On Saturday, I was fortunate enough to attend my very first sewing blogger’s meet-up in Toronto, ON in Canada. I made Cake Pops for the first time, for everybody. They were a lot of fun to make, and I’m going to include the recipe at the end of the post.
Gillian from Crafting a Rainbow (who also made everybody colour coordinating name-tags!) and Adrienne from All Style and All Substance instigated (organized) this fantastic event for us, there were 18 of us in total, and I’ve linked to everybody in this post! We all met up in the Fashion District, at Queen Street West and Spadina Avenue and carried on to visit fabric stores in the area.Left to Right: Andi from How Unseamly; Kristian from Victory Patterns; Dana from Wardrobe Dysfunction; Adrienne from All Style and All Substance; Sarah from Pattern Vault; Anastasia, sewist.From Left to Right: Vicki from Another Sewing Scientist; Sandra, JustSew; Chloe from Button and Needle; Reethi from Weekend Crafting; Tracey, sewist; Debbie from Sew Debbie; Jagoda, FitNottoFit (in front).
After this, we all met up at Tequila Bookworm, to eat, drink, exchange sewing stashes and be merry. And we accomplished all of the above, with gusto!Four people at the front, from left, Gillian from Crafting a Rainbow; Kay from Gently Down the Seam; Cathy from Seraphinalina and Kristin from K-Line.
Many of the attendees wore items that they had sewn themselves and it was such a thrill to see it all in person.
Thank you to everybody for coming out and making the day so successful. I had a blast and enjoyed meeting and chatting with all of you!
Recipe for Cake Pops
Ingredients: (makes 20 pops)
- Cake mix (either make your own cake or use your favourite mix)
- 1 box instant pudding and pie filling mix
- 4 eggs
- 1 cup milk / almond milk / soy milk
- 1/3 cup vegetable oil
- 1/2 cup Icing (make your own or use your favourite ready-to-use icing)
- 1 packet flavoring for icing (I used strawberry)
- 3 bags Candy Melts (cocoa, pink and white)
- Cake decorating sprinkles (in a variety of coordinating colours)
- 20 lollipop sticks
- In large bowl, combine cake mix, pudding mix, eggs, milk or milk substitute and oil. Beat with mixer for 2 minutes and pour into a prepared 9 X 13 inch pan.
- Bake 30 – 35 minutes at 350 degrees F.
- Divide cake in half and use only half for cake pops. Crumble cooled cake into crumbs with no large pieces remaining.
- Add flavour packet to icing, and add 1/2 cup icing slowly to crumbs, combining until mixture forms like a dough. Form into tablespoon size balls, rolling in your hands until smooth.
- Refrigerate cake balls for 2 hours.
- Melt Candy Melts in separate small bowls until smooth. Dip one end of lollipop sticks into candy melts and then insert into the cake balls.
- Wait until lollipop stick in cake pops have firmed, then dip cake pops into melted Candy Melts, varying the colours and layers.
- While Candy Melt mixture is still wet on cake pops, dip into cake decorating sprinkles. Wait for Candy Melt mixture to dry on cake pops.
