7/28/2014

Shop Update: New lacy newborn baby bonnets and glitzy adult bike beanies are up for sale in my Etsy shop!

There's some seriously cute crocheted goodness up on my Etsy shop right now! Look at how adorable this little lady is, and she's modeling one of my Victorian-inspired baby bonnets that I just listed. Thank you so much to Nadine form Birdy Boutique Photography for taking this shot!

I originally made a bunch of these bonnets for a craft fair, but the sprinklers came on and I had to pack it in! If you're not following me on Instagram yet then you're missing out, as I did a presale of these with free shipping before I listed them on Etsy! Come find me @ohthecuteness if you want in on future sales!




Also up in the shop are my crocheted bike beanies:


I wrote this pattern myself specifically for people who ride bikes. They fit really nicely under a bike helmet and they're very squishy and stretchy. The yarns have little gold filaments in them too for some extra sparkle! There's only one Autumn colored one left so don't miss out!

7/26/2014

Tutorial: Alice in Wonderland Inspired Toddler Apron. This quick and easy playtime accessory has a bodice that is made to be fitted to a variety of kids quickly and easily!

My best friend's little girl turned two recently and she decided on an Alice in Wonderland theme for the party! My birthday present to her was to help with party decorations and sew her a little white apron to complete her Alice-esque look. I had a feeling it was going to be adorable so I took photos along the way and have made them into a tutorial for you guys! 


This apron tutorial is special in that you can adjust the size of the apron to fit the child you're making it for, and if you leave some extra fabric like I did you can rip a single seam and resew it to make the apron last even longer! Kids grow so fast, and it's silly to get rid of something handmade if there's an easy way to alter it to keep it useful! I hope you all enjoy this one!

How to Make a Toddler Apron
You'll Need:
1/2 a yard of white fabric
2 yards of white eyelet lace trim
3 yards of wide white satin or grosgrain ribbon
White thread
Embellishment (optional)

1. Cut a 12 inch wide strip that is the length of your fabric from selvedge to selvedge. Fold all the sides in 1/4 inch and press, then repeat to create a small rolled hem on all sides. Stitch the hems in place all the way around with a 3/16ths seam allowance.

 2. Cut your lace trim to the same length as your strip of fabric plus 1 inch. Fold and press the ends of the trim over by 1/4 inch and repeat, then stitch in place to make a nice rolled edge:

3. Stitch the lace to the back side of the rectangle's long side. On the opposite long side, either machine or hand sew a loose running stitch all the way along, then pull the threads and gather the skirt until it has shrunk down to about 20 inches across. I like to start from the center and work outwards. Tie a knot at each end to keep the ruffles in place.

4. Cut your length of ribbon in half, and trim the ends into nice V's so they don't fray. Find the center points of both the piece of ribbon and the gathered skirt and begin pinning them together, with the ribbon covering the row of stitching used to make the gathers. Sew with a 3/16ths allowance from one edge of the fabric to the other.
Now, you could stop here and have a sweet little half-apron, but if you want the bodice here's what you do:

1. Cut a 12 x 12 inch square out of the remaining white fabric and make the 1/4 inch rolled hem on all sides just like you did for the skirt piece and press.

2. Cut your remaining length of ribbon in half and trim one end on each piece into the nice V's. Take your square of fabric and open up the last of the rolled hems you just pinned. Lay the cut end of the ribbon against the raw edge of the fabric and refold the hem. Pin in place with the ribbons trailing off the top of the fabric:
 Here's what it looks like on the front:

3. Cut two 10 inch pieces of lace trim and roll the edges as you did for the skirt, and stitch the rolled hems in place. Pin the lace along the outer edge of the ribbon ties, starting at the top of the fabric. Repeat on the opposite side.

4. With a 3/16th seam allowance, stitch all the way from the bottom of the fabric to the end of the lace trim.

5. Finish sewing down the top and bottom rolled hems. This leaves you with a nice bodice piece that can be as long or as short as needed to fit the child properly.

