Happy Easter Sunday, dear blog readers. I love this time of year. I'm not a church-attender these days but as a child I sang in a cathedral choir and Easter music was always the best. And this golden autumnness is also very beautiful. It's the same in the Northern Hemisphere too, I remember longing for green and light after Norwegian winters. It's a time for reflecting and settling into a new phase.
I made some hot cross buns to take to a family morning tea today. I used this recipe, which worked beautifully when I practiced it a few days ago, but not so well today. Isn't that always the way? They were still nice though, just a bit crunchy on top where the sugar glaze turned in to crystals for some reason. I halved the original recipe and soaked the dried fruit in boiling water for a while before mixing.
This Easter weekend has so far included lots of friend-time: coffee dates and morning teas and long lunches. Also a family walk up a big hill with smooth dry grass. Other Easter goodness:
- I've decided I want to learn Esperanto after hearing a radio interview with a linguist while kneading hot cross bun dough.
- I finished my journalism studies last week and need to think about new projects and what lies ahead. This is both thrilling and terrifying. I'm starting by doing some knitting. Always a good idea, I believe.
Second installment of pattern friday today- this time the pattern was the result of playing around with oil paints with the kids. I used an old photo of swans I took in Germany a few years ago as inspiration.
Last week I noticed that Susie of Flowerpress joined in with her bright weaving design- if you feel like taking part too just leave your link in the comments section.
This album has been fueling many of my creative endeavours lately- it's a good one for these golden autumnal days.
Wishing you a peaceful Easter break, if you have one ahead of you.
I forgot to show this brooch I made from another button sent by Sarah- this one is quite large and has a shank fastening and an engraved geometric pattern. I made it into a rosette-style pin using some wool felt and vintage ribbon, to fasten to my best dress.
These handmade buttons by Sarah of Fulton and Co arrived in the letterbox over the weekend. They are made from pearly smooth ceramic, slightly earthy and delicate at the same time. I think they look beautiful on handmade garments- if I was more of a knitter, I would knit a stack of winter cardigans and adorn them with these buttons.
But being a very slow knitter, I sewed some buttons onto a cardigan for Keira. This is a pale blue cashmere garment that I sewed as a project for 'the book'. The project is for a recycled knit and uses fine cotton to make bias binding for the edges. It was a tad big last year, but should fit this coming winter.
Birthday celebrations went on all weekend for Miss K with a surprise visitor from down South (thanks, Dad) and family and friends dropping in for coffee, outdoor eating and fun times.
I noticed a bit of a golden-yellow theme going on. While waiting for her friends to arrive on Saturday afternoon, K and I made a bunch of these tissue paper flower decorations. We used yellow and white paper, because that's what they had at the local supermarket. We followed these instructions, and hung them from the windows with sewing thread. Easy and sunshiney.
I also made a garland/bunting from scraps of yellow and cream fabric but ran out of time to finish it all weekend which was typical. K can hang it in her room instead, it matches her new ukelele. Happy times, and the end of the golden weather I think- the long-awaited autumn rains have begun.
I painted a birthday card for Keira- she turns eight today! Because this blog has really grown up with her, I dug out a few of my old photos to make her a birthday post. I believe I started writing here when she was about one or two. Watching a child grow is a good, yet strange, way to mark time, watching it physically grow in front of your eyes. It's like she's just been born, and yet been around for ever.
The iceblock obsession continues around here with recipe testing (me) and taste testing (children + friends.)
This latest batch was requested by Tom, who remembers eating pina colada pops when his family lived in Australia for a year when he was 10 years old. But he'd not seen them anywhere since. So I made these by whisking together equal parts coconut cream and pineapple juice. They're quite delicious: creamy and juicy at the same time.
The first photo above is a page in this beautiful old book that caught my eye. A tree filled with small birds of the palest blue and yellow, I wish we had one of those in our garden.
I made a clutch purse for going out- I wanted something just the right size for my phone, cards, etc. A few weeks ago I came across a bag of soft leather scraps in the op-shop, and cut down to size, leather proved to be a good base for the purse. It's sturdy and strong, and I like the contrast it provides with the retro fabric.
I fastened the whole thing with a pearly metal snap- the first time I've used these before, and they're pretty nifty. Of course I couldn't stop at one clutch (three is a pleasing number, I feel) - isn't that geometric 1980s fabric one-of-a-kind?
Isn't this dark berry-red a beautiful colour. I found an old tablecloth in my fabric stash, it was made from very fine linen and embroidered with red roses. Most of the table cloth was in bad condition, but I rescued the rosy bits to make a pair of matching lavender sachets. Very pleasing.
And another pleasing thing this week came in the form of an iceblock mould that I bought on ebay (Norpro brand, BPA free plastic). The kids and their friends have been devouring iceblocks this summer after school so I thought it would be good to make my own. They look like 'bought' ones, with the wooden sticks and all, so it's all very exciting. For the first batch I filled the moulds with a thick berry smoothie-type drink. They've been a hit, so I'm dreaming up more recipes for next time.I guess any pureed fruit or berries would be good. I imagine feijoa will be a favourite in late autumn.
- my friend Thea is holding an Easter pattern design competition over at Spoonful zine. Looks like fun, you should give it a go.