Monday, 23 January 2012

Made it Monday - Red Velvet Cupcakes

As seen on yesterday's Celebration Sunday post, I used this recipe.
Now there were a few things that are not in my favour -
  1. I have never had a red velvet cake before so I have no idea what they are supposed to taste like
  2. I only have a 6 hole muffin tin
  3. This recipe makes 30 cupcakes
If you decide to make these cupcakes then I warn you, the ingredients will look shocking, a cup and a half of vegetable oil and 3 cups of sugar look like diabetes and CHD all rolled into one! Be sure to use a large bowl, the bowl I am using in the picture below holds 4.5 litres, it is pretty full!
When all the ingredients are combined the mixture is fairly runny, I used a ladle to fill the cases with.
The red food colouring (a whole bottle!!) hasn't stained my earthenware bowl but do be careful with plastic ones as they might go red! It is much more vibrant in err.... "person" so I wasn't expecting the results.

Oven shot - rising well and looking pretty red, nice example of how much mess I make when baking!

And the end result! The cakes were more brown velvet to be honest which was disappointing, I might experiment with powder food colouring instead or try to find a food colouring which is artificial, the silly natural ones do seem to lack the oomph of old school e-number versions.
Most important though is the I have no comparison I have no idea if they taste normal or not. I was worried they would taste vinegary but there is no hint of it! The cake itself is very light albeit with a crisp top, perhaps over baking on my part or something but it is not burnt in any way. I'm not sure what it tastes of, kind of neutral tasting really! I mean it does have a flavour but nothing distinct!
The frosting was made a bit runnier than it should have been because I couldn't be arsed to weight out the cream cheese when it was only a little bit over what it should have been anyway. The frosting should have a health warning of its own! Serious unhealthy goodness! A definite don't ask and I won't tell situation.
It is so good I honestly felt compelled to stick my face in the bowl (I restrained myself).

There are far too many to fit on my cake stand!

If anyone else has made red velvet cakes and can let me in on the colour secret I would love to know!

If you are from the UK and don't have US measuring cups then this website will allow you to convert the measurements, you need to be converting volume rather than weight.

Happy baking!

Sunday, 22 January 2012

Celebration Sunday - Valentines Day 2

This week it's all about Valentines themed food! This post very nearly became all about baking as there are so many gorgeous recipes out there! Not everything pictured below has a recipe linked, some are pretty self explanatory. Don't just keep these ideas for Valentines day though, use them to add a little sweetness into a dull week - could do wonders for those of us who have the Monday morning back to work blues!

First up are a few cute breakfast ideas -
Jam heart toast

Heart pancakes

It would be fun to serve breakfast with these darling items (I am not paid to endorse these items, I just googled and these came up!) -

Now onto the good stuff! Here are a few recipes that caught my eye -

Red Velvet Cupcakes
These are to die for! Recipe from the lovely Jenn over at Eat Cake For Dinner,
Check out her other recipes too - all divine!

A simple but very pretty way to serve strawberries and cream, this would also
look good used as cake decoration.

The first of two recipes from Martha Stewart, these look adorable!
Heart Cookies

There are thousands of recipes on Martha's website but these caught my eye!
Chocolate Brownie Cupcakes

Last but not least, if you and your lover share the same geeky humour then investing in one of these will go down well! I think it is really cool!

I hope the few ideas here get you inspired :)

Monday, 16 January 2012

Made it Monday (Just!!) - Shoe refurbishment....

The first "Made it Monday"! Not the most exciting post ever, I need to take an evening photographing a load of stuff I have made but I need to learn how to use a camera properly ha ha ha! So the camera phone images will hopefully come to an end soon - yay!
Anyway I must get to the point.... I have a few pairs of plain black heels that don't get worn very often so I decided to give a pair a makeover. I dithered over possible designs but was limited by the number of hot fix crystals in my stash so decided to go for a more contained design as opposed to a full on bling fest (which was what I really wanted to do, I have more heels in need of a makeover so there is still hope!).
The crystals are applied using a Kandy Kane thingy which is like a soldering iron in size and appearance. I highly recommend getting one if you are a lover of shiny and sparkly things, the crystals can be applied to almost anything.... which is a bit dangerous.... you might just go into a crystal frenzy and emerge out the other side with NO SURFACE UNTOUCHED!!!

