Finding work for idle hands: making, baking and more.

Witches’ fingers October 29, 2007

Filed under: Halloween — lauravw @ 10:11 pm

Making witches’ fingers…Very busy with Halloween preparations this week!

At the weekend I went up to stay with my parents, and we had a small Halloween party. Mum and I spent all of Saturday baking and icing things, and she made these witches’ fingers, which were very creepy (and yet delicious).

She bought a pack of frozen cheese straws (basically strips of frozen pastry with cheese and herbs sprinkled on them). Setting them all out on a baking tray, she then made little indentations in them all to make them knobbly like fingers, and with a knife carved a few lines on each of the knuckles.

She then stuck a sliced almond on each to make fingernails, and then stuck in a few little sprigs of herbs to make it look like the fingers were hairy. Rosemary works well for this. You then bake them in the oven, and when they’ve cooled down a bit you can paint the fingernails with food colouring – she did red and black nails…

There are more pictures of them on my Flickr account.


On ice October 26, 2007

Filed under: Crafts — lauravw @ 12:40 pm

I love this decorated fridge on Design Sponge – it’s reminiscent of an Orla Kiely print, it looks really simple and cheap to replicate.


Autumn warmth October 23, 2007

Filed under: Books,Food — lauravw @ 7:27 pm

Oatmeal cookiesOne of my favourite cook books is the Little Red Barn Baking Book – it’s only a small book but it is filled with all kinds of goodies. Over the years I’ve made quite a few of the recipes, and always been happy with them. I remember being a little disappointed by one thing when I bought the book though: there is a chapter on brownies, but it does not have a recipe for classic chocolate brownies. Instead there are a few more exotic variations (raspberry and almond; cheesecake swirl) – I think the reason for this is that the book is a side project of a baked goods company called the Little Red Barn, and I suspect that if brownies were their best selling item (which is pretty much what the blurb says), they didn’t want to publish the recipes that had made them so successful. I can understand that, but it still leaves a big brownie shaped gap in the recipes. I’ve tried without success to find out whether the company is still in business – perhaps they are now trading under a different name? Anyway, my copy of the book is much loved and if you see one for sale anywhere, make sure to have a good look inside.

Last night I made a batch of oatmeal cookies – I’m not a cinnamon fan, so I switched that for some of the very fancy vanilla I treated myself to recently, and they are so yummy.


A new skirt October 14, 2007

Filed under: Sewing — lauravw @ 3:29 pm

Eyelashes!Things seem to be keeping me away from here of late, but there have been a few crafty things in the works. I made a second skirt using the same pattern from Sew What Skirts, and I’m happy with the result. (The skirt is called East Meets West in the book.)

More Amy Butler fabric, this time with eyelashes all over it – I love this print. This time I used wider bias tape for the waistband, and that made it much easier to sew. Practise makes perfect: this time around, I’ve lined up the bits at the bottom a lot better. Again it has a band of denim at the bottom – which is heavier than the main fabric and so weights the skirt quite nicely.

I want to make more skirts, but this style both suits me and is quite economical with fabric, so I’m a bit reluctant to try another style out in case I’m not as happy with the result. I do have a little stash of fabric built up though, so perhaps I just need to pick out a new style from the book and go for it? I’m very keen on the Asian Dream pattern, which has pleats in it.

There are a couple more pictures of this skirt in my Flickr stream.


And one more… October 11, 2007

Filed under: Halloween — lauravw @ 8:00 pm

…thing that I’ve seen is Sunset’s list of Halloween projects, all of which are nice but I love love love the painted and glazed party pumpkins. I was happy to find little tiny munchkin pumpkins at Sainsburys over the weekend, so I have two of those, and last night on the way home from work I bought one medium/large pumpkin, which I will carve nearer to Halloween night.



Filed under: Uncategorized — lauravw @ 10:54 am

I’m moving from one job to another at the moment and so busy with all sorts of non-crafty things, and hence neglecting Busywork. But I have a couple of projects in the pipeline and will be back here soon!

 In the meantime here are two articles in the Times that I’ve found interesting: