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11  COOKING / Dessert / My first gumpaste floral spray :) on: August 21, 2013 07:57:32 PM
I recently started learning how to make gumpaste flowers, and wanted to show fellow cakesters my first floral spray! Carnations are so fun to make. Smiley

I was surprised at how long the flowers took to make. The calla lilies were quick, but the carnations and roses ended up taking 15 - 20 minutes apiece. (I'm sure they'll get quicker as I make more!) Thankfully it's easy to do one step at a time, and by the time you're done your first step on your last flower, your first flower is usually dry enough to do the second step on.

My biggest tip is to buy green or pre-wrapped florist wire for these babies - wrapping all that wire ain't no fun! I lucked into finding green wire at Michael's after I'd finished wrapping about half my stems... I was one happy lady! Smiley

I can't wait to learn how to make more... dahlias and tiger lilies are near the top of my want-to-know-how list!
12  COOKING / Dessert / Some of my newer cakes & goodies - pic HEAVY! on: November 18, 2012 09:28:17 PM
I wanted to put some of my newer baking adventures all in one spot, so here goes!

Brown & blue wedding cake: made for my friend's wedding, this cake was a chocolate cake with peanut butter mousse in between the layers. It was covered in chocolate ganache before adding the sides, which are slabs of chocolate that I poured, then drizzled blue chocolate over.

Fantasy flower cake: so called because that's what those flowers are called! This was a super moist vanilla cake with cookies n' cream filling, and vanilla buttercream. The flowers and butterflies are gumpaste.

Moominmama cake: One of my favourite book series is the Moomin series by Tove Jannson. They're wonderful books with adorable characters. This cake was lemon, with lemon curd filling, and vanilla buttercream. Moominmama was done as a royal icing runout, as were the shapes around the bottom of the cake.

Tim's Cake: A friend of mine requested my help with a birthday cake for her pilot boyfriend. She knew she wanted a plane and something video-gamey on it, but that was all! She cut out stars with my tiny cutters and made lumas (the stars with eyes) for hours on end, while I made the rest of the cake. Once it was together, I piped the clouds and we filled in the stars. The propellor is missing in this photo - whoops. The cake was vanilla, dyed yellow and blue and done in a checkerboard pan. If I remember right, it was frosted in vanilla buttercream. The plane and stars are a 50/50 mix of fondant and gumpaste.

A simpler cake, learning how to make pinecones and poinsettias with buttercream. This cake was another chocolate cake with peanut butter mousse, but also had chopped up peanut butter cups between the layers.

And some cupcake fun!

Strawberry lemonade cupcakes: Looked great but the frosting went as hard as butter in the fridge (and also tasted that way. Blech!).

Mini red velvet cupcakes with cream cheese frosting:

Chocolate cupcakes with caramel filling, caramel cream cheese frosting, and Skor bits. The circles on top were done by rolling out microwaved Kraft caramels, cutting with a cookie cutter, and piping the outlines and letters in chocolate.

Strawberry cupcakes: probably the only times I've used a box mix in the past 3 years - I was in a massive rush to get these done for a baby shower. They're simple, but I thought they were cute!

I got this one out of the book "Hello Cupcake" - needed a Thanksgiving idea! They were ridiculously sweet and while adorable, I'm not sure I'd make them again. The pile of frosting under the turkey was a bit much!

And I'll finish off with some cookies! This was one of my first attempts doing flooded cookies (and it's one of the oldest baking projects here!) I think I did these about 2 years ago. I hadn't quite learned the art of letting the outlines dry completely before adding the colour, hence the mushrooms looking a bit like they're wearing mascara. Smiley

13  COOKING / Dessert / Under the Sea cake on: November 18, 2012 08:58:49 PM
I made this cake a year ago or so for a joint birthday party, and had a heap o' fun with it! I got to choose my own theme and run with it. Since I always wanted to make an under the sea inspired cake, I decided this was the time.