6. Layer the bodice behind the skirt and, with the skirt at waist level, decide how far up you want the bodice to come. Pin it in place and sew the two pieces together from one edge of the bodice to the other. There will be an extra length of fabric with finished edges hanging behind the apron's skirt. As the child grows taller, the seam connecting the bodice and skirt together can be ripped out and the fabric of the bodice can be moved higher and resewn to help prolong the life of the apron!

I hope you guys like this tutorial, it goes very quickly! If you make one be sure to share a photo in my Flickr group or tag me @ohthecuteness on Instagram! Happy Crafting!

5/31/2014

Recipe: Baked Cronuts Two Ways. Filled with sweetened marscarpone and topped with a lemon glaze, or decorated with marzipan crumbles and bing cherries

Hi everyone! Alexandra and I are very excited to share our new recipe for baked cronuts today! Truth be told, neither of us have had the opportunity to try an actual cronut. They sound amazing but as if a regular fried piece of dough wasn't bad enough, adding a million layers of butter inside sounds like overkill. 
But the idea of a tender, flaky piece of baked puff pastry dressed up like a donut sounded just right, especially if it incorporated some seasonal fruit, and so our baked cronuts were born! You can make either of the two flavors, but we found our favorite was stuffing everything into one huge, hard-to-eat monstrosity of awesomeness. There's no photos of that scene, but you get the idea...



 First, assemble your ingredients:
1 package Dufour Classic Puff Pastry (one sheet will make about 12 cronuts)
3 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
1 roll of marzipan, finely chopped into crumbles
A pint of ripe cherries, pitted and cut into eighths
8 oz. tub of marscarpone cheese
1 cup plus 2 tbsp powdered sugar
Zest and juice of 1 lemon
2 tbsp milk
Tiny bit of flour for keeping pastry from sticking
Sprinkles!

Preheat your oven to 375 degrees. Allow your sheet of puff pastry to thaw completely before unfolding it onto a sheet of parchment paper sprinkled with a little flour, then use small and large cookie cutters to cut out your donut shapes. We used a cute scalloped one, but round, or even hearts or squares, would be cute too. We also saved our scraps and baked them up separately to munch on later with leftover glaze and toppings!

Transfer your sheet of parchment to a cookie sheet and spread the rings out. Brush each one generously with melted butter. Bake in the preheated oven for 15-18 minutes, until firm to the touch and nicely browned. If they deflate as they cool then they need to be baked a teensy bit longer.

While they're baking you can whip up the glazes, fillings, and toppings. If you want to make the lemon glazed version, start by combining the tub of marzipan with two tablespoons of powdered sugar. When they're well mixed, spoon it into a baggie and clip the corner for piping, or use a pastry bag fitted with a large round tip.

When your baked cronuts have cooled, slice them in half very carefully with a good serrated knife. Use a sawing motion without applying too much pressure to keep them from crumbling. Pipe a generous amount of the sweetened marscarpone filling into the bottom half of the pastry.

 To make the lemon glaze, combine 1/2 a cup powdered sugar with the zest and juice of a lemon, adding the juice slowly while stirring until the glaze is relatively runny. If the juice wasn't quite enough liquid to make the glaze thin, add a tiny bit of milk to achieve the right consistency. Dip the top half of the cronut into the glaze and sandwich it with the filled bottom half and immediately apply your sprinkles so they stick:


If you want to make the cherry and marzipan version, make a plain glaze by combining the remaining 1/2 cup powdered sugar with a tiny bit of lemon juice and about a tablespoon of milk to achieve a runny consistency. Dip the top of a whole baked cronut into the glaze and top with the cherry slices and crumbled marzipan and enjoy! And if you want to be truly decadent, stuff a glazed cronut with the cherries, marzipan, and marscarpone all together and chow down... You know you want to.

