June 21, 2009

{Little Shoes for Little Feet}

Like I mentioned before, I've been sewing a lot. And it seems that all I'm sewing lately are patterns for baby related items. While I have no kiddos, everyone else seems to be adding new additions to their family, and it's keeping my fingers busy.

These are the most adorable little cloth baby shoes. The pattern is relatively easy, and free to download here (thank you Michael Miller Fabrics and this lovely blog). The great thing about this pattern is that all the pieces are so small it's a great project to do with all those scraps of fabric you can't bear to throw out, but don't know what to do with.

The pattern says it fits babies from 0-6 months. I would suggest that it can be altered as far as materials go. Skip the bonded fleece (I used what I had on hand--standard felt) and interfacing, or substitute with what ever you have and all will turn out fine. In essence this is a basic pattern that can be used to make casual lightweight slippers or bulked up with leather bottoms for a dressier look.

Either way your baby will be adorable in them. These green polka dot and pink striped booties are going to a special little someone due this Fall. Meanwhile, if you're curious about what other people have done with the pattern, check out this Flickr group!

June 17, 2009

{Petite Treats}

Yes, the evil empire that is Starbucks is my arch nemesis. I don't even want to know how much money we spend a month there. I think i'd have a heart attack. Between me and the hubby we have been known to visit TWICE in one day. (Well, a coffee in the morning, then one in the afternoon for a pick me up...) Horrible, I know. Even more costly is the urge to add a pastry or scone to your drink order, and Oh, I often do. Especially those Petite Vanilla Scones. Those are my favvvvv. Well, I searched the web for a copycat version, and got a few different ones.

Going by picture, texture, and ingredients, I modified one recipe a little, and came out with a VERY good replica. These vanilla scones are spot on in flavor, and appearance, however the texture is a tad (I mean very minimally) lighter. The Starbuck's ones are dense while light (does that make sense???), and these ones are on the lighter side, a tad less dense. Perhaps I'll reduce the amount of baking powder next time, that might do it. Overall these are amazing! Make them and you'll be pleasantly surprised, and so will your wallet.

2 cups of all purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup sugar
5 tablespoons unsalted butter
1 cup of full fat sour cream
1 large egg yolk
1/2 vanilla bean (pod split, seeds removed)
2 teaspoons vanilla extract

1/2 Vanilla Bean (pod split, seeds removed. other half of bean used in dough)
1 1/2 cups confectioners sugar
Heavy cream as needed


1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees
2. Whisk together dry ingredients
3. Using any method you prefer, cut the cold butter into the dry ingredients until flour resembles coarse meal.
4. In a separate bowl, whisk together the sour cream, egg yolk, vanilla bean insides, and vanilla extract until blended. Add this to the flour-butter mixture and mix on low until dough forms a cohesive ball. Use a spatula to get the dry bits fully incorporated. (It may seem a bit sticky, but this is the texture you want.)
5. Pat dough on a floured surface into a disk about 1-inch in height. Cut into 1.5 inch triangles. Place the pieces on silpat or ungreased baking sheets.
6. Bake for 12 minutes or until lightly golden brown on top.
7. Prepare glaze while scones are baking
8. Place powdered sugar and the other half of the scraped vanilla bean seeds in a medium bowl, and add water/heavy cream one teaspoon at a time, mixing vigorously until smooth and runny.
9. Use a pastry brush to apply a thin layer of glaze over the cooled scones. Brushing rather than drizzling gives a smoother appearance and requires less glaze. Reapply glaze once the first coat had dried to the touch.
10. Serve immediately. Store cooled scones in an airtight container. Or freeze unglazed scones for future use.

June 16, 2009

{Sunny Yellow Birthday Wishes}

I've been sewing lately. With all the babies coming this fall, and summer birthdays I've been busy. This bag is for one of my best friends, (I'll keep it anonymous in case she's reading). The pattern is the Amy Butler Birdie Sling, a simple to make bag that has enough room to keep all your summer items close. Really, this thing could fit a towel, sunscreen, several magazines, and a change of clothes, it's that big. And I love it. The first time I made this bag...well, you can read about that adventure for yourself. Inside the bag are a few goodies, a pair of cloth baby shoes, and a bib. Just for fun. Hm...hope that doesn't give it away.

June 6, 2009

{Homemade & Handwritten}

For a while now I've been on the hunt for new recipe cards. My recipe box is scattered with torn, stained, and faded recipe cards that are close to unreadable. My only problem, is that I am looking for a highly personalized, cute and cheap card to replace them. I found a few that fit one or two of the said requirements, but not all three.These and these (oh and these) are very good options, and I would love to have any of them, but they are lacking in the third requirement, cheap. And don't we all know that that is the most important (at least in my case it is).

The internet does have a plethora of free downloadable cards to choose from, but they lack in personalization and design...so I decided to make my own. A perfect solution to my 3 requirements! I made three different designs choosing only one in the end. Inspiration for the last design came from this stationary I found on Etsy, and it was my design choice for the new cards. I found the vector clip art for free online, and arranged images/changed colors in Photoshop. I also added a monogram to the design and some lines for neater recipe writing. My printer prints on a variety of paper sizes, so I put 3x5 index cards directly into the machine and out came my new cards!

The most tedious part came when I transfered all my recipes to my new cards. We both know that handwritten is so much more charming than typed, it took me a few hours, but the end result was worth it. I now have a completely new set of recipe cards that I love!