Those look wonderful! Love the deco job. I made myself a red velvet birthday cake a few weeks ago that was AMAZING--so maybe our recipes are similar? The cake was still moist after a week! (I am the only one who eats cake in our house...)
Anyway, the recipe I used was from the Joy of Baking site. The buttermilk really makes the difference.
Please make this swap your absolute LAST priority for the next few weeks (unless, of course, Craftster helps get your mind off of things for a little bit). Send outs aren't for quite a while, so don't worry about us right now.
The flower is really easy--just rip some of your fabric into strips, lay them out on top of a circle of felt, and use the zig-zag stitch on your machine to stitch randomly over the center of the flower to hold the strips down. Repeat for two or three layers. Then just add a button on the center and a safety pin on the back!
Is it just me, or are smaller pieces of fabric less intimidating? It's like I buy 2-3 yards of a fabric I love, but then it's all in one big beautiful piece, and WHAT IF someday I decide I want to make a whole dress or 14 matching pillows out of it? I can't just cut it up for little projects, when I might need it whole and intact for THE ONE big project!
So this swap excites me--no guilt about using a little fat quarter! Can't wait till tomorrow!
The bag only took an afternoon, but although the tutorial was great, it might be a little confusing for a beginner. Also, if you want a lined bag, you probably shouldn't start with this one, because I had to make that part up as I went along, since mgenevieve didn't line hers, so there weren't instructions in the tutorial for it. I would suggest that you look at the sha-sha dream bag or the Jordy bag tutorials for your second project.