Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Christmas Presents

One more handmade gift down, only a few more to go!

I just finished my sister's gift unfortunately I cannot put any pics up or tell you much about since she could easily see this. The surprise and all the fun would be ruined! So, you'll have to wait until Christmas to see the finished product. All I can say is, 2 hour pattern my butt! This was supposed to be an easy pattern but the instructions were so confusing and the pictures didn't help much either. I just ended up doing some of it my way and I still think it turned out pretty good!

I still need to figure out what I am going to make for my niece Emma for sure and start on my mom's quilt. That is going to take me the longest. Since I am not making presents for the men in my family I need to do some shopping for them still. I already know what I am going to get Joe. Which leaves my dad and brother-in-law, hopefully I can find something different since I seem to always get them the same old thing.

I am really looking forward to Christmas because I can't wait to be home with my family!

On another note I am really looking forward to my BeadForLife party on the 15th. I am really hoping for a good turnout so I can sell most of the stuff they send me. So if you are in the Olympia area you should stop by! :-) And if you haven't heard of BeadForLife, check them out!

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Wrecky Carrot Cake

So last week I couldn't figure out what to get Joe for our anniversary. He bought me the coat I wanted and took my to my favorite restaurant here, but days after our anniversary (which was the 17th) I still could not think of what to get him. Then I came up with an idea! I went to Joanne's and bought some little plastic babies and decided to make him a carrot cake with the carrot jockeys! Since I only got one package with only 6 babies I decided to add more wreckiness and write out a misspelled "Happy Anniversary" and add some sprinkles for good measure! Here is the finished product:

I thought by being the perfectionist that I am it would be harder to make a wrecky cake, but it turned out easier than expected and it was pretty fun! You just sort of mindlessly pipe the words and don't fuss about anything. It is sort of freeing since usually my decorating gets very fussed over by me and then I still don't like it! Joe got a kick out of this since we read the blog together and I'm glad he liked it! Unfortunately the cake itself isn't that great as it turned out pretty dry, but the frosting is delicious!

Now you all need to go to the Cake Wrecks blog and read it! Start in the archives and read it all! Trust me you will crack up! :-)

Monday, October 26, 2009

Crafting and baking fun!

So, I have been pretty busy lately but for once not just working, yay! I actually have done some sewing AND baking (and even a little bit of decorating, but it doesn't count since it was a wreck, literally!) I finished Hannah's Christmas present. An art smock with a paint brush roll (plus some paint brushes cuz I am just that awesome of an aunt!) It turned out really cute and pretty much just how I imagined it in my head. Also, it was a project out of one of the books I was going to sew-a-day out of (which I have not done by the way.) I finally found a use for the adorable Matroshka nesting doll fabric that I LOVE and purchased from Purl about 2 years ago. I used iron on vinyl to make it water proof so it just need to be wiped off after she is done painting! The yellow trim is actual vintage bias tape from my collection. When I find vintage notions at garage sales I always buy it because it is always so cheap and way better than the new stuff! The paint brush roll is flannel and quilting weight fabric and I just sort of cut and sewed for that and am impressed at how great it turned out! There are three different sizes of "pockets" in it for all different sizes of paint brushes, plus they will fit colored pencils or skinny markers. Have I mentioned how much I LOVE this gift? Can't wait to give it to her, I hope she loves it as much as I do! :-)

On top of that I finished another smock made of the same pattern but without the vinyl. It is pretty cute also and will probably be a gift for a friend's daughter.

On top of all that sewing, I made some spritz cookies for fall with my vintage 50's cooky press. They are delicious and pretty!

That is all for today, and I'll have more about my wrecky decorating tomorrow. Happy creating!

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Working, working, working

I have been working a lot the past couple weeks between my two jobs, so I haven't been posting since I haven't really gotten much done on the creative front. One thing I did get started at least is my niece Hannah's art smock for Christmas. I will take some pictures and put them up, but I need to charge my camera first. I just need to sew on the binding and it will be done. Yay! Part of one homemade Christmas presents done...now for about a hundred more! Okay, not really that many, but somewhere close. ;-)

Right now I am also dealing with what I believe to be a tear duct infection. My right eye has been watering on and off for about a week now. Tonight at work it pretty much watered constantly and now it is all sore from rubbing and wiping the tears. Tomorrow I will be calling the eye doctor and hopefully get it taken care of. It is actually really hard to get things done when my eye waters so much. Trying to do paperwork at work was a challenge, trying not to drip all over it!

