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1  Birthday Cake MKII in Dessert by mrsflibble on: February 26, 2014 11:04:37 AM
So, my kid got two birthday cakes this year. http://www.craftster.org/forum/index.php?topic=431809.0#axzz2uSL45bRA being the first one, but as mentioned, it was gluten free and I peaked too early.
By the time it got to her actual birthday, we'd eaten the Enterprise cake. I had some leftover grey sugar paste, she adores elephants, bob's yer uncle.

This one was a little more of a disaster-accident-turned-good kind of affair.

It was (yet again) a chocolate, gluten and dairy free cake. The frosting was an odd, experimental one. I'd run out of confectioner's sugar, but still had marzipan (almond paste) and a little white sugar paste left; but not enough of each to top a birthday cake. I mixed both (equal weights) with a little water and some colourant gel in a heavy duty, upright stand mixer and it ended up being all gooey and fudgey and, frankly, delicious. It's something I WILL be doing again.

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2  Enterprise NX-01 Birthday Cake (picture obese) in Dessert by mrsflibble on: February 26, 2014 10:55:14 AM
My daughter is an Enterprise fan. Actually, the word "Fan" doesn't cover it. She's obsessed!
so, what else could I attempt for her birthday but the NX-01?!
ok.. issues in our dietary lives.... we're lactose intollerant, and I can't eat gluten due to other stomach issues. I was darned if I was going to spend days making and decorating a cake I couldn't partake of, so it's both gluten and dairy free.



ok, so that's in in its finished state.

it began with an unassuming, gluten free chocolate cake. I used an off the shelf gluten free self raising flour blend, and a standard 6663 recipe (6oz sugar, 6oz fat, 6oz flour, 3 eggs; although for chocolate it's 4oz flour and 2o cocoa!). I allowed it to cool completely before beginning to cut and shape the saucer section.



I used dairy free chocolate spread as a crumb layer because I'd run out of margarine, and it was 11pm. I also baked a square cake to use for making the Nacelles etc.



While both had been baking, I had worked on a cardboard stand for the nacelles (engines). believe me, this took a LOT of painstaking working out, math, use of a protractor, sticky tape, swears and a few silent prayers!



I left it over night, under a cloth. This was 6 days before her birthday. I hadn't even considered the fact that it was a gluten free cake and so would go utterly stale after only about 4 days. Yeah. Primo planning there, Mom.

the next day was the day for the sugar paste and proper construction.



I used a glac cherry, cut in half, as the front nacelle... thingummy.

It was now that I started to suspect it might end up looking more cartooney and stylised than I'd first anticipated, but yet again I'd been up REALLY late decorating. One of the joys of having a home-schooled kid is she's always present. one of the downsides of having a home schooled kid is.. .she's always bloody present so I was having to wait until after she'd gone to bed to do anything to the cake.



The next night, I was painting the cake. And realising we may as well have two cakes this year. One (this one) on the saturday before her birthday, and to enjoy it with the grandparents, and another to share with her uncles and aunts on her actual birthday.





so... whadya think?! The child was incredibly impressed. BUT joy of joys, my camera decided to die on me right at candle-blowing-out-time!!!
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3  Totes Amazing in Purses, Bags, Wallets: Completed Projects: General by mrsflibble on: February 26, 2014 10:32:14 AM
 Cheesy
These, my dear friends, are Crayon Totes. they're unlined, and made from leftover pieces of quilter's cotton from my stash. I don't quilt, but I do love me some craft cotton lol.
My daughter turned eight this year, she chose four friends to come to a fun afternoon out at the local farm, petting zoo and indoor soft play centre. As it was early February, and mid-week (the joy of having a home-schooled kid who has home-schooled friends), we got an awesome deal on cheap tickets.
Anyways, each of these bags was made with a specific child in mind. LL loves Monopoly, so got monopoly money as her bag. BB's nickname is "Beetle" so hers had ladybugs all over it. JC is a boy who likes dinosaurs, hence the dinosaurs, KC (his sister) is older and so got a more grown up hearts and flowers red on white kinda Scandinavian pattern on hers, and my own kid who always insists on getting favours from her own flipping party had the pink bag.
Each child got a set of crayons, a miniature book about friendship, two word search books, two colouring books, some temporary tattoos (leftover from Squidge's 5th birthday party lol), a mini pack of cards and some sweets. The whole lot cost me 12.75. so that's 2.55 a head.
Each bag took about 40mins to produce, mainly because I used the selvedges as a hem for the band at the top. yay! cutting work out! woo!
I made a slight boo boo mistake on the dinosaurs bag, but the little boy who received it didn't notice.
Each bag is about 6.5" x 4.5" I think, and the seam tape I used instead of making handles oculd have been replaced with proper fabric handles, but I truly couldn't be bothered with the extra effort Cheesy

So, what do we all think?! Please no comments on my laziness lol.

