Friday 24 April 2015

A touch of brown

 We've has such nice weather today. I stayed indoors and sorted through my paper stash. I made some envelopes with a lot of the scraps I had about and I made up a few little parcels to send off. It's a nice way of de-cluttering and sending some cheer I think.

 I've also been working on the Roman road/rail fence patchwork and working on finishing up some of the UFO's in the basket. I'm not too successful with that at the moment but I'll get there. These things take time.

I hope everyone is having a good day or evening where ever you are.

Wednesday 22 April 2015

Fried Scones

Fried Scones are what they say they are, a simple scone mixture...fried. Make up your scone (biscuit) mixture as you usually do. Cut them in squares, rectangles and so on. 

Have a skillet with oil about an inch or so deep, just enough to sit the scones in to fry. The oil should be heated so it is sizzling hot. Fry the scones in the oil until they are crispy and golden brown.

These are best eaten hot with butter and golden syrup, or honey, or treacle. They go well with a good strong cup of tea too. You can also add in any left over cooked meat like ham or corned silver side, tomatoes, onion and herbs of your liking into your scone mixture and fry up as mentioned.

I hope everyone is having a good day or evening where ever you are.

Sunday 19 April 2015

Autumn rain

We've been having a light drop of steady rain and it is making the days more autumn-y. I have no doubt this will bring in colder weather again and I quiet like the idea. I love autumn and winter. Spring is also nice but not my favourite like autumn. 
Over the weekend I attended the Simple Living workshop. Margy introduced us to paper piecing Hexagons and it was a nice time being shown how to hand piece the hexagons together. Although the workshop was small it was still a good time. I do enjoy the workshops as they give excellent learning skills and it introduces me to a wide range of people. I'm really shy in public and getting me out from family is a big thing for me. So this is a good learning experience all around for me. 
Speaking of learning I'm also getting into my driving. 8 lessons, and I've been down the main street without too much damage...I think. Still have a long way to go.

With the rain about I've been getting into the UFO basket I have of sewing projects that need to be finished. One project is the Roman Road/ Rail fence project. I am now into joining all my blocks together to form rows. Traditionally you are supposed to make your colours match, but I am just doing a scrap quilt using what I have on hand. All material thrifted or given to me. I stumbled upon OURHALFACRE HOMESTEAD youtube channel which I highly recommend going through as there is some good videos about homesteading and simple living. I am following Mrs Volfie's instructions Part 1 and Part 2  for making this Tied patchwork. It can't be called a quilt because it isn't quilted in any way but tied. Also be sure to check out her Grandmother's flower garden quilts too.

We've been making this for dinner to go into pasties. A simple and quick meal. With colder weather it's nice comfort food. The weather is also good for taking a few magazines I found at the thrift store to read with a nice hot cup of tea.

I hope everyone is having a good day or evening where ever you are.

Tuesday 14 April 2015

A hint of purple

We've had a fine day today, not too hot, not too cold. Just the type of weather I like.

I'm working through my UFO basket of needlework and started to do up these strips for a patchwork quilt. It's simple enough modern take on a older patchwork technique. Strips are cut first, 2 1/2 inches and then they are joined into strips of three. The strips are cut into 6 1/2 inches for blocks. The blocks are then joined together, alternating vertical and horizontal to make a row. Before you know it you will have your self a Roman path or rail fence quilt. I'm using scraps. Old bed sheets. Pillowcases. Skirts. Tops. All pieces thrifted and I should soon have a nice frugal top which I'll simply make up as a tied quilt. Very thrifty and costs nothing much but a lot of time. This will be my first real patchwork and I want to keep it simple. I can't call it a quilt because it is tied, not quilted.

 Cooler weather means some more kitchen activity with baking and such. This is upside apple cake. We have it with hot custard. I'll give a recipe for it soon.

With nice weather I took a walk around the backyard. This plant is tucked up behind the shed under a great old fir looking tree. It's grown since it was last planted, when I brought it home from my first Simple Living workshop. The plant came from Nanna Chel of Going Grey and slightly green.

Another beautiful plant that has grown big is my Heliotrope. I brought it at a fete. It has such a nice scent and I really like the colour of the flowers.

I was also asked about the house cushion. I did use crayon tinting to finish it up. If you would like to try the pattern yourself you can save it and do it up. Redwork would look nice. Or done in blue. You could use various colours and even try applique. I created the design from a sketch book scribble way back.

I hope everyone is having a good day or evening where ever you are.

Sunday 12 April 2015

'Tis Autumn

The weather has now fully turned towards autumn with chilly mornings and rustling leaves turning colour. 
I've been struggling with a cough the last few days the type that likes to start at night and keep me awake. It kept me quiet and now is just starting to finally leave. 

I've been pottering around as usual, nothing too difficult. I've been playing with paper of late and made some cards and envelopes to go with the cards. The paper for the cards and images I downloaded from the internet. I fussy cut some of the left over back ground paper, inked the edges of the cut outs in black and popped the roses up on foam dots. The fairy girl I added some butterfly wings and also popped her up on foam dots. I inked the card and added a gold sentiment at the top to finish off the card. The envelope uses left over scraps

I hope everyone is having a good day or evening where ever you are.

Tuesday 7 April 2015

Crochet Bobble Stitch

This crochet stitch looks very complicated but it is simple to do. I picked it up pretty quick once I got the idea of each row. This stitch moves along quickly and makes a nice texture for a dishcloth. I'm new to crochet so I hope the written instructions work out okay. Below that is a video of how to do Crochet Bobble stitch for those who need a visual, like me. The video is from THE CROCHET CROWD youtube channel and your instructor is named Mikey.

