Monday, February 28, 2011

Me-Made-March 11

Last week I was lunching with a friend when she complimented me on a skirt I sewed for work. I said something along the lines of "Thanks dude, I like it too - every time I wear it, just for the day I feel like I could do Me-Made-March". To which she replied "go on then, do it."

Thinking about it later at home, I realised she was right - I have enough me-made stuff to do this, I just usually pick something else to wear.

And so here's my Me-Made-March pledge:

'I, Bron from Krafty Kuka, sign up as a participant of Me-Made-March '11. I endeavour to wear one handmade or refashioned item of clothing or accessory each day for the duration of March 2011'

Like I said, I've got a couple of things (mostly) skirts to start me off, and of course the me-made bank can be built up during the month.
Also, as you can see I'm including accessories, so expect to see some new brooches around these parts soon!
I'm planning to post a couple of days of pictures at a time every few days, rather than on pic everyday - and of course you can also check out the photos in the flickr group.

Head over to Zoe's ace blog if you want to find out more about Me-Made-March (or maybe even join us!) =)

Royal twins - official pics

Since I told you all last week how excited I was about the arrival of the newest members of the Danish Royal family, I thought it would hardly be fair not to draw your attention to the gorgeous official pictures of the babies released on the Crown Prince pair's website last week
photo source: Steen Brogaard, Crown Prince pair's Official website

So cute! =)

Ooh, and in case you're wondering, the twins' names still haven't been announced - we'll find out at their Christening on 14 April. Hot tips around Denmark seem to be Valdemar and Mathilde

Sunday, February 27, 2011

February footy

Yesterday we went along to check out the first of 'two' AFL games which will be played at Manuka Oval this year (I think it really only counts as a half, since only one of the teams was an AFL team, but anyway...)

In all honesty the game wasn't great, but it was actually not as bad as I expected it too be - whilst Carlton won by over 25 goals there were some promising moments during play where I thought the GWS players did really well, given they are essentially kids playing against an established team of experienced AFL players.

No doubt there will be loads of discussion in the next week or so questioning the value of having had the GWS take part in the pre-season comp this year, but clearly the actual value for them has nothing to do with the game - it was all about marketing the brand, and establishing support and interest for the new side.

In any case, it was a gorgeous day - it was quite a novelty to watch live footy in ice-cream friendly weather!

If you're interested in seeing a couple more pics I've popped some over on flickr

Saturday, February 26, 2011

Meyers Bageri :: cookies med chokolade

My second batch of cookies from Meyers Bageri - cookies med chokolade.

These used the same method as the vanillesmåkager I made last weekend, where the dough is rolled to a sausage, chilled, then sliced for baking. I was really happy with the shape this method gave the cookies - they look like real cookies ;o)

And they were delicious - next time I think a touch less salt and baking powder, but otherwise these might just be my new go-to choc-chip recipe =)

Thursday, February 24, 2011

Creative Space :: two little ducks

The ducky embroidery I started on Saturday is all finished...

I think the pig might be next.

check out today's other creative spaces at Kootoyoo

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

holiday faves :: nature

We saw loads of gorgeous scenery on our holiday, but I think the time nature most took my breath away was on our day trip to Skagen.

Skagen is at the very very northern most tip of Denmark, where the North and Baltic seas meet. It is really amazing - you can actually see a line out through the water where the currents collide.

The sky was amazing! Look at the clouds! Although it was only 1pm the sun was quite low, and there were sunset-y colours across the horizon. I don't think it quite shows up very well in the photo, but there was an arc of almost a rainbow around the sun (you can kind of see it on the left in the first photo there). The colours come up quite differently in those two - really the light was probably somewhere in between.

I think this was the coldest day of our holiday! Right on the shore the water was slushy with ice (like a frozen margarita!) - the white along the shoreline there is flakes of ice!

And look at this little guy enjoying the sunshine!
Gorgeous! =)


Monday, February 21, 2011

the original - and the best!!

Hurrah - look what I bought today!

Of course we had this book growing up, and spent so many hours admiring the cakes and trying to decide which cake we would have next birthday.
I've been looking for a copy of my own for years, but they never seem to pop up in second-hand shops - possibly something to do with the fact second-hand copies have been selling on e-bay for over $50! - so you can imagine how excited I was to see it was reprinted!