The cake itself is a white almond cake, the fish, bubbles and seashells are sugar cookies with royal icing. The corals, weeds, turtle and crab are gumpaste, the tentacle is solid fondant and the sand is made of graham crumbs. The tentacle was a last minute decision and I'm so glad I did it - it really tied the whole thing together. Smiley

14  Halloween / Halloween Costumes / A classic - Princess Leia (photos with Han Solo and random guest stars) on: November 05, 2012 09:23:07 PM
After deciding on our Calvin and Hobbes costumes for last year, I told my fiance that this year it was his turn to choose who we'd be. After much debate and flip-flopping, he told me he'd always wanted to be Han Solo and Princess Leia - so I sucked it up and made myself a princess gown. Nowhere near as exciting as a tiger suit, but I digress.... Wink

Sadly, the only photos I have are photos from work with other people in them! So, here is the best full-length shot I have, with my coworker the Pink Lady:

The only shot I have with the hood up (I didn't think it was sticking out that much - I look like a shy nun!) with the Pink Lady and Sally the ragdoll:

My scruffy-looking nerf herder and I:

And a quick shot from the side, since it's the only thing I have close to one showing the hood down. (Holding the cake I made my fiance, since his birthday was the same day as the Halloween party we attended!)

My dress/gown was sewn out of bedsheets (and completely lined with more bedsheets!) from a pattern I made up as I went along, with guidance on the shape from a costume site. The belt was a last minute dash to the fabric store where I picked up some vinyl and cut it to shape, and sewed velcro on the back. I then cut fun foam pieces in the shapes of the "metal", and covered them in duct tape. I hot glued an unpunched pinback button front onto each piece, and glued them to the belt - then did a little decorative stapling around the edges when they started to fall off, haha.

My hair is done up with two pairs of socks rolled into my buns. I wrapped it as you'd wrap with a bun roller thinger, then pinned it in place and wrapped each bun in a hair net, and pinned some more.

With all the amazing entries this year I feel inadequate even entering, but I had to enter my favourite contest of the year! All grumping about being the Princess aside, I did actually have a lot of fun in the costume, and aside from the tight neckline it was very comfy to wear. We dressed up to hand out candy and the highlight of my night was when I dropped a goody bag in a little boy's bag, and he said "THANK YOU PRINCESS LEIA!" before running off. Too cute. <3
15  Halloween / Halloween Costumes / Calvin and Hobbes - Let's go exploring! (Tons o' pics) on: November 01, 2011 07:14:23 PM

My boyfriend Bryan and I opted for a less typical "couples" costume this Halloween, and decided on one of my favourite comics. My costume is completely handmade (by me!) and his shirt was made by us. We opted for thicker stripes on the t-shirt than Calvin usually has since this shirt is probably 4 times the size Calvin's shirt would actually be, so we made the stripes about four times as thick. Bryan already had black pants and running shoes, and the wig came from a costume shop. Had we had another week or so I probably would have tried to make it! Wink We were inspired, of course, by the one and only Bill Watterson's Calvin and Hobbes.

P.S.: I make mention of the pattern number later on- I actually modified the pattern so that the crotch would hang lower, so that my legs actually start at my knees, since Hobbes had short legs and a long torso. Smiley Oh, and I added a tail - hehe.

My foot paws are made from canvas runners covered in foam and fleece with felt paw pads. The gloves are four finger gloves made from fleece. I printed multiple pictures of Hobbes from different angles to try to get the stripe placement as accurate as possible, but it changes here and there from comic to comic.

Without further ado...

I present to you now, Calvin and Hobbes, complete with my Ode to Costuming as a Boy & His Tiger. I thought of Bill Watterson's epic poems from the beginning of the treasury books and knew I had to write this in rhyme. Wink

Months before All Hallows Eve my boyfriend Bry and me
Were searching on the internet for what wed choose to be.
We thought of all the standards, the cliches, the old and true,
But soon settled on a costume that would be something brand new!

Yards of fabric, foam and love went into Hobbes pelt,
I used some fleece, I used some fur, of course I used some felt.