They are probably not to every ones tastes but will add a little je ne sais quois to a LBD or dress up some jeans. So next time you're at home and after a quick little project to fill an hour give this a go - if you are using shoes that don't get worn or ones that were dirt cheap, what do you have to lose?!

Sunday, 15 January 2012

Celebration Sunday - Valentines Day 1

Some of us love Feb 14th, some of us think it is tacky and a holiday invented to make greetings card companies money... I fall into the middle of the two camps, I don't go overboard but it is always nice to be romantic :)
More importantly - An excuse for crafting! (Not that most of us need an excuse!)

This Sunday is about cute things to craft, in the following weeks cards, baking and sewing projects will be covered.

First up are a few cute packaging ideas, ideal for small gifts and sweet treats.

Cute pillow boxes!
Fill these with heart shaped sweets or your loved one's favourite confectionery.
The link for this project will take you to the tutorial which includes a template for the boxes.

A lovely project from Martha Stewart, ideal for small gifts and love notes.

Perfect for slightly larger gifts, I think it would be simple enough to resize.

I also found some adorable projects/inspiration for the home.

Decorated Candles
I do not recommend lighting candles decorated with flammable objects!
Source -

Heart wreath
Listed in a Christmas wreath collection....screams Vday to me!

Lastly one little polymer clay jewellery project - I think the possibilities are endless for using the beads though.

Heart bracelet
Darling blog too FYI :)

I hope that something here has inspired you! Let me know if you try or have previously tried any of these or similar projects, I'd love to see them!

Saturday, 14 January 2012

It's all coming together!

Well readers, I have made progress with the scribbles on used envelopes!
Although there are many things still to be worked out, I have decided on a few definites to feature here.

The current line up will be -
* "Made It Mondays" - Things I have made.
* "Tutorial Thursdays" - Tutorials by myself and other crafters, also a few "round ups".
* "Celebration Sundays" - Homemade holiday preparation with inspiration posts, links to tutorials, my own projects and more!

I hope that starting off with a few themed days will keep the blogging ball rolling, sometimes when you're in a bit of an uninspired slump having a theme can help :)

If you have any thoughts about the themed structure or perhaps something you would like to see leave me a comment!

Friday, 6 January 2012


As mentioned previously, I have embarked on a mission to improve my little ol' blog, hopefully propelling it to the first goal of 100 followers! I know 100 is a lot of followers for someone who currently has 12 but why not aim for something which is a bit of a stretch as opposed to just out of arms reach? :)

Things are still being devised on my executive pieces of scrap paper and old envelopes but I'm getting there!
As you can see I have changed the look of the blog a bit, I love all the cute backgrounds available online but I have issues with colour and pattern so anything that I liked enough to put up morphed into a crazy busy nightmare which just had to go! Some blogs pull it off and give me serious cuteness envy but after having a think I came to the conclusion that the blogs I liked the look of best were ones with a few graphics and white backgrounds; Neat, uncluttered, un-fussy, professional looking and beautifully simple. So that's what I decided to do, I hope you agree it looks a lot better now.

Hopefully I will be able to reveal all my other plans soon - fingers crossed!


Thursday, 5 January 2012

Happy New Year!

Obviously the blogging has been neglected for a few months, unfortunately life and Christmas got in the way somewhat, I'm sure everyone can appreciate that life gives you lemons and sometimes all you can do is juggle them for a while before you get around to the lemonade.

However, new year, new start, out with the old and in with the upcycled and what-not!

I have been thinking about how I can improve on this blog (well blogging at all would be a start) in all areas - presentation, posts, backgrounds (not sure I like the latest look any more), traffic etc etc.

There have been a few definites already and much more to procrastinate on whilst eating breakfast/working/trying to sleep y'know those times when you get ideas and have to save them until later and then forget the super cool awesome bit...or perhaps that's just me!

Any way, I hope you have all had a wonderful Christmas and a fantastic start to the new year :)

Watch this space!