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4  Xmas Pudding sweater in Knitting: Completed Projects by mrsflibble on: October 06, 2013 09:07:57 AM
It's a self drafted, bottom up/circular yoke pattern, and this was essentially both my beta test of the pattern, and the buyer's product. I am annoyed that the puddings didn't come out dead centre of the yoke, but the buyer is pleased with it, so I am satisfied.

I had to pull back the yoke a couple of times due to my own minor mistakes which I couldn't overlook (but someone with no knitting experience would probably never notice), however it was still a surprisingly quick knit as the little boy it's intended for is small, and I appear to have improved my knitting speed recently by making a whole "blessing" of cuddly narwhal(e)s.

Anyway, enough about my cuddly Cetacea and back to the post at hand...

Each of the puddings has a purled pudding part to give it depth and texture, and a knitted cream/brandy butter/icing part, crocheted holly leaves (those were a teeny tiny nightmare in themselves) and glass beads for holly berries.

And anyone who doesn't know what christmas pudding is is missing a big hunk of deliciousness in their lives, and they should look up a recipe and try one lol!!

so, what do you think?!



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5  UK Rail Engineer poppet kinda thing in Toys, Dolls and Playthings: Completed Projects by mrsflibble on: September 01, 2013 06:04:49 AM
I originally put this in the knitting section, but was unsure whether or not he'd fit better in here?!

Here's the thing, until recently my husband worked for a uk rail copany as a maintenance engineer on their rolling stock (he fixed trains). he has spent the last 9 years in orange high vis overalls, so I thought I'd mark the passing of this time by making a poppet type thing, I don't know what else to call it. he keeps referring to it as an effigy. butthead.

Anyway, it's a modified Jean Greenhowe pattern. I WILL make more. oh yes.



It was modified because 1. the ears looked weird, so I left them off. 2. the hair's not knitted like it says to in her patterns, it's tied in because her knitted hair looks short and curly and Hubster's is long and straight and 3. the lack of nostrils became increasingly more disturbing as the mustache and beard went on.

the hair for the poppet is based on his most recent style; before having it cut again to be presentable. it had got quite long and crazy.

ok, so he comes complete with the essentials of uk rail maintenance:

Claw Hammer for Percussive Adjustment



Flathead screwdriver for leverage and general poking



"T-Key" for opening various hatches to gain access to the workey bits of trains



"MiniJimble" has embroidered lapels and a few pockets, and hidden in the hair is a singular grey strand (my hubby has one persistent grey hair that keeps coming back lol)

oh, and here's The Hubster in uniform. This is the only picture I actually have of him in his orange high vis. it's from when Child was asked at preschool what she wanted to dress as for "Heroes" day. she said Daddy. n'awww. he's wearing a high vis vest over his overalls, but you get the picture.....



so, what do you think?! I am rather taken with him and am considering making him a short, dumpy, hippy female partner with glasses... probably wearing a miniature Kate Davies "Owls" sweater and a natty hat Wink
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6  Basil, the little lost alien. in Amigurumi: Completed Projects by mrsflibble on: September 01, 2013 05:54:09 AM
Basil is a little lost and really needs a home Sad Can;t you just see the sadness in his eye? he just wants someone to love him.

I awoke one night to see strange lights in the sky. I heard a crash!

what was that?! Who's there?! What the heck?!!

I pootled outside in my pink jammies to see what all the hubub was about and lo and behold, this little approx 8cm tall guy was already into my greenhouse and trying to eat a basil plant twice his size. He claims he was only climbing it. I'm not so sure. there's sucker marks on my basil... Anyway, that's what I named him. Apparently his true name is unpronounceable in "Terran" as you need six tongues to get the clicks right.

He states he doesn't eat anything and can live on hugs alone. I think he's fibbing. I found my jar of pesto open this morning.....

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7  UK Rail Engineer poppet kinda thing in Knitting: Completed Projects by mrsflibble on: August 31, 2013 11:53:33 AM
Here's the thing, until recently my husband worked for a uk rail copany as a maintenance engineer on their rolling stock (he fixed trains). he has spent the last 9 years in orange high vis overalls, so I thought I'd mark the passing of this time by making a poppet type thing, I don't know what else to call it. he keeps referring to it as an effigy. butthead.

Anyway, it's a modified Jean Greenhowe pattern. I WILL make more. oh yes.



