We blog, we bake.
We craft, we create.

Thursday, 28 August 2014

Bag it up

Well Hello there dear friends. I've been busy with my new passion, bag making. Wilbear bought me a sewing machine back in May, and I've been learning how to use it by sewing various stuffed toys and so on. I searched Youtube for tutorials on any easy makes and found a fabulous sewing lady, Debbie Shore. I particularly like one of her simple lined bag makes, so much so that I've now made it 8 times in various sizes and patterns. Here are just a few of my makes using her tutorial.

I think I'm a little addicted. Check out her Youtube account here, or, for the tutorial I followed to make my bags, look Right here.
I had a little fabric left over from one of my bag makes, so cut it into two little tote sized shapes, with lining fabric of the same size.

To make the handles, I followed Debbie's instructions to cut two lengths of fabric to 19" long by 3 1/2" wide...

I folded these in half, unfolded, then folded into the crease.

To create a handle

Which I pressed, in my own, inimitable style!! You won't see this on the original tutorial!

I then sewed a zigzag stitch along the side of the handles

Next, I attached the handles to the right sides of the outer fabric, using my tape measure to make sure the handles were even.

I then attached the lining fabric

And stitched along the tops of the bag, sewing the handles into place.

Like so, or should that be sew??

Now I needed to sew the bag together, I made sure the seams matched,

then sewed my bags up, leaving a small gap so that they could be turned right way out at the end. To make a more boxy shape, I followed Debbie's advice to cut a 2" triangle to each corner and then cut across. Debbie explains this so much better than I can!

Next, I turned my bag right way out

I stitched up my lining where I'd left the gap for turning. I did this by machine as my paw sewing is less than perfect!

Voila, my latest mini tote makes.

Complete with neat lining

I'm planning on gifting my makes to friends for birthdays and Christmas, hopefully they'll like them, or at least pretend to!

I'm off to watch more Youtube video from Debbie. What fun.
With love from the bears

Saturday, 23 August 2014

Baking Inspiration

Aloha friends, it's Podgy here again today, aren't you all lucky to share my company again so soon? For any of you good peeps in the UK, have you been watching it? What do you mean, what is IT? The Great British Bake Off of course! I tune in for my weekly fix, and always feel inspired to make something straight after. This week was biscuit week, so what better than to don my chef whites and get baking?

We don't have the most recent Bake Off tie in book, yet, but we do have the first book in the series, so I pawrused that for some inspawration.

Mmmm ginger biccies, that was my first make decided. I gathered some ingredients and posed for a photo opportunity...

Then I got baking, with the help of my trusty mixer, Sir Ken-of-the-wood. He makes baking so much more simpler, and saves my poor paws from many an ache.

I considered making one giant biscuit

But conceded the other bears might lynch me if I did, so I divided the dough into measly morsels and baked (them, not me) in my very hot oven...

Keeping a beady eye on them to make sure they didn't walk off onto other bears' paws!!

Look at those yumsome perfectious biscuitynesses (yes, they are all proper words, I made them up so they must be.)

Not yet content with my most marvellous feat, I pawrused the Internet for more inspawration and found a recipe for Peanut butter cookies

These were really simple to make, and even simpler to eat.

I started with one biscuit for each paw, as any self respecting baking bear should do. Now, I'm off to find more baking inspiration.

See you soon.

With love from the bears

Wednesday, 6 August 2014

Spray Away

Well hello there dear friends, it's Podgy The Great here with you today. Horace has a virus so I jumped up and took his place at the desk. I was wondering what supplies I could play with and decided on sprays, or mists, whatever you want to call them. Anyway, as I pulled our box of sprays out, I ruminated on how expensive they are, and wondered, could I pawsibbly make my own with acrylic paint, and save us some valuable pence? The answer, of course, being Podgy The Great, was a resounding Of Course!!!!!

Now I must confess, I didn't actually have a clue exactly how to turn acrylic paint into mist, so I pawrused Youtube for a tutorial. Twenty tutorials later I decided to follow what seemed to be the most posted and popular method, acrylic paint, Mod Podgy ( my own brand of glue)

and of course, water.

Luckily we already had several empty spray bottles, including an empty Dylusions bottle, which I washed clear.

I began by filling my spray bottle with water, about 3/4s full.

I then added a smidge of paint, the tutorials I watched added such a small amount of paint and seemed to get a great colour from it.

Next was a small amount of Mod Podgy

And a violent shake to mix it all up ( with the top back on the bottle of course)

I tested my new spray, and wasn't at all impressed with the colour, to me it looked like slightly murky water, so I added a very generous squeeze of the yellow acrylic, and shook once more.

This time I was pleased with the colour the spray produced

It even dripped a little too, yay.

Feeling rather more adventurous, I pulled out some mica that we've been hoarding since 1832!

I added a generous dollop, then another generous dollop of the powder.

This time, when I shook the bottle, I made sure to only shake it from side to side, as if you shake powdery sprays up and down it tends to clog the nozzle.

I was really pleased with the colour of this, and the shimmer!

I dried the sprays by rolling kitchen towel over the page, in my own inimitable style!!

Voila, two homemade sprays. I think that once we've used up our bought sprays we'll switch to homemade only. They will work out so much cheaper, and as an extra added bonus, the homemade variety didn't stain my paws, at all.

Aren't I brilliant? :)

If you want to make your own sprays, I'd suggest playing about with measurements to make a spray that's pleasing to you. Just add small amounts of paint or mica until you achieve the desired effect.

With love from the bears