Still continuing on with the fun of sewing knits. I made the T-shirt pattern from the Craftsy Sewing With Knits course. It actually started out as stark white jersey fabric. Whiter than white can be white. And I thought, “it’s too white”. So, I decided to dye it. In the interest of environmental and health safety, I wanted to use something natural. I have dyed things with tea before, and they came out a lovely sepia tone. But wanted this one to be more colourful. Have you ever been to somebody’s house and everything is completely white? I mean, everything, furniture, pillows, curtains, rugs. Not only does being there make one REALLY nervous, but, what are the two things you pray they don’t serve you? Blueberry juice and red wine!! So, those were the winners for the dyeing process. I sewed up the T-Shirt first, then let it soak for about half an hour in the offending-to-white liquids. Et, voila!! It came out a subtle purple-grey tone. I made the XXS, as I did with the fleece hoodie, but this one was not as roomy. I would make the XS next time. For the next knit top, I drafted my own pattern with instructions from the book, Downtown DIY Sewing by Alice Chadwick. It included a body, cuffs, waistband and interfaced neck facing.I used gridded pattern paper. I could only find paper with the grid in inches and my rulers are in metric, but not a big problem. The grid makes it so much easier to measure and draft, and I highly recommend it! And this was the end result:It is a printed jersey and was my first time using a directional pattern, stripes and a geometric floral band, and it lined up out quite well. The pattern is a dolman / batwing sleeve style, remember those? I was having a twitter conversation with Charlotte from Seamripped and she was working on her own project and asked if the batwing look will come back in style. I said “yes!” and have since found a lot of sites with batwing / dolman sleeve fashions that look quite stylish. I like this shirt as it is a dressed up version of casual. A bit like a fancier, more interesting sweatshirt, with all the comfort maintained. Update: I have since worn this top and the neck facing would periodically turn toward the outside. So, I followed some advice to stitch along the shoulder seams, stitching in the ditch, and through the neck facing. I did this using a triple stretch stitch and it is really helping to hold the neck facing inside the top.
Oooooh, excitement has been palpable, here at Pattern Pyramid central. As most of you know, this original idea was started by Karen at Did you Make That? and has been kept going by other wonderful sewing bloggers around the world starting their own Pyramid! Here is the information about this Pattern Pyramid that I was lucky enough to win and to it, I also added a Sew Grateful Giveaway gift, consisting of a book titled “I Made It Myself“.
So, we began with printing out all the entrants, like so:Then, Kitty donned his track suit, and began warming up for the official officiating ceremony.Kitty likes to pace himself and start out slow. Okay, VERY slow, but he did not want to get ahead of himself. Before you know it, since Kitty is quite an impressive athlete, his warm-up turns into a frenzy of herculean feats. So much so, that it is often difficult to capture his powerful and agile qualities on film. Kitty tends to leap right out of camera view!!
Afterwards, when kitty was all limber, the entrants names were attached to the official Olympic Kitty Torch, like so: Kitty took his job very seriously, staked out the Torch carefully looking for his best port of entry.
Kitty approached from different vantage points, meticulously stalking the Torch, trying to mentally out-wit it. Begging the question, “Will Kitty actually pounce on Torch, thereby selecting a winning name???” Kitty “tests” the Torch, sizing up his opponent’s strength and skill. Just when you thought it was all only a mind game, Kitty GOES FOR IT!! AMAZING!!! Will these feats of unbelievable artistic athleticism result in a name being revealed??? Or will we have to do this all over again?? A tense yet exciting moment! Let’s wait and see….And, a name comes down!!!! Torn valiantly from the Olympic Torch by our very own brave Kitty. Well done Sir!!! Kitty investigates the winning name.And the winner is Kaitui Kiwi!!!!Congratulations to Kaitui Kiwi from The Curious Kiwi. We are all so Happy for you!! And Pattern Pyramid gets to travel, yet again, to the area of the land down under, all the way to Wellington, New Zealand! It is getting out its sunscreen now.
I will contact you, Kaitui Kiwi for your snail mail and then send off the Pattern Pyramid and the “I Made it Myself” book to you.
Oooooooh! Yes, indeed. Pattern Pyramid arrived yesterday from the lovely and talented Amanda at Symon Sez, so exciting! This pattern pyramid was originally started by the charismatic bundle of joy, Anne at Pretty Grievances. It has been quite the world traveller, visiting various continents and countries, enjoying cocktails, romps on the beach, did some shopping and even bought some cute souvenirs for the little pyramids, at home.The Pyramid began with Velosewer, as the first winner. It then went on to The Material Lady and next to Mrs. Mole at Fit for a Queen. After this, Pattern Pyramid enjoyed it’s journey to Tulle and Tweed and straight on to my predecessor, the previously mentioned Symon Sez. Fabulous!
