Tuesday, 28 June 2011

Finding my feet with Blogger

I really appreciate it when people have taken time to read my blog and have been kind enough to follow me.

I take time to read your blogs too and have been compelled to leave comments when I have seen your wonderful creations...but I'm unable to leave a comment without being 'anonymous'.

I'm trying to sort it out so please don't think I'm ignoring you x

Saturday, 25 June 2011

Saturday Sewing ~ 'Square Deal' Pincushion Variation with Covered Buttons

I've spent a fair amount of time picking pins off the floor when I'm working on a project. I'm missing one essential piece of kit - a pincushion!

I can remember buying a pincushion for my mum at a school Christmas craft fair in the early 1980s. It was made by a friends mum who I'd previously watched folding squares of fabric into triangles, stuffing them and sewing then together on her machine ready for the fair.

chose some Carolyn Gavin fabric, Spring Street Buzzing Garden and Tossed Flowers in blue. Using Heather Baileys free Square Deal Pincushion pattern.

The actual pattern uses ribbon crossed over the pincushion. I haven't used it here because I didn't want to hide the Buzzing Garden design. I covered two buttons in the contrasting Tossed Flowers fabric for the top and bottom to finish it.

This was really fun to make! I'll pick some different fabric and make one for mum soon.

Thursday, 23 June 2011

Summer Edible Flower Salad

The garden has started to run riot now that we have had a few days of rain. I usually have salad leaves growing in the greenhouse and tonight I added some of the first edible flowers to appear in the garden.

Borage, Calendula and nasturtium

Blue borage flowers have a delicate taste which is similar to cucumber. While the vermilion Nasturtium and slender calendula petals taste slightly peppery. All three flowers are really easy to grow and borage is especially loved by bees. I would really like to keep bees you know...maybe one day.

Sunday, 19 June 2011

Fabric Covered Buttons

Seeing as I can't help hoarding even the smallest pieces of fabric left over from a project, it was about time I try put them to good use. I didn't have much success with my hand button covering tool in the past so I treating myself to a button covering press.

My husband was mildly impressed that his wife had gone out and bought herself a 'fly-press' (albeit a small one). To be honest I have hardly had a look in since. He set it up for me because the instructions were for a different machine which was kind of him. 

I don't think this kindness was completely for my benefit. Now that he has sussed out how it works he wants to make some modifications for his own use. That's worrying because he's a workshop, lathe, grease and swarf kind of man. I'm going have to put my foot down!

Here's my first attempt (after a bit of head scratching!)

Thursday, 9 June 2011

Recipe ~ How to Make Elderflower Cordial

We were given this recipe a couple of years ago and it's the best we have tried yet. We have tried several recipes before and this particular one doesn't taste too sweet. It's best to pick elderflower heads on a warm sunny day.

25 elderflower heads
2lb sugar
2oz citric acid
2 pints boiled water - cooled
1 lemon zested, squeezed and remains chopped

1. Pick or snip flowers off their stalks and put them into a bowl
2. Add all the other ingredients and stir
3. Cover and leave for 2 days
4. Stir occasionally until all the sugar is dissolved
5. Strain through muslin and pour into sterilized bottles
6. Keep in the fridge

It's possible to freeze batches of cordial but make sure you leave a little room for expansion in the bottle or container. Dilute to taste with water, about 1/10 cordial to water but I like less. 
Try it with cold sparkling water on a hot day. 

Tuesday, 7 June 2011

Cornish Garden ~ June ~ Flowers and Bees

There are a lot of 'self-set' plants in our garden. I suppose technically they should be called weeds. To be honest some of them are so pretty it would be a shame to pull them up. Especially when the seed pods are just as interesting to look at as the blooms.

We live in a valley which leads to the sea. The garden can be exposed to high winds and salty air so many plants can't cope unless they are in a sheltered nook. 

Sometimes it's better to let nature take it's course, these plants can take whatever conditions are thrown at them. The local bees seem to appreciate them too.

Monday, 6 June 2011

1 Award, 7 Random Things and 7 Versatile Bloggers.

I was really happy to receive a note from Ros at RosMadeMe to say that she had given me The Versatile Blogger award! Thanks Ros!

Before I can bathe in versatile blogging glory there are a few things I need to do in return for accepting it ~
  • Make a post linking back the person who gave you the award.
  • Share seven random things about yourself. 
  • Award seven recently discovered bloggers with this award and contact them to let them know they have won.
Seven random things about me ~
1. I'm an Ordnance Survey Map addict. I need an OS map for any area I visit and will spend hours pouring over them.
2. I'll only iron my sewing projects, ironing anything else would be a waste of life. Wash and hang is my motto!
3. When I'm on my travels I always have my eyes peeled for new places to swim. I'm not fussy whether it's in the sea, the river or in a lake.
4. I love painting (decorating) stick a brush and a roller in my hand and there's no stopping me...much to the delight of my husband. (the same goes for grass cutting!).
5. I hate shopping, unless it's for fabric or craft supplies (...or books).
6. I buy too many books, I'm running out of space to put them. I borrow lots from the library too...but then go and by the ones I fall in love with!
7. I love a good thunder storm and the smell of rain after a hot day.

Seven blogs that I have recently discovered which are well worth a visit
Blooming felt
Dreamstar Diary
My Belovedly Life
Dearest Jackdaw
Beautiful Things
handmade by rosiepink
Beadelicious Beads

Sunday, 5 June 2011

Bunting in Soft Pastel Flowers

I'll admit to having one of those unfinished sewing projects that I've done my best to avoid recently. So, instead of watching YouTube tutorials on how to sew with elasticated thread...I've made bunting! 

This little piece of procrastination was made with three My Minds Eye - Penny Lane 'Petals' fat quarters in pink, blue and green. Each FQ made five double sided flags.

The only puzzle was trying to work out how on earth should I photograph it!