Well, that is all for tonight. It is kind of hard to type with one eye all blurry.

Sunday, September 27, 2009

Quilting adventures

I am going to make my mom a quilt for Christmas and I have all the fabric bought and I even drew up my own design which I really like. The only problem now is, I hate math and I'm not good at it. Joe can do math, so he is being really good at drawing it up on graph paper, but he is having trouble figuring out the dimensions. We started trying to find quilting programs that could help, but they are either expensive or the free ones really don't help. Grrrr...frustrating! I know, I should just find a pattern and go that route, but I just can't find one I like and I like making things one of a kind and unique. I like the idea of designing this from the ground up, but it is difficult! I'm sure we will figure it out, I am just stressed about it because I want to start putting it together because I am anxious to see it finished.

On another note, I have some iron on vinyl in the mail on it's way to me, so I can start Hannah's (my 5 yr. old niece) art smock for Christmas. Hannah LOVES arts, crafts and baking (just like me!) so she is an easy one to buy/make things for. I still need to figure out what I am making for Emma (my 4 yr. old niece) because she doesn't really have things she absolutely loves to do like Hannah, she is more like her mom. Whom surprisingly I figured out what to make her for Christmas right away. Well, I think that is all for today, hopefully I'll post more tomorrow, I'm getting a little better at this!

Saturday, September 26, 2009

Autumn...Oh my!

I'm a few days late on posting since the first day of Autumn was actually the 22nd, but that okay! I love fall, it is my favorite time of year. Changing leaves, the fresh smelling air, the crisp cool weather, pumpkin patches, apple cider, I could go on and on! I love it all! Then of course it leads in winter which is equally my other favorite time of the year! Snow, Christmas, fire in the fireplace...okay, I'm getting ahead of myself, it only just turned fall, back to that. I hope to get lots of crafting and baking done this fall. Both for Christmas presents and for (fingers crossed) my Etsy shop. Lots of planning done, now I need to get to the doing.

But for now, I am just going to leave with some of my fall pictures I took last year.

On another note, I just bought some white and brown rice flour. I am excited to start experimenting with that making some gluten free (or mostly gluten free) baked goodies!

Sunday, September 20, 2009

Birthday Time

It was my birthday yesterday, pretty much like any other day. Joe worked all day, then I worked at night. Got lots of birthday wishes from my friends, so that was nice. Took myself shopping and got some nice new clothes. Not overly exciting, but I enjoyed myself. Haven't gotten anymore crafting done. I need to get going on Christmas presents if I am going to get them all made this year. Going to keep this short and sweet and I'll post some more when I get something more exciting accomplished! :-)

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Zippers are evil!

Okay, so they aren't evil, but they aren't exactly my friends either. I am not going to give up on zippers for good, but I will definitely be sticking with buttons more often!

So I finally got around to making a project from one of the books I mentioned in an earlier post. I made one of the first projects a little zippered pouch which was supposedly easy. While it really wasn't as bad as it sounds, I am just not a fan of sewing zippers. Maybe it was just the size of this project that I had some problems with or that I just have absolutely no experience sewing zippers. Either way, the zipper had me frustrated, but I persevered and made a complete little zipper ouch with no tears! Yay! Here is a picture of my finished product:

Speaking of buttons, oh how I love them so, I got a nice little stash the other day from JoAnne's. They had a lot on clearance and my friend didn't get me away from them fast enough.

Aren't they beautiful?

Plus, I bought a couple more zippers besides the one I used, so I will have to use them at some point too. After I work up some more patience for them. *sigh*

On with the crafting! :-)

Sunday, September 13, 2009

Fabric Maker

I just made my first purchase on Spoonflower for some fabric I designed (sort of)! I can't wait to get it! I can't really talk about it on here just in case the person it is for reads this. Sorry, you'll have to wait until Christmas to see the fabric and what I make with it! I really love this idea I came up with and trust me I wish I could share any of it on here.

I don't have much more to post about today. I've been working and babysitting so haven't gotten much done but I have lots of projects in mind for Christmas presents and hopefully I can get some projects done to put up on Etsy. Plus I have a lot of birthdays coming up that I will be making cakes for. So it will be a busy next couple of months!

