Friday, August 31, 2012

Upcycling Obsession

I have a new obsession. Upcycling. Taking old clothes and making them awesome and better. Here's a quick step by step to take you through an upcycle. There are way better and cooler ways to do this, but this is how I've been doing them so far and it's worked out pretty well. 

Old Shirt you either don't like, don't wear...could have a stain rip whatever!
Heat Bond Tape
Thread and Sewing Machine
Good Scissors
Extra scrap material (enough to cover the shirt where you want to) -this is completely optional!

Step1 Grab your shirt and cut. I ended up cutting this shirt across about 1 inch under the gathered portion, and then I cut up the shirt to make it into a little half cardigan. 

Step 2. Take your extra material you would like to sew to the bottom of your shirt, if you're not doing this, you can just skip this step, add heat bond to the bottom of the sewed cuff you will create and sew along the bottom. 

Step 3. I added heat Bond Tape to the strip I was placing along the bottom and folded over the edges and ironed it onto the shirt. 

Step 4. I also FYI added Heat bond to either side of the fabric after the ends were folded to attach it to the shirt. 

Step 5. I sewed to lines along the hem of the shirt to make sure it was secure. I am still learning and I purposely stitched the different ways to get practice. 

Step 6. Measure the strips for the front sides of the shirt where you've just cut to make it into a cardigan. Again this is optional if you're not adding more material then you can just fold your edge over and sew. But I actually love it with the different colours and material I think it looks cute and different than anything on the market now. I followed the same steps as far as heat bond and folding everything over and then used more heat bond to attach the shirt fabric to the new fabric I was sewing on. 

Step 7. Looks like the above. then I sewed along the edge of the new fabric and the top and the bottom. 

And Voila! now you have new awesomeness! You can also save the material from the bottom of the shirt and make little rosettes to make as matching hair pins (I've been doing that) or you can use it for another new upcycle!! Please link or comment with a link to your fabulous upcycle projects and I will feature them on the blog!

Linking up to See Vanessa Craft's Friday Do Something Crafty!
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Thursday, August 30, 2012

Teacher Love

Ava is beyond crazy excited to go to school. So excited in fact that when I tried to explain that we were going to school yesterday to meet her teacher, drop off her school supplies and sign up for girl scouts...not actually staying at school she became incredibly upset. I tried to soothe her by explaining I had made a cool present for her teacher, but that backfired too because then I got "I want you to make a present for me!!" 

This is so easy to make but I can tell you that the teachers love being thought of!


Mint Candies -We always have these on hand because our kids can be bribed more with mints than any other candy...go figure!
A small bag -I used a treat bag I usually get from Michaels or Joanns for cookies but you could use a ziplock baggie
FREE "You were Mint to be my teacher" printable - Found here on the Celebration shoppe!

Last ingredient...

Cute Bebe whose only three months old but refuses to sit still and not roll over. He's figured it out and he wants to be part of the action!!

First I added her new teachers name and printed the signs out. 

Next I filled my bag with mints, this would be cute if you could find those colourful swirled mints too. 

I folded my sign in the middle and measure the total length and side lengths I needed to attach it to my bag. Then I cut off the remaining strips. 

I placed a piece of tape over the bag to keep it secure. 

Then stapled the paper to the bag. Note: They aren't actually made for this purpose, they were made to wrap around chocolate bars so one side will be upside down but it's still super cute. 

I cut out some ribbon to hide the staples and used tacky glue to attach it to the card stock. 

And Voila! Super cute, easy and won't stretch your budget but will make someone feel super special! 
Umm by the way when Ava handed it to her teacher she was elated and then she looked at me and said: "Oh my goodness did you find this on Pintrest?"
Yeah, she and I are going to be BFF.

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Ballerina Cookies

 Our daughter Ava had her summer ballet recital this past weekend and the parents were emailed and asked to bring some home baked goods to sell with the profits going to the local food shelter. 

I thought it would be cute to make some Ballerina cookies. I used my favourite cookie recipe from Bake at 350 I use Lemon extract instead of Almond Extract. And then I whipped up my fav Royal Icing from Sweetopia.

 First for the heart cookies I outlined a ballet slipper.

Then filled it in and used some white Royal icing for the ballet straps.

For the ballet slipper cookies I outlined the slipper. 

Then I created a border around the inside of the shoe and filled it in and added a white bow. 

When both cookies had dried for 24 hours I brushed them with a little bit of water mixed with meringue powder and shook on the glitter. Then I placed them in a food safe cookie bag and added some white ribbon at the top. 

Below are a few pictures of our little ballerina in action! She did such a good job we are so proud of her. 

Monday, August 27, 2012

Upcycle: Project wearable shirt

I've been kind of obsessed with upcycling projects ever since I stumbled upon I am Momma - Hear me Roar's Upcycled T-Shirt Dress. Take old clothes? Maybe some you bought and don't even wear or have never worn and make them into something awesome AND wearable? I'm all over it. 


I bought both shirts for about $2 at goodwill. I didn't try them on mostly because I had three kids with me and there was no time to do this. They both were just ok, but since I knew and had a new found obsession with upcycling I wasn't too worried about it. 

So I cut the shirt in the middle...