It was modified because 1. the ears looked weird, so I left them off. 2. the hair's not knitted like it says to in her patterns, it's tied in because her knitted hair looks short and curly and Hubster's is long and straight and 3. the lack of nostrils became increasingly more disturbing as the mustache and beard went on.

the hair for the poppet is based on his most recent style; before having it cut again to be presentable. it had got quite long and crazy.

ok, so he comes complete with the essentials of uk rail maintenance:

Claw Hammer for Percussive Adjustment



Flathead screwdriver for leverage and general poking



"T-Key" for opening various hatches to gain access to the workey bits of trains



"MiniJimble" has embroidered lapels and a few pockets, and hidden in the hair is a singular grey strand (my hubby has one persistent grey hair that keeps coming back lol)

oh, and here's The Hubster in uniform. This is the only picture I actually have of him in his orange high vis. it's from when Child was asked at preschool what she wanted to dress as for "Heroes" day. she said Daddy. n'awww. he's wearing a high vis vest over his overalls, but you get the picture.....



so, what do you think?! I am rather taken with him and am considering making him a short, dumpy, hippy female partner with glasses... probably wearing a miniature Kate Davies "Owls" sweater and a natty hat Wink
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8  Cast Cover in Completed Projects by mrsflibble on: July 31, 2013 06:32:06 AM
So, I'm REALLY insanely clumsy. I have been all my life, but since I had my daughter and a subsequent rare birth event called AFE, I've been doing "random gravity checks" every so often. I make sure gravity still works by falling like a sack of potatoes. It's ok. no need to thank me.

anyway, about 8 years ago my clumsy self tripped on something in my apartment and hurt my foot. I didn't think much of it, it hurt for a while and I havn't been able to wear tight shoes since but at the time, I couldn't take time off work to get it looked at. It didn't swell, it didn't bruise so I thought nothing much of it. Yeah. Stupid.

3 weeks ago I did a post AFE random gravity check on my own stairs. I fell right onto my foot. again, it hurt much the same as last time, and the pain didn't ease. I tried putting a pressure bandage on it, ice etc but the bandage just was excruciating. Again, no swelling, no bruising. I gave in and went to my primary care physician (who in the UK is called a GP) a week after falling. He said he didn't think anything was broken, but he gave me a request for an xray to take to the hospital, and advised that if I was in as much pain as I said I was (yah I was) I should attend the emergency dept because the results of the xray from the form he'd given me would take 2 weeks to get back to him, whereas the ER xrays are processed right away.... and I could get the good drugs.

So I went home, gathered supplies; two books, a drink, a cereal bar and got the husband to drop me off. 4 hours later and I had this:



guess what? yeah. I broke my foot. 5th metatarsal just above the tarsometatarsal joint. it's somewhere between an alvulsion and a jones for those who are medically...ya' know.
hey. I did get the good drugs which finally eased the pain, and a temporary "backslab" cast until I could see the ortho consultant the next week... I saw him, he mentioned how it looks like an old break (yep, 8 years ago) so my pain may be due to it shifting when I fell but to be on the safe side, I should have a full "walking" cast on just in case it had healed and been rebroken. Hey, at least I can manage stairs properly now and don't have to plan my bathroom visits like I did in the first week.



yeah. I chose pink. but the thing is, without a bandage topping like I had on the temporary cast, it's really scratchy! I mean like mental scratchy, it's pulled loops up on my footstool and everything. I looked online at cast covers but they're really expensive for something I'm only gonna use for 6 weeks at most.

enter a 3 year old pair of Poundland (think Dollar Tree) knee high socks and some yarn.




Schmecksy am I right?!

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9  Pattern tracing? in Clothing: Discussion and Questions by mrsflibble on: July 11, 2013 02:03:07 PM
What paper should I use to trace a pattern?
!t's a mainland European one (yes, there is a difference, British patterns come with seam  allowance, mainland ones do not) so I know I need to add a seam allowance.
It's a gorgeous pattern, but very daunting as the patterns are all layered in different colours on the one page.

I have a tracing wheel, but what paper? I don't really want to have to pay for pattern paper, but will if I have to.

However, I have an abundance of wall lining paper so... would that work?!

thanks.

oh, incidentally... this is my plan Cheesy

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10  Tudor clothing- rather picture obese; more added from the event :D in Costumes: Completed Projects by mrsflibble on: July 01, 2013 03:42:41 AM
My child is home educated. On wednesday this week we shall be swanning off to Kentwell Hall in Suffolk to enjoy a Home Educator's Tudor Day for which we need to be dressed in Tudor garb... otherwise the time machine won't work.

