Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Soooo shiny

I was really excited to make a Marie-inspired skirt out of this shiny blue fabric I got (the Marie skirt is a free Burda Style pattern). Kinda like silk dupioni, only not real silk.

Saturday, February 19, 2011

Tummy Tonic

I saw this post a few weeks ago on Food in Jars. I thought it was a great idea, as I already had a minor obsession with simple syrups last summer before I had figured out the whole canning thing, and I thought this sounded like a good idea. I also know both ginger and mint are great stomach soothers, but I never have anything on hand in advance if I come down with something.

I decided to make something similar to the Food in Jars ginger syrup/"Ginger Ale" with mint, too.

Tummy Tonic
3 cups water
3 cups chopped ginger 
4.5 cups sugar
1 cup fresh mint

Pictures of the whole process are below, but here's the quick summary. Boil the ginger in water for 10 mins. Add sugar. Add mint. Continue boiling for 20 more minutes, stirring occasionally. Let stand for an hour. Strain the ginger and mint out. Return to a boil before filling hot jars. Process in a boiling water bath for ten minutes.

Mix with seltzer water for a ginger mint soda. It would also make a great drink mixer with any clear liquor.

I already tried the stomach soothing aspects last night when my bus ride home was super lurchy. It was great!

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Favorite Halter

I have tons of stuff I've made before I started documenting it here, so I figured I would post some of it to make up for my sporadic posting.

This pattern (Simplicity 3823) has been one of my favorites for a long time. I've made a few dresses from it.

The pattern calls for boning in the back, but I skipped it. Instead, I had to take the back in A LOT. I'm not sure if this is normal for skipping boning in patterns or not. The most frustrating part is adding the pleats in the straps and skirt--my favorite part of making dresses is seeing them come together into a dress, and doing all the intricate stuff first makes me impatient!

I took pictures while making the purple dressier one, which I've worn twice--once to a semi-formal thing, and once to a wedding. 

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Happy Valentine's Day!

I just had to post our terrific Valentine's Day dinner. I went to my fiance's for Valentine's Day weekend. We cooked rainbow trout over a bed of sauteed greens (kale and mustard greens) with garlic and mushrooms with potatoes on the side. We just boiled the potatoes and then seasoned them afterwards with olive oil, salt, pepper, and hot pepper flakes.

We also had Yellow Tail Shiraz/Grenache blend to drink. Yes, it's red, but I like red, even if we're eating fish. Unfortunately my cold medicine didn't get along too well with the wine, and I ended up in bed by 10pm after eating some pudding.

Happy Anniversary!

Our three year anniversary was in November. I didn't finish this creative gift in time for my anniversary visit, so I said I would mail it the next week. He gave me an engagement ring..... sooooooo my plans to make a good anniversary gift got put on hold with the excitement. My gift was "three jars of awesomeness for three awesome years."

I finished the gift in time for Christmas, though, but I forgot to take pictures. I was there again for Valentine's Day, though, so I took some pics!

I made Sweet Apple Butter, Spicy Banana Peppers, and Sassy Blackberry Jam. The apple butter apples were from apple picking together back in September, the banana peppers were from my summer porch garden, and the blackberries were from Costco. The blackberry jam was my first attempt at making jam, and it set really well and tasted incredible! I added lime juice for a unique kick :)

His parents gave me a new giant pot for canning for Christmas, but since there's no fresh food out right now, I'm just waiting to break it in!

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Mom's Christmas dress

I forgot to take a picture when my mom actually wore this on Christmas. I made her the dress (from Burda Style magazine, 09/10 109B--the same dress as my announcement dress). I followed the pattern almost exactly with my mom's size, but I added the sash to tie in the back like I did with mine.

My mom got these navy blue suede boots earlier in the fall, and I knew she would never wear them since she didn't have anything to wear them with. I made her this dress to go with the boots. I also bought her gray leggings to match.

She wore the dress again out to dinner on new year's, but she couldn't find the leggings (I guess they were in the laundry), so the outfit is not complete in these pictures, but it's ok... still looks good!

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Christmas Coat

I made this coat for my sister for Christmas (not the best picture ever, but it's what I have. Eventually I'll get a more functional computer that can handle going through my pictures when I don't have a lot of time to spend on it, but that time is not now.... soooooo sorry for making you wait!

I also made my mom something, which I'll post next, when I go through those pictures.

This is the same coat as my own pea coat I made last year. Mine was made of melton wool, interlined with 200g thinsulate, and lined with cheap polyester lining. My sister's is pretty similar--melton wool, but it's interlined with fleece and lined with a print satin. Her coat is better than mine since I had already used the pattern! It's vogue 7979 (out of print).

I'm showing some highlights of the coat production. I didn't take as many pictures as when I made mine, which was before I started this blog, so here are a few final pics for comparison. Mine is blue, my sister's is "emerald green."