Then up the center of the shirt taking care around the lace in the middle. 

I cut the bottom half of the shirt to use in another part of the shirt. You'll see!

I sewed the seam down the side...admittedly this is my second project ever on a sewing machine and the fabric was like a stretch jersey knit so mind the drunken stitching. 

I ended up using the heat bond tape which definitely helped at least get my needle through the fabric without having it bunch up like crazy. 

I know, drunken stitching.

I used some of the leftover fabric to make little rosettes and sewed them onto the shirt.

I was pretty happy with the final results. The flowers were a little heavy so I had to trim them back and resew them at a smaller size. 

Again pretty happy with the results I think it looks nice with the lace. Maybe try with lace flowers if I can find some lace that matches. That wouldn't be as heavy.

I used more of the fabric to make a matching rosette pin! So cute.

Friday, August 24, 2012

Fun Baby Shower Cupcakes

Here's an easy baby shower cupcake idea! If you're not sure what the Momma to be is having you can do blue and pink, or if you are the momma to be and you want to surprise the family this is a great idea!! I recently made these for a wonderful customer who was hosting a baby shower. The theme she chose was cravings so I made, Cookie Dough, Breakfast in Bed and Chocolate Peanut butter. 

Make a half batch of your favourite white cake, tint half blue and half pink (or all the same colour if you know the sex).

Fill the rest of the cupcake with your favourite chocolate or Vanilla Cupcake batter. I liked doing the chocolate because I thought the contrast was nice. 

These are my Chocolate Peanut Butter cupcakes. An incredibly soft chocolate cake with a tiny peanut butter cup in the middle. Then I top it with a swirl of Peanut butter butter cream and a chocolate ganache frosting, and top it with another tiny peanut butter cup. 

So cute, what a fun surprise for Momma to be!!

This was like the best cupcake ever, I am so glad I made extra and got to eat this one! :) 

Mmm chocolatey goodness....

Thursday, August 23, 2012

Best Turkey Burgers Ever

Let me tell you I love hamburgers. My only problem? I can't eat hamburgers because I don't digest beef well and it makes me sick beyond belief. So I have to look to alternatives which is fine because the alternatives are better for you in the long run...but let's face it, they can be dry and nothing tastes as good as beef! 

Until now. Now I bring you the best Turkey burgers in the world. They were so juicy and moist I could have eaten two...but I had also just made cookies and they needed to be consumed as well so cookies won over second hamburgers. 

I also made homemade sesame seed buns! Mmmmmmmm!

For the Hamburger buns I followed the recipe from Food People Want

Combine 1 pkg of active dry yeast with 1 1/3 cups milk* and 1 1/2 tsp sugar.
*The recipe calls for heating the milk to 115 degrees, don't do this. I did this, liquids that are added to yeast that are hot kill the yeast...okay that might not be accurate exactly but I remember Alton Brown saying this. The Milk should be room temperature, not hot it will help your dough rise and be more fluffy then dense. I ended up with tasty, but dense buns. 

Add 4 cups of flour, remaining sugar and a dash of sea salt.

Next add your slightly beaten egg.

And the butter. Attach your dough hook and knead for 8 mins, until the dough pulls away from the sides and is soft. It shouldn't be sticky. 

Start making your bacon for the Turkey Burgers. Do you do this? I always cook bacon in a broiling pan...I think it has to do with fooling myself that it's "healthier" because it doesn't cook in it's own fat. I also like crispy bacon and so I make it on the low broiler setting. Also you don't have to worry about splash back. Cook 7 pieces of bacon, 4 for the Burgers, 2 to top the burgers and 1 for you to eat because lets face it you will anyways so might as well provision a slice in advance...

When the bacon is crispy enough let it rest on some paper towel.

After 8 mins of kneading transfer to an oiled bowl and let it rest for 2 hours. 

Gather your ingredients for your burgers.
1 pkg of ground turkey
1/2 cup of feta
1 egg
1/2 cup of bread crumbs (italian seasoned)
4 strips of bacon chopped up
1/2 tbs A1
Dash of salt and pepper

Throw all of your ingredients in and mix to combine. 

Your meat should come together and be slightly sticky, you don't want to dry them out by adding too much bread crumbs. 

It's always good to have a handsome helper with you.

Make the desired patty size needed for your burgers. I made mine normal size as far as I am concerned and it came to 5 patties. 

After the 2 hours, pinch 12 even balls from the dough and wrap in the saran wrap to proof for another 1.5 hours. 

When you're ready to bake preheat the oven to 400 degrees, spray them with water and add your sesame seeds. Bake for 19-20 mins until golden.

While your buns are cooking throw your Turkey burgers on the barbeque, grill on each side at least 5 or so mins until the internal temperature meets Turkey doness standards.

Place a piece of bacon and slice of sharp cheddar on top, turn the barbeque off and let it melt. 

Once your buns are ready pull them out of the oven and let them sit on a wire rack to cool. Then slice and add your burger and favourite toppings and eat!!

Oooh look a salad to go with all that bacon...should have made more bacon for the salad...note for next time. 

Mmmm look at those feta and bacon innards. 

This is so good I promise you won't be disappointed. They were so moist and tasty, we're having them again tonight!!