Sunday, 20 March 2016

Podlings and a Change.

This week I have been a lot more creative as I've started to finish of a doll though I'm not a hundred percent happy with the face so I may take the head off or give it a repaint. I made clothes and cloak which was made from black velvet and has a pretty floral grey cotton lining. There's still a bit more work to go one her but hopefully I can finish her next week after I have bought some polymer clay.

art doll

Also this week I started on a pattern I purchased a couple of weeks ago, designed by Susan Barmore. 

podlings art dolls

The pattern is great fun and is a reasonably quick make and after assembling the bodies it was face and body painting. then it was cutting and sewing felt to cover the bodies. The felt then needed to be dipped in fabric stiffener and placed back on the bodies and secured with pins while the felt dried. I then had to wait patiently for the felt and bodies to dry completely.

podlings art dolls

Luckily by the next day they were dry so I glued the felt leaf wrappers to the bodies and stuck pins in them until the glue dried. They did look funny with the pins sticking out but it wasn't long before I added some colour to the leaves with pencil and embellished them with copper wire and beads. Now I just need to take their photos and list them in my shop, hopefully I'll have time this weekend. 

Cornish Dragon logo

This week has also seen some changes on Etsy as they have had a bit of a revamp of the shops, we as shop owners can preview the look and make any necessary changes. This has actually come at a good time as I was not  happy with my banners and branding so on Friday I spent a few hours on Canva updating my shop icon / logo to my favourite Flamingo Pixie Elf. 

Cornish Dragon banner

Next was my banner I toyed with using the pixie elf again but then I decided and using one of my own art dolls. I think it looks better and cleaner and both the logo and banners reflect my current work. 

Until next time


Sunday, 13 March 2016

A Non Creative week and Feeling Nostalgic.

This week has been odd as I had planned to start on a few projects but I also needed a trip to Barnstaple to get some items for the projects along with some paint so we can redecorate our bedroom. I waited until Wednesday but the Storm with No Name arrived and I decided it was perhaps better stay home than go out. In the meantime I was busy doing research on a long term project, which isn't quite ready to show publicly just yet and I also amused myself with thinking about my shop and I have decided that I'm going to be making another product to sell and they should go well with the dolls and pixie elves. I have ordered a kit and it should be with me soon and I can get cracking on it, though I'm feeling impatient and want the kit immediately but I will have wait.

shell house southbourne

This week I also had a sudden pang of nostalgia as I saw on Facebook a video of the Shell House in Southbourne, Bournemouth. The front garden of a house had been transformed into a shell graden with grottos statues, when I was a child it seemed such a magical place and it was always packed in the summer with tourists. Sadly it was demolished about 15 years ago and apartments stand in its place. It got me thinking that I never took my children to places in Bournemouth that my sister and I used