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Fresh Lemon Bars

So I actually made these about two weeks ago and haven't posted about them yet. We bought some lemons at Trader Joe's so naturally I decided to make lemon bars because they sounded so good. And let me tell you, they were AMAZING! Better than I could have imagined. I got the recipe from Bakerella, by the way she is amazing and I plan on trying many more of her recipes and ideas.

Mine were not as pretty as hers, but they were tasty and oh so worth freshly squeezing 4 1/2 lemons. (And getting lemon juice in the little owies around my fingernails, you'd think that would teach me from still picking. Hmm..nope.)

Oh yeah, and these made the perfect dessert for when we had dinner last week while my parents were visiting. I added some blueberries to the plate. It made a pretty and light dessert after another amazing meal Joe made.

Anywho, I think I will leave you with a picture so you will want to make your own.

Friday, August 28, 2009

Blueberry Lemon Muffins

We bought some organic WA blueberries from Trader Joe's the other day, so of course I had to make some muffins. The recipe I found in, The Basic Cooking Bible were actually blueberry orange so I altered the recipe and they turned out great! They are a little pasty-white looking, but they are still delicious! So I am going to share the altered recipe with you, after posting some pictures!

Blueberry Lemon Muffins

1/2 C. plus 1 tbsp. sugar, divided
1 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
2 tsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp salt

1/2 C. milk
1/4 C. vegetable oil
1 egg
1 tsp. vanilla
1 tsp. grated lemon rind
plus juice from half a lemon (opt.)
1 C. fresh or frozen blueberries

1) Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Grease or line 12 regular (2 1/2 in.) muffin cups.

2) Combine flour, 1/2 cup sugar, baking powder and salt in large bowl. Combine milk, oil, egg, lemon rind and lemon juice (add more or less juice to get desired lemony flavor). Mix until blended. Make a well in the flour mixture and pour in milk mixture, stir until just moist. Fold in blueberries. Spoon into muffin cups, fill each about 2/3 full.

3) Sprinkle with the tbsp. sugar (and some grated lemon rind, if desired.) Bake 15 - 18 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean. Transfer to wire wracks immediately. Best when served warm, but still tasty at room temp!

You can sprinkle the sugar on immediately after they come out of the oven instead of before and they would probably brown up better. I just really like the crunch the sugar gets from the oven. Let me know if you make any alterations and how yours turn out!

Happy Baking!

Monday, August 17, 2009


I finally did something creative! While I still haven't started my craft book project (lame!), I did make and decorate some sugar cookies. I wasn't a fan of the recipe I used because the cookies spread too much. However, the ones I decorated turned out cute. So less talking today and here are my pictures.

Monday, August 3, 2009

Not Posting

So I am still have trouble with posting as often as I want to. But I have an idea that may help me both post everyday (or at least more often) and get me crafting more. I have been inspired by the movie Julie and Julia. I have a couple crafting books that I got for Christmas that I had wanted for awhile, Bend the Rules Sewing and Warm Fuzzies. I have only made like one project from each. So, just like in the movie (which I want to see when it comes out), I am going to try to a make a project from either book a day. Than I will post it on here, so I will have proof that I am keeping up with it! Oiy! So here goes...I will try to get one done today...but if not, this was my free day. Okay? Yeah...I promise I won't keep using that excuse.


Thursday, July 23, 2009

Home Sweet Home

I went to Illinois for 2 weeks to visit family and friends. Plus, I had 2 weddings in one day and a birthday party for my niece. Of course I forgot to get a picture of the dog bone cake and puppy cupcakes I made for her. Lots of visiting friends and spending time with family, but I was away from Joe for two weeks so I am glad to be home.

I will try to update more often and get some stuff accomplished! No more excuses!

Wednesday, July 1, 2009

A craft a day.

So far I have mostly posted about cakes and baking, but not anything about the crafting I have done. That is because I have done any. :-( So sad. I need to make some birthday presents for my nieces and I need to make some some to get up in my shop. I really want to do this so I am going to try to make a craft a day. Whether it be for me or a gift or for the shop...just so long as I make something. Maybe I can get my creative juices flowing and my business up and going to make this my career. I am so tired of working in corporate retail and I need a change. So here goes!

Monday, June 29, 2009

Strawberry Cupcakes and Rent

I decorated the strawberry cupcakes the other day. Sorry I have had a delay on posting. They turned out pretty cute. I frosted them with my favorite dark chocolate frosting and then added cute little strawberries and flowers from marshmallow fondant.