These costumes have taken me over a month to source and make everything needed. They're verging on historically accurate, had I not used a sewing machine, polyester thread, lycra socks and polycotton for my daughter's underdress and bonnet. I'm all in linen. We should have woolen dresses, as during most of Queen Elizabeth I's reign, Englad suffered almost a mini ice age with summer temperatures never getting over about 10 degrees C. So they needed their layers, their woolen broadcloth, their heavy linen.... We're in summer 2013 and the temperature on wednesday is going to be about 24 dec C. uuuurgh.

anyway, I'm in brown, she's in orange. YES they would have had orange clothing; this is basically the shade you get from freshly pulled onion skins.

so, we have our underdresses, our skirts and bodices, our aprons and our belts.

This has been a nightmare project due to my sewing machine breaking AGAIN, being fixed AGAIN, TWICE and then ending up catastrophically destroying itself on literally the last inch of the hem of my apron. thankfully, this was the last item of clothing for the trip too Cheesy And new machine is on its way. I'd been saving for one anyway.

I wanted more pictures of us in our clothing, close ups etc but the child's mood this morning didn't hold with those kind of shenanigans.



ok so that's me, child and elephant. on my belt is a cup on a leather thong, a "pocket" (circle of leather, drawn up and draw-strung for holding money) and a long, thin pocket to hold Ye Olde EpiPen. yeah...that one's a bit of a stretch, but I can't be without it so it had to be incorporated.

Child's belt has a cup and a pocket. her cup had no handle so I've actually made a wrap for it from leather. The leather for all of these things, again, came from the jumble. I got a long, patchwork leather skirt in a UK Ladies' size 14 (too small for me) for 1 and spent an afternoon unpicking it. I then sold someoffcuts of leather on ebay for 2.99, so made a profit.

My shoes are fabulous, really hideous. they're brown leather, and look so like a pair of tudor man's shoes that I was very happy indeed. A woman of my status (working class) would probably not have had her own shoes unless she was farming, she would have borrowed those of her husband and just had leather footwraps like my viking shoes that are somewhere in the depths of craftster. So, yeah. men's shoes. well, boy's. I have teensy feet. I found those shoes in a charity shop for 2.99.

My over dress is made from linen, it's the only bit of actual, new, off the bolt fabric that I bought. 3m of the stuff. thankfully I'm short so was able to make the skirt shorter than a normal person's. I used the selvedge as a hem, because I hate hemming.

My under dress is linen. I got a linen bed sheet and a pillow case from a local jumble (rummage) sale. 50p for the two Cheesy



The cuffs of my under dress are the only bit of decoration I have. they're ruffled and have a string closure. and a loose thread. apologies for that.



My bodice started life as a simple, laced waistcoat shape. but I put it on and it was so hideous, and so wrong that I took it off, put it on inside out, pinned, basted, sewed and cut to reshape it.



(here's the lining)



I used a very stiff interfacing for the busk; the place where the laces go. I didn't want the unfortunate bunching or puckering of the fabric one sees on un-stiffened bodices. I have not boned it, not am I wearing a corset. that's one step too far for me. I have to travel an hour and a half to get to the place, wearing a corset for that time? nope.

The child even has tudor shoes.



yeah, ok so my leatherwork's a bit pants, but there you go. oh, and the only leather I had that was stiff enough for the soles of her shoes is red. so she has a pair of "Ye Boutins".

Child's dress is orange cotton, no, not linen unfortunately and yes, they would have had that exact shade. It started life as a duvet cover. again, rummage sale find, again wonderfully cheap.

Her underdress is polycotton and has simple draw cuffs, none of this ruffling stuff. her bonnet is straight edged as befits a girl of the time. she does not need to hide her hair either, only married ladies needed to do that.

Child's bonnet, winged the pattern but referred to historical documents for reference.



My bonnet and wrap, complete with Ye Olde Duckface. Ths is actually a made up pattern, I based it on that worn by historian Ruth Goodman in Tales From The Green Valley. That's set just one king later, so the fashions would have been similar if not the same. It's shaped to denote that I am married.



and finally, the child has a toy elephant which goes absolutely everywhere with her. Ergo, this elephant needs to be dressed right.

Arrietty is sporting a polycotton under dress, woolen over dress with satin stitched hems, a Tudor Blackwork embroidered apron and even she has a cup on her belt (thankyou ebay!) yes, she's higher status than us hence why she gets embroidery. the Sumptuary Laws of the time were quite specific. Her bonnet is also polycotton.





so... can I cook, or can I cook?! lol!!

ADDITION: I ended adding a bit more fabric to the bottom of my bodice because it wasn't sitting right, and it was much better.



At the event, I actually got asked for directions by another visitor, so I must have looked good lol. I had many compliments on my outfit, as did the daughter and the elephant.



The child, in the stocks, showing off her "YeBoutins"



and finally, this is my kid. looking all tudorish, chatting to chickens.

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