Now, I also wanted to participate in Sew Grateful Week, hosted by My Happy Sewing Place, where bloggers can take the time to thank their readership and other bloggers for their ideas, comments, inspiration, humour, support, shares, insanity, mild profanity and many other things you can think of that put a smile on your face and make you feel loved. So, with both events looming and with the addition of recently hosting a Pay It Forward event on my blog just 5 days ago, I realized I can’t do it all!!! I’m not a machine!!!! :).
So, I decided to combine the two events and I am going to add a gift for Sew Grateful Week to the Pattern Pyramid for the next winner to keep. I racked my brain to try to discover ‘what does an experienced sewist that has everything, need?’ I came up with the answer “I don’t know”. Yes, a long, hard contemplative second that was.
So, I thought since many experienced sewers have so much, and they are constantly trying to just work through their stashes, and also because I am a new sewer, I wanted to give a shout out to other newbies and try to light the fire of sewing and crafting inspiration! So, I chose a book called: I Made it Myself. It is the absolute perfect gift for a brand new sewer. Some of you must have children, grandchildren, nieces, nephews, younger siblings, neighbours, that you would like to inspire to learn to sew and create. This book includes: a sewing kit, a variety of projects to complete, tonnes of pictures, instructions, a fabric and stitches glossary and templates to use to create a variety of fashion and accessory items. (FYI, on the back it says, suitable for ages 7+ years, and I can see it working all the way up to a teenager, or even older! Hey, we’re all kids at heart).
Ok, now on to the Pattern Pyramid Specs. This is how it arrived, all tan and rested, a lovely globe spanning holiday it’s having, for sure.
Kitty went in to thoroughly peruse Pattern Pyramid. He investigated, he took his time, but finally, he selected the winning Pattern. Note: Kitty’s tail points directly at the winning pattern selection. Clever Kitty!
To the left is the pattern that I removed to keep for myself. I will sew and eventually blog this item. Stay tuned for that fun!
And below, is the pattern I chose to add back into the Pyramid. It is a top and pants set, and the top has princess seams up the front and back, it is lined and has a front button closure.
The pattern was purchased before I had ever sewn anything. I got it home, THEN checked the size….not even close. So, hopefully somebody who is this size will be able to enjoy it. Here is a more detailed breakdown of what is in the Pyramid:
A quick synopsis of the RULES of Pattern Pyramid for those who are not familiar:
- Anyone, anywhere can enter the giveaway by posting a comment below by Sunday February 17, 2013.
- You must have an active blog.
- A winner will be randomly selected and contacted. I will then post (mail) the pyramid to you, plus the Sew Grateful Week gift (I Made It Myself book). Oh, how will Kitty top the last giveaway draw officiating tactics??? He is confident he can. Don’t worry.
- The winner will then select a pattern to keep, add a pattern of their own back into the Pyramid and host their own giveaway. They will randomly select another winner and post (mail) the remaining patterns to that person, and etc.
Yippee!! Good luck everybody!! And Thank You to everyone for stopping by my blog to say hi! I AM sew grateful. :) Feel free to follow my blog and/or my facebook page, as well, if you don’t already. And let me know where I can follow yours!
- “I will eat healthy and exercise”
- “I will love every human I meet”
- “I will read more and become proficient in nine languages” –and–
- “I will never drink again”.
Then, after a sobering month has gone by, people tend to go back to their set ways. So, I thought this would be the perfect time to spring Pay it Forward on you!!
Last month, I was one of the lucky first five to sign up on the lovely Vivjm’s blog and so now, I am doing my part.
The rules are very simple.
- The first five people to post a comment here will receive a handmade gift from me at some point during 2013. You won’t know when and you won’t know what, but I can assure you, it will happen. (I will email you for your snail mail, so it will be private).
- As one of the five, you agree to do the same for five other people.
What a wonderful way to meet new folks, as well as a beautiful and simple method to share the love, as they say. So, let’s spread the crafty goodness around so we can feel the genuine excitement of handmade delights delivered right to our mailboxes. Snail mail rocks!