Whilst the poster says available now at newsagents, I should warn it might be tricky to get your hands on one - both newsies I tried in the city yesterday were sold out, and this was the last where I bought it too (apparently they were only delivered on Friday, and sold out already!), so keep your eye out for a restock =) (they'll be in Big W in March too).

Now I just need an excuse to test it out!!


Sunday, February 20, 2011

Meyers Bageri :: vanillesmåkager

Yesterday's Brown Owls meeting gave me the perfect excuse to try a recipe from my newest cookbook - Meyers Bageri (bakery)

I have the dvds of Claus Meyer presenting the Danish series of New Scandinavian Cooking, so I was super excited to come across this book of his favourite baking recipes.

The book is basically slit into three kinds of recipes - breads, pastries and other sweet things. I can't wait to try the breads, and to get into the pastries with marzipan filling, but for yesterday I wanted something super simple, so I went with the vanillesmåkager (vanilla cookies)

They were very easy - I mixed up the dough in my blender, then rolled it into sausages and popped in the fridge overnight. Then, in the morning I just had to slice it up and bake.
I think they worked out pretty well, although it was warm enough in the kitchen that the dough got soft quickly, so I found it much easier to slice after 15 minutes or so in the freezer. Also I used regular sugar and I think the texture would be better with caster sugar. But I did think it was lovely to use real vanilla instead of essence - look at all those delicious dark specks on the pale cookies!

I'm trying to get back into the habit I started last year of trying new recipes, and I can't wait to try another one from this book! =)


Saturday, February 19, 2011

Brown Owls :: stitched up

We had a wonderful afternoon filled with stitchy goodness at today's Brown Owls meeting - check out the wrap up on the Brown Owls members blog and this post at gnomeangel for some great pics of our lovely sticheries!

I decided to make a start on the embroidery blocks from the Country Time Quilt in Alicia Paulson's lovely Embroidery Companion. I started with the ducks, and as you can see from the shot up the top there, as usual I was so busy chatting (and eating) that I hardly got any crafting done ;o)

In the pattern there are 6 embroidered blocks: ducks, pony, cow, pig, sheep and rooster - I'm thinking about swapping out the sheep and rooster for a cat and a dog, so the search is on for patterns (of pictures) I can use that fit with the patterns from the book.

I already can't wait for our next meet =)


ps. I discovered this evening that the pattern for one of my favourites embroideries (the little girl with the ladybird) from the inspiration collage I posted yesterday is available as a freebie on flickr! Go check it out, and while you're there have a look at all the other lovelies in nanaCompany's photostream - I LOVE the placemats!!

Friday, February 18, 2011

Brown Owls inspiration :: embroidery

Saturday is our first Brown Owls meet for 2011 (hurrah!) and we're kicking off with embroidery (double hurrah!!)

Embroidery is one of my very favourite crafts - it is so super simple (check out this great beginners' tutorial if you don't believe me!), and the results are really impressive.

As usual, for inspiration I look to flickr first - these pics here are some of my current favourites from the embroidery group. The Feeling Stitchy blog is also always super fun and inspiring!

1. 47 365, 2. February Stitch Along, 3. Embroidery: a tea cup, 4. Dear Little Deer, 5. Tree of Love, 6. Mademoiselle Chatte & Monsieur Chat

There are LOADS of great patterns out there on the internets - on etsy I love a little sweetness (which is where my little red riding hood pattern came from), sew deerly loved and loopsies, plus soooo many freebies online too - check out the free links in the post on the Brown Owls members blog.

oooh I need to start taking better pictures!

But one of the best things about embroidery is that you don't have to stick to patterns! You can embroider just about ANYTHING - think about drawings from colouring and story books, simple rubber stamp designs (there are some really cute ones in scrapbooking supply shops - how adorable would this girl be in embroidered form?! Or the foxes and bike on this page), something you've sketched yourself, or even a photo (check out this tutorial at Kootoyoo) Amazing!