On another note, I went to see RENT in Portland yesterday with my sister. It was so much fun! I had only seen the movie before so I was pretty excited to see the stage show. Plus, as an added bonus Adam Pascal and Anthony Rapp, two of the original cast members, were in it! We were towards the back of the auditorium, but we could still see the stage pretty well. I am just so happy that I finally got to see it! If you have not seen it, you really should. It is an amazing show with a great story.

Friday, June 26, 2009

Strawberries galore!

I recently got a lot of strawberries from Joe's grandma. They have a garden plot and had a lot of strawberries. The other day I made strawberry muffins...they didn't turn out the greatest, but they are still tasty! I also, took some of the berries and made strawberry sauce and stuck it in the freezer for later.

Today I was in the mood to bake, so I made my favorite cupcake recipe. Strawberry cupcakes. They are always delicious! I didn't take any pictures yet and I am going to decorate them tomorrow because I wasn't feeling well earlier. I have some left over fondant from the radio cake, so I am going to use it up on these cupcakes. Can't wait to see what I come up with!

Thursday, June 25, 2009


Short post today. I did do some sewing today...just a small pillow case for Joe's grandma. Something she asked me to do for her. I feel really motivated to do some sewing and creating...but I realize I am lacking the creativity. When I just want to make things for the sake of making them I just sit there looking at my fabric and my supplies. But when I go to make something for someone else or for myself, that is when I get creative. I'm not sure what that is all about...but it is frustrating. I need to work on that and hopefully I can get some stuff going so I have something to write about.

Thats all for today...just needed to vent about that. :-)

Monday, June 22, 2009

Radio Cake

This has got to be my favorite cake I have made so far. It turned out very cute (not what I visualized) even after some headaches (and tears).

I made it to look like an old fashioned radio for my fiance's grandfather. He used to be a radio personality so I thought it would be something neat for his 80th birthday. I even painted the number of the station he worked for (AM 580) so the radio could be tuned in to that station.

The cake is white sponge cake with dark chocolate frosting between the layers. I covered the cake in strawberry preserves and then marshmallow fondant. I painted on the wood grain with food coloring. All the decorations and hand cut letters are marshmallow fondant. It got a little sloppy in places...I need to work on being a bit neater to keep the cake board looking nicer. But all in all I am happy on how it turned out and so was everyone else.

Saturday, June 20, 2009

A little bit about me

My first post was just what I want to try to accomplish with this blog. Now I will let you know a little bit about me and more what I want to do.

My name is Rachel. I live with my amazing fiance Joe in beautiful Washington state. I was hoping to get my own creative business started when I moved out here...a year ago. Obviously I did not accomplish that yet. I currently work in retail...more specifically, in a mall. I am not a mall person...large, chain store, corporate sort of person either. My preferred place to shop is the amazing downtown where we live. I like the unique shops that sell more one of a kind and unique items you can't find at the malls. I also like to shop online for handmade and vintage items. I like the idea of making things from vintage and new items, to make one of a kind items. My goal is to have an online shop so that I can work from home so eventually when I have children I can stay home with them, but still do what I love and provide some income.

Like I mentioned in the first post, I like to do it all! I can't decide on just one type of thing I want to make or just one type of medium. I like to make kids and baby things like softies, blankets, clothes, etc. Also, I enjoy making purses (like the one in my first post). But I also enjoy baking and cake decorating.

So unlike most of the creative blogs out there that are focused either on crafting or baking/cake decorating. Mine will have to be both.

I hope this helps me and I hope I can meet some amazing people on here. I need some more people who share my love of creativity...and who can hopefully help motivate me and help my focus so I can get my creative career up and going.

Thursday, June 18, 2009

First Post

I love reading the crafty and cakey blogs...so now it is my turn!

I don't know how well I will keep this up...but I shall try. I need to get my craftiness going and I feel that if I keep a blog it may motivate me to do so. I want to get my Etsy shop up and going, but first I need to make things. Hopefully this will help!

(I tried once before...and failed.)

I going to start with pictures of things I have created in the past for myself and others...so I can get others opinions on what they like and suggestions on what I should focus my shop on...I am kind of a creative scatterbrain...I love so many different forms of creating: sewing, need felting, up-cycling, baking and cake decorating...and etc.....soooo, some input may be some help or my shop would be a cluttered mess of randomness!

Here are a few to start you off!