Thursday, September 22, 2011

Yarn Wrapped Initial

I’ll admit. That pinterest is like crack. I can sit for hours scouring through the pages of DIY inspiration longing for the day when I’ll have unlimited time and an unlimited budget to accomplish the things that get posted on there. (Anyone want to pay me to craft full time?).

I came across this on pinterest and thought: hey, that looks easy. Clearly I shouldn’t listen to my brain as often as I do.

Image and tutorial from evie –s.

It starts out with some leftover cardboard and some painters tape. Do yourself a favour, try to use a similar colour tape to the yarn you plan to use. Or better yet, paint the whole thing that colour so you can get away with missing a touch or two.


Then it’s just a matter of starting the yarn somewhere and wrapping. Sounds simple enough, but it takes a lot longer than you intend. It’s a good thing the Tour de France is a month long, because otherwise I would have had to find something else to watch while I wrapped.

The flowers went through a few iterations:


Until I finally settled on these:


Tutorial for making them can be found HERE. What I did do was attach the flowers to bobby pins for easy insertion (clean minds, folks), so that they can be moved frequently to change the look of the craft.

And the final product:


Saturday, September 17, 2011

Saturday, September 10, 2011

Our Nursery Tour

The orange was a bit of a battle. I wanted something less girly than pink. I’ve never been a pink person, and quite frankly, it’s a ridiculous colour to decorate with (it’s a very, very thin line between a nice pink and pepto bismol). TC wasn’t sold on the idea of orange and everyone else we spoke to seemed to scratch their heads.

The other battle was with the paint. I’m normally a loyal Benjamin Moore user, but since trying their Natura line, have been less than impressed with them. Everyone and their uncle was raving about Behr Ultra, and despite still not having lived down the Ralph Lauren paint experience (the paint that started chipping even before it was dry), decided to give Home Depot another chance. I think it was probably naive of me to assume that a paint that touts itself as ‘paint and primer in one’ would say, not require priming. Apparently I was wrong according to the overly perky teenager at the paint counter, and was required to pick up an additional bucket of the ugliest tinted peach primer you ever did see:


But it wasn’t the orange that killed us. I can justify 1 coat of primer and 2 coats of orange paint. Everyone says red’s the worst colour to paint and orange isn’t that far off, right? But it was the bloody white. You’d think that a primer-and-paint-in-one wouldn’t need 4 coats to get any sort of coverage, but you’d be wrong, and probably standing very close to a very irate and sore 7 months pregnant version of me.

To top all that insanity off, right after the painting experience, TC’s back decided it had had enough, and TC spent the next 3 weeks on the couch pretty much useless (well, unless you needed something googled). So yeah, thanks Behr.

It was worth it in the end though. I really do love how everything turned out and that everything did indeed come together. I had a bit of a panic attack when the seller for the wall decals I’d picked out on etsy went on prolonged leave, but she made special exception for me and did a fantastic job.

This is the final product:


The frames were originally black ikea cheapies that were painted with white oil paint. To save yourself the heartache of chipping, like I didn’t, sand thoroughly and prime first. The art is just fabric TC picked at the fabric store that we mounted using the existing mattes.






Baby Albums – Pink Birds

Since the other albums I’ve posted are more boy/gender neutral oriented, here’s a more girly version for those looking for something pink.



Download .pdf here

Saturday, September 3, 2011

Baked Tofu Salad


I served this dish with the potato rosti from Rose Elliot’s Sumptuous Suppers.  The pancakes were okay, but not enough to post about (aside from this one-liner, I guess).  The salad however, was REALLY tasty.  It’s loosely based on the Tofu Salad in Terry Walter’s Clean Food Cookbook, but after realising I didn’t have mayo or mirin, I pretty much ditched the recipe.

Here’s how I made mine:

1 pkg extra firm tofu

Tofu Marinade:
2 Tbsp soy sauce
1 Tbsp rice wine vinegar
1/4 tsp ground ginger
1/4 tsp five spice
1/2 tsp brown sugar
salt and pepper to taste

1/4 cup chopped fresh parsely
5 or 6 fresh sage leaves, minced
2 celery stalks, chopped
1/4 cup diced white onion
2 cups fresh spinach
1 cup chopped tomatoes
1 Tbsp sesame or peanut oil


  1. Mix the marinade ingredients together, adjusting ingredients to taste.
  2. Cut the tofu into 1 inch cubes and place in a bowl.  Cover with marinade and let stand for at least a half hour, tossing occasionally to ensure all pieces are fully saturated.
  3. Preheat oven to 425F.
  4. Spread the tofu over a lightly greased baking sheet, and place in oven for 15 minutes, turning tofu occasionally to ensure even coverage.    Be sure to save leftover marinade.
  5. Remove from oven and let cool.
    Combine salad ingredients (except the oil) in a bowl.
  6. Combine the sesame oil with 1 Tbsp of the marinade.  Add salt and pepper to taste.
  7. Toss tofu, dressing and salad ingredients.

The great part of this salad is that you can bake the tofu on the weekend, and serve this as a light dinner mid-week in a flash.  We found that the salad alone was filling enough without the potato pancakes, but it could also be a great side dish to any Asian styled meal.

If you’re not keen on the tofu, you could use the marinade on boneless skinless chicken breast (just don’t use the sauce in the dressing after you’ve marinated the chicken).

I’d put a Toughest Critic rating here, but he’s upstairs bathing the dog, and I’ve learned not to interrupt that special time, or risk being roped in to helping.  I’d rather not end up covered in dog shampoo tonight, so we’ll just assume he says ‘tasty cakes’.  :P

Baby Albums – Owl Theme

Mod style owls are all the rage these days when it comes to baby decor. A close friend of mine just did her entire nursery using the Life’s a Hoot fabrics, so I thought I’d design something to match:


So here’s episode 2 of our baby album instalments. Enjoy. :)


Download .pdf here.