I haven't quite decided what I'll take along yet - I do actually have a stamp somewhere I want to do as an embroidery, but I'm not quite sure exactly where it is. I'm thinking maybe something from my copy of Alicia Paulson's Embroidery Companion book - either making a start on some embroidered farm animals to make a quilt for a friend who is pregnant, or something to go in a quilt for my sewing room =)

Now, just to decide what to bake! =)


Thursday, February 17, 2011

my creative space :: circles

As you might guess from yesterday's post, my creative space is full of sewing bits and pieces this week, but it hasn't all been just pattern lust around here - last week I took advantage of some uninterrupted time at home to dust off the sewing machine and work on some summery sewing (and watch almost all of season 7 of project runway, in preparation for season 8 to start next week!)

I cut out some purple cotton to sew up a test run of Simplicity 4236 - a simple circle skirt to get me back into the swing of sewing. All I needed was for the waist on the skirt to resemble my waist - how hard could it be?

Ok, so saying it went wrong would be overly dramatic, but it wasn't quite as straightforward as I expected. The problem was that I measured my waist and cut out a size 18, since that was the size that matched my measurements according to the size chart on the back of the envelope. Then I ended up having to cut the pieces back to between a 12 and 14 before it would fit me! I understand that the pattern if for wearing a bit lower than the natural waist, so it would be a bit bigger than the waist measurement, but I could take this off without unzipping, and my hips are a good two sizes bigger than my waist on the Simplicity size charts. It is just so frustrating!

I'm completely open to advice from my more experienced sewing friends - how do you get a decent start to fit with? I don't mean making a muslin to tweak a fit before using your 'good' fabric, but to chose a size as a starting point? Do you ignore the size chart and measurements on the envelope and just measure the pattern pieces for comparison with your measurements? It is especially annoying since my size tends to sit right between where the 'misses' sizes end and the plus or women's starts, so it is always tricky to decide what to get.

In any case, I will end up with something wearable, and I'll know what to cut next time, but it would be a nice problem to be able to avoid when working on more complex patterns. I'm starting to think this book by Cal Patch might start to pop up in my creative spacey future...

or maybe that's just the project runway talking!


check out loads of creative spaces where people don't just go on about their lack of seamstressy skills over at Kirsty's!

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

pattern fever!

Maybe it's the fact that I seem to have missed a whole summer of shopping (the forecast is for 27ish degrees the next few days here, but summer frocks have made way for winter coats in the shops!) or whether its the inspiration from Zoe and her me-made-may-ers, but I seem to have pattern fever at the moment!

I did buy a few newies at 50% off last week, but now I can't stop thinking about this one...

I'd do it in something floral - the look on the envelope is a touch too school-girly for me - but I do think it's so cute!

I've made a deal with myself that I can think about getting it if I sew two garments from patterns I've already got... wish my self-discipline luck!


Tuesday, February 15, 2011

my most favourite and best...

As I mentioned last week, I have soooo many gorgeous photos from our holiday, so I thought a fun way to share them might be to show some of my most favourite and best bits through pictures - starting with this, from one of our most exciting moments...

I know its totally daggy - but I just love my Danish royals!

Mum and I spent two nights in Copenhagen, with a very close eye on the news for any sign that the twins were on their way, so we were very excited to hear that Mary was in labour on the Saturday morning.


After a stroll through a very frosty Nyhavn we visited (a very icy) Amalienborg before heading back to the station for our train to Odense.

As we walked into Rådhuspladsen (city hall square) the good news was up in lights, hooray - a prince and a princess!! =)

pic from Billed Bladet

Like I said - maybe its a bit daggy, but I think it was SUPER exciting!


Monday, February 14, 2011

Warblers forever!

First day back at work today - eeek!

Thank goodness Monday is Glee day - I love those Warblers!


Tuesday, February 08, 2011

In February I am reading...

During our holiday we spent quite a lot of time on the train - which would be perfect reading time if the scenery wasn't just too good to take your eyes off!

Despite the distractions I did manage to get through the first two of Stieg Larsson's Millenium Trilogy - so this month I'm really excited to get right into the third one!

I'd love to hear what you're reading - so do leave a comment or post on your blog and link with Mr Linky below to join our bloggy book club for February and let us know!

Enjoy your reading!!

Monday, February 07, 2011

home again...

Well, I arrived home from my wintry holiday yesterday, and although I'm super happy to be back with my family I'm still a bit sad that it is all over =(
We had such a great time!!

I can't wait to get all my photos organised, and share some of my favourites - lucky I've got another whole week at home to recover =)