Crochet Bobble Stitch
(American Crochet stitches)

Chain 4 sets. At end chain 3 + 3
First row: Count 4 back from the hook and double crochet into fourth chain from hook. Double crochet along the foundation chain.
Turn work. Chain 2. 
Half double crochet into where chain 2 is coming from 2 double crochet to make a set of 3. Begin to bobble 5 together + 1) Six on hook wrap yarn pull through 6
Bobble: Wrap yarn oh, insert, yoh, pull through 2 and hold, insert hook into same hole. Ger enough loops on hook to add up to six. Yoh pull yarn through all six loops. Into next stitch near bobble HDC x 2 more to make 3 dc. Bobble. Continue along line.
Turn work Chain 3. 
Double crochet 2 chain from Hook. Double crochet to end.
Turn work. Chain 2 
Go into chain 2. 2 double crochet and bobble (This will make the bobble before the last row to help stagger the bobbles.) add one bobble close to the end, 1 hdc.
Turn work Chain 3
Double crochet 2 chain from hook end row with half double crochet x 3 bobble.
Bobble matches first row.

If you don’t add row of double crochet your bobbles will be 3d. 

A chart for translating crochet stitches can be found at this post here.

I hope everyone is having a good day or evening where ever you are.

LINK up: Strangers & Pilgrims Home making Monday's


Strangers and Pilgrims on Earth

Sunday 5 April 2015

Fanciful things

Over Easter we had a lot of rain and it was foggy. Very much the weather suited for Autumn. While in doors I pottered around sorting through stuff. I organized my clear stamps into a folder using pages from a photo album that has those sticky pages. This album I got from the thrift store for a dollar or so. The album is the ring binder type that allowed the pages to come out. The album is a new version of the older style photo albums so I feel confident that it is acid free which won't yellow my stamps. This is a good storage idea for keeping all my stamps in one place. If you follow Tim Holtz you'll know his stamp binder folder, this is the same principle but far cheaper.

I used the weekend to catch up on some UFO projects I have in my sewing basket. One of which was finishing the Peter Rabbit tinted crayon embroidery. I have that on a tea towel and plan to make a little kitchen set of it with a bobble stitch dishcloth as well as a potholder...maybe with radishes. I'll show that soon.

The sun is out today, it will be nice to have a wander around outside.

Over the weekend I gave into the desire to return to painting. I have a new blog simply for my art work: Shiralee ann studios. 

I hope everyone is having a good day or evening where ever you are.

Friday 3 April 2015

Wednesday 1 April 2015

Something from nothing


 1 cardboard tube : Paper towel, Gladwrap, or similar.
¼ metre fabric for rings
4 fabric flowers
1 metre gathered lace
If desired small imitation pearl strand
Craft glue


Step 1 cut covering material 35 cm long X 6 cm wide.
Step 2 Cut tube into four 4cm lengths.
Step 3 Place glue around inside top edge of tube. Start gluing material on, pleating as you go.
Step 4 Turn 1 cm over edge and on to glue.
Step 5 Glue other end and match pleats as you go.
Step 6 Cut a piece of material to fit inside tube ( A 4 cm wide ribbon can also be used).
Step 7 Glue this in a bit at a time rolling material over glue as you go.
Step 8 Glue gathered lace on to top and bottom inside edge. (This will cover joins.)
Step 9 Put glue around edges of tube, in front of lace and at this time small pearl strand can be placed around each ring for decoration if desired.
Step 10 Finish off by gluing a flower on each serviette ring.

I hope everyone is having a good day or evening where ever you are 

Curry Notes


A curry is a meat, fish or vegetable dish flavoured with a medley of spices, notable chillies (which give the hotness), coriander, turmeric, fenugreek, cumin and paprika. The overall flavour and strength (or degree of hotness) is determined by the proportions of spices used. Curry powder can be homemade and it is easy to experiment yourself to find combinations to suit your particular tastes.

Accompaniments to main-course curry should be offered in small separate bowls. A little of each approximately several teaspoons, is sufficient per person.

  1. desiccated coconut
  2. chopped cucumber. Plain or dressed in yoghurt
  3. sliced banana. Plain or dressed in plain yoghurt
  4. tomato chopped into small pieces
  5. chopped apple with or without raisins
  6. Chutneys

Rice can be freshly boiled. White or brown rice is the most easy to prepare and the safest with regard to blending flavours.

Dessert course should be simple and light:

  1. Fresh fruit
  2. Fresh fruit salad
  3. simple cooked fruit dish
  4. mousse
  5. baked egg custard
  6. ice cream served with fruit salad


This curry powder is medium hot in strength.

4 teaspoons coriander seed
1 teaspoon ground ginger
2 teaspoons cumin seed
½ teaspoon finely chopped chilli pepper
¼ teaspoon mustard seed
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
2 cloves
½ teaspoon ground black pepper
2 teaspoons ground turmeric

In a pestle and mortar finely grind the coriander; transfer to a small bowl. Then grind the cumin and add also to the bowl. Repeat with mustard seed and then cloves. Add remaining ingredients, stir and mix together thoroughly. Store in a screw top jar.

*A teaspoon of fenugreek seed can also be added. Fenugreek seed is very hard so generally leave it whole and during cooking it softens quickly and the flavour disperses well.

Ruth Goodman. Victorian Farm Series. 
Curry Powder.

I hope everyone is having a good day or evening where ever you are.