I must say that head was sure the hardest part to make,
I was clueless but excited for a challenge to undertake.

I stitched plastic canvas up with yarn to make my noggin frame
While Bryan dab dab dabbed at his t-shirt which once was plain.
He used screen printing ink, duct tape and a stencil brush,
While I worked on foaming up my head so it looked plush.

The tiger suit was made from McCalls M6251,
A pattern for onesie pajamas that was truly second to none.

The stripes were sewn on afterwards, as was the belly white,
Getting everything pinned in place was really quite a fright.

Much seam ripping and re-stitching later, finally it was done,
A boy and his tiger together at last, all ready to look for some fun.

And remember, if ever you find your life too dull and boring,
Call us up, well put on our suits, and take you out exploring!

Process photos: Bryan's shirt, my crafting face, and two of the Hobbes head in the works.


Thanks for looking! We had a blast!

16  SEWING IN GENERAL / Sewing in General: Discussion and Questions / Need help finding orange sweatshirt fleece or an alternative - any ideas? on: September 12, 2011 03:33:30 PM
Does anyone know where I can find orange sweatshirt fleece, or something similar, online?

I'm trying to find some for a costume, but I'm not really succeeding - finding a lot of fleece but no sweatshirt fleece. It's for a set of full pajamas (as in top and bottom together, like footed pajamas without the feet), so I don't want it to be super hot.

Odds are I'll be in it for most of the day at work, so I don't want anything I'll be sweating in halfway through the morning, haha. I'm in Canada, so something a little warm is definitely not a bad thing. I plan on just wearing shorts and a tank top underneath anyway.

Any help is very much appreciated!
17  CLOTHING / Clothing for Kids: Completed Projects / Mario & Luigi hats for twin boys on: May 13, 2010 07:08:00 PM
Just had to share these adorable hats I made for mama24boyz' twins in the Mario Bros. swap! (If you check out the swap gallery, she posted some absolutely ADORABLE shots of her boys in the hats. What a couple of cuties!)

Link to the page with pics of the twins: https://www.craftster.org/forum/index.php?topic=345282.50

Had to try one on for myself, since I'm a "M"ary! Wink

I came up with the pattern from googling random things relating to Mario hats until I had enough of an idea of how to construct one to start hacking away at my fleece stash. I can't wait to make more! Cheesy

18  COOKING / Dessert / Mario cake! on: April 03, 2010 07:17:14 PM
I made this cake in the fall for a coworker's nephew's 5th birthday party. He had a Mario-esque party out at a farm in town. It was great for the kids - the farm had this "Pumpkinfest" going on, so they had all sorts of fun activities... followed up with apple cider, hot chocolate, chili, hot dogs, soup and cake! Yum!

Without further ado, I present the cake! It's not nearly "clean" as I hoped it would be, since I ended up in a bit of a rush at the end. The figures are made with colour flow, the whole cake is covered in marshmallow fondant. The bottom two tiers are an amazing "perfectly chocolate" cake recipe from Hershey's (SO good) and the hat is made of Rice Krispies treats. Smiley

Thanks for looking! Smiley
19  ORGANIZED CRAFT SWAPS / New Swap Theme Ideas / Engrish Swap? on: January 23, 2010 06:34:22 PM

I'll start off by saying I'm a big fan of "engrish". Who wouldn't love a stenciled engrish t-shirt, some clever "human dumpling" earrings, or a CD wallet for all their "Eric Crapton" albums?  Grin

For those who have no idea what I'm talking about, check out www.engrish.com

Anyone in for a silly ol' Engrish swap?
20  JEWELRY AND TRINKETS / Trinkets and Jewelry: Completed Projects: General / Polymer clay Christmas earrings on: December 08, 2009 08:35:18 PM
A few of my latest crafty creations! I have far too much fun making cute little things. The pics are a little dark, unfortunately. Sad I think the reindeer are my favourites!

I made some little holly leaves & berries as well, but haven't managed to get a good pic yet. Sad
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