Monday, October 31, 2011

Saturday, October 29, 2011

Dr Who Scarf, Finished!

AKA Myrna the Mannequin's new dress.

Friday, October 28, 2011

Frivolous Friday: Beading, 1920s Style

I call this frivolous because, well, there are only so many places these can be worn. But I do wear them!I've been doing this kind of beadwork for much longer than I've been knitting--I made the first one (the silver cap with fringe) about 20 years ago. My former MiL swore it was a waste of time and money, but I've since worn it for Halloween, New Year's Eve, Mardi Gras, 20s parties--more than once on each of these.

Thursday, October 27, 2011

Dr Who Scarf...nearly

It's blocking. Mind you, it's been done (except for casting off & cutting the fringe) since the spring. No, really.

The big problem--or maybe the long problem--has been space for blocking. However, I've finally begun to clear out my workroom, and the floor has re-appeared!

Without the fringe it's just about 9' (yes, nine feet) long. With the fringe it'll be just under 11' long. I ran out of space, or it WOULD have been 11' long with fringe. If not longer. It's the series 13 scarf, as worn by the 4th Doctor (AKA Tom Baker).

And this year it'll be worn by an American fangirl in Rhode Island.

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Autumn Pastry

I love the fall. It's my favorite time of year--the weather, the colors on the leaves, and the food all conspire to make it the best season.

With that in mind, I can never pass up leaf-shaped cookie cutters, and I use them whenever I can find an excuse.

These cheese pastry leaves are today's result. There just happened to be half a recipe of cream cheese pastry in the fridge and the parsley is still doing well in the garden. And there were odds and ends of cheese. Voila!--cheese pastry leaves.

Autumn Pastry
4 ounces cream cheese
1/4 cup butter (room temperature)
1 cup + 2 tbl. flour
1/2 tsp. salt (scant)

1/3 cup grated cheddar cheese
1/4 cup crumbled bleu cheese
1/2 cup fresh parsley, minced

yolk of one egg, beaten with about 2 tbl. water and 1/2 tsp. paprika

leaf-shaped cookie cutter(s)

Make the pastry and chill for a minimum of 3 three hours. It's probably easiest to simply make it the day before. Take out to allow it to come to room temperature, about 30 minutes.

Sprinkle the pastry board with flour, bits of parsley, and bits of both cheeses. Roll out about 1/4 of the dough and place on a parchment covered cookie sheet (nine shapes to a sheet is good). Brush each cut-out with the egg mixture.

Bake at 425 F for about 12 minutes, turning half-way through to get the pastries evenly browned.

Repeat until all dough is used. This recipe makes about 50 leaves, but I can't give you a very accurate count...I started eating them early on. Taste-testing is important.

Saturday, October 22, 2011

Frivolous (Belated) Friday

Those who know me (or even those who've only met me) realize quickly that frivolity is one of the things that makes me happy.

1. "Frivolous Friday"* sounds frothy.

2. We could all use something frivolous to make the day better.

3. Could this be the thing that will get me to write more than two blog posts a month?

Here's today's topic: facials.

I'm all about a decent facial, but I'm cheap. (Think about it...for the cost of a single no-bells-and-whistles facial at a salon you could pick up a decent bottle of Champagne. I rest my case.)

Make your own. It's easy, and chances are that you have many, if not all, of the ingredients already.

*large mixing bowl
*bath towel
*table with water-proof tray

*baking soda, water

See what I mean?

Here's what you do: wash your face and pat it dry. Put on the kettle. While the water is heating, put the tray on the table, the bowl on the tray, and the towel in easy reach of the spot.

When the water boils, fill the bowl 2/3 full; drape the towel over the top and put the kettle safely away. Sit down and steam your face, with the towel draped over your head and shoulders. Be careful not to lean too close. Steam burns aren't beneficial!

After three to five minutes, stop. Pat your face dry (put the towel back over the bowl).

Now dampen your face with warm water, and scoop up a small amount of baking soda. Massage it gently over your face and throat; be careful, it's more abrasive than you might think.

Leave it on your face and go back to the steaming for a minute or two. Rinse with warm water and pat dry.

There are many more facials I like to use, but this is the easiest and cheapest one I know. Don't worry, there's more to come...

*yes, I is now Saturday.

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

More Apples

There's still a bag of RI Greenings in the kitchen, but I've made pork & apple pie (very good), apple marmalade, applesauce, crab apple jelly, and green tomato mincemeat. More to come, naturally, but I'm getting our winter treats, jellies, jams, and Christmas presents well under way. There are so many more I'd like to make, but I'm not sure just how much I'll manage in the next month or so. After that I'll be thinking about things like candied peel and plum pudding. Not to mention the sadly neglected garden and house!

I've also been getting back to the Christmas knitting. The latest FO is blocking right now--can't write about it at the moment, the recipient sometimes reads the blog, but I hope she'll like it.

OTN (on the needles) now is a two color scarf for my MiL, from "Boutique Knits", a feather & fan pattern. I'm using alpaca/silk and alpaca, in tan and lavender, and am plotting out a scarf for one of my nephews, per his request.

The Starboard Cape (from 'KnitScene' magazine) turned out beautifully. I'll try to get a photo up soon. I like it so well that I'm thinking about making another,in a different length and color. I got to wear it with a 30s outfit to an exhibit of 30s clothes a few weeks ago, and have been wearing it with modern and vintage clothes ever since. It's very versatile.

Now if I could just be a bit more versatile and get some laundry done...