5/12/2014

Shop Update: Herb and Spice Trivets, Vintage Button Art Pieces, and DIY Yarn Bombing Kits!

There's a ton of new cute items up for sale in my Etsy shop this week! These herb and spice filled trivets, which I talked about making for a craft fair, are finally listed in the shop!

As are these wonderful vintage button art pieces I made. I've been collecting vintage buttons my entire life and I'm so happy to have these special ones out of the jars and on display! The one in the top middle is sold, and the center one is mine, but the rest are in the shop waiting for new homes! I've also listed a framing option for them if you want yours to arrive nicely framed!

And lastly, I've created a new version of my Yarn Bombing Kit that comes without a knitted piece included, for those of you who want to make your own and ship it off to a friend!

Happy shopping! ^_^

5/07/2014

Finished Object: The Never-Ending Seed Stitch Wrap. I've been knitting this since September, but it came out so lovely! Plus a bonus tiny baby hat made from the scraps!

It's finally done! Coming in at a whopping 24" x 72" and using over 1600 yards of Lily Sugar'n Cream worsted weight cotton yarn, it's my most ambitious knitting project to date. I knit a sweater once in a single month. This monster took me about 9 months, working on it in the evenings here and there when I could. I'm completely in love with it! It's hefty and squishy and thanks to the fact that it's entirely seed stitch I didn't even have to block it.


I started making it because some time soon we hope to get a small flock of chickens for the backyard, and I wanted a nice wrap to wear while I sit on the swing and let them roam around for a couple hours each day. I needed something that would hit at the elbow so I could knit while wearing it and this came out just perfect!

I used this pattern from the Purl Bee blog, cast on the 109 stitches with my size 8 vintage straight needles, and used all the balls of Sugar'n Cream I had in my stash plus a couple more coordinating shades. I decided I would just knit till the ball ran out and that's how I got the wonky stripes. Possibly my favorite thing about my version is that, while Purl's version was made with a different, very expensive cashmere yarn, mine cost about $20 in yarn. I didn't want it to take forever and cost a fortune, it had to be one or the other for me.

When I was done I had mostly tiny scraps of all the colors left, but I knit from a big cone of the cream, so I decided to make a baby hat to match the wrap. I can see it turning into a nursing cover in the future and I thought having a little hat to match would be too cute!

I used a pattern that I found on Ravelry, but I feel like I ended up with a few too many straight rows. If I could do it over I'd remove the first stripe of cream stockinette altogether and start with the blue stripe right after the seed stitch brim so it would be a little shorter. But I really love it all the same, and I may try blocking it a bit but rolling the brim is also an option. Into the hope chest it goes! And into my cuddly wrap I go...

4/28/2014

Shop Update: Yarn Bombing Kits, handmade pom pom flowers, giant paper flower surprise balls, and tons of vintage and antique goodies just in time for Mother's Day.


There's some exciting new products up for sale in my Etsy shop! Firstly, there's my Yarn Bombing Kits, pictured above! They've been in the works for quite some time, and I'm super excited to finally release them! They come with everything you need to install a unique yarn bomb and it all comes shipped in a drawstring bag. How fun would it be to get one of these in the mail?!



Just in time for Mother's Day I've listed my pom pom flowers: beautiful handmade wool pompoms in specially chosen colors on white twig stems. They're only $3 a blossom so you can select colors and sizes from a drop-down menu and build your own bouquets!


Also up for sale are some beautiful jumbo paper flower surprise balls! Filled with 9 vintage and vintage-inspired prizes, they are made from over 70 feet of hand-cut multicolored crepe paper streamers and recycled tissue paper. Each one is unique, and has a stem which also contains a prize so they're fun to give or display. The prizes inside are gender neutral and great for young and old alike.


Lastly, I've been destashing a lot of my vintage goodies and they're up online now at very low prices! I need the space but it's hard to see some of these treasures go! Hope you enjoy my new goodies!