patterns .
They are made like traditional origami butterfly but out of fabric,
what could be better?

I used some beautiful raw silk and a Liberty of London print, 
and sewed a brooch pin in the back. 
For the folding I followed this directions from Origami Instructions,
starting at number 4, as suggested by Michelle.
I love it so much that I will be making more in the future...
Happy sewing!

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

advent calendar inspiration

Since I have decided to make Miss C. AG Doll advent calendar,
I have been looking at quite a few designs to inspire me.
Here are some of my favorites: 
1)1001 cartes   2) most lovely things   3) pottery barn
4) sugar and charm   5) pottery barn   6) shanty 2 chic

And here are some great looking ones,
just not practical for my application.
1) the painted hive   2) one lucky day   3) thistlewood farms
And how could I forget to mention the one I made a few years ago,
full of mittens!

After looking and searching, I think I finally know what I am going to make!
Hope it turns out as good as I see it n my head,
that is always the tricky part!
Happy day!

Monday, November 17, 2014

secret doll project....

Have you been wondering lately why I have not been posting any doll stuff?
well I have been very busy making, crafting, sewing doll clothes, accessories, furniture
 for a very special project: an AG Doll advent calendar!
My kids have always enjoyed advent calendars, especially the Lego and Playmobil ones,
so much better than the ones I had as a kid ( with a small chocolate or a picture,
 which I thought were very cool at the time, my friends had none!)
Well this year, Miss C. was not interested in any,
Brick Master, who is almost 14 and as tall as me, saw the Star Wars Lego advent calendar
and declared himself once again not too old/big for it, my kind of guy!
So it was only fair that I found a solution to the emerging
unfairness of the situation....
I came up with 24 small and large little presents for dolls:
clothes, accessories, furniture, pet, most of them homemade and a few purchased. 
Like in any advent calendar, some days are better than others,
but they all work together to define the big picture.
In order to keep it a real surprise for Miss C., I am going to only show 
a sneak peak of the goodies, but we will take pictures
 during the month of December and share the joy!
Happy crafting!

Monday, November 10, 2014

fold up tote bag

This year, I decide to kick off my Christmas sewing early,
it is important to start with good intention.
So far I have made a few presents for some of my girlfriends.
I always love to make pouches with zippers,

This time I went a different route: a fold up tote bag.
As more counties in the DC area are going without plastic bags,
I find myself with need of little bags to carry purchases
( and I do not mean groceries)
but I do not always have one with me.

and I sewed little and light tote bags that fit neatly in one's purse.

I used a bright daisy print and a complementary solid cotton
(eggplant or gray)
They turned out really cute and fun.
I am so happy to have already finished some Christmas projects.

Happy sewing!

Friday, November 7, 2014

cinnamon roll bread

Ever since I took a French pastry class last fall,
my boss keeps expecting treats, especially for our Monday morning.
While I rebel sometimes, I often bring something homemade.
In the past I have made lemon butter cake (in a loaf form), chocolate fondant,
I realized the easiest one to eat were individual portions that did not require a plate,
or loaf shape goodies that can be cut into slices.

And this is how my traditional Sunday cinnamon rolls were transformed into a bread.
It was perfect to eat and serve, and looked just delicious!

Instead of putting the cinnamon rolls in a circular pan, I used a loaf pan, and put a few extra in it.
After icing the top, I cut it like a bread, making it easier to eat without plate or silverware.

I always go with the classic recipe from Better Home and Gardens, 
you know, the one with the red cover.
It is easy and works every time:
1 cup warm milk, 2 tsp yeast, 1/3 cup sugar, 1/3 cup melted butter,
5 cup flour, 1/2 tsp salt, 3 eggs.
Dissolve the yeast in the milk and sugar, then knead everything together.
Let rest 1 1/2 h, roll the dough, brush with butter, cover with cinnamon sugar,
roll, cut and store in the pans overnight.
Let warm to room temperature for 30 min, bake at 375 for about 20-25 min.
Cover with icing (milk, sugar and vanilla)

Of course, it also works well the traditional way, one or may be 2 in a plate, with a fork
and a nice cup of hot chai.

Happy day!

Coffee, bunny and Easter eggs

Can anyone have too many bunnies, really? OK, maybe, but I am not there yet! I changed my cocoa station from last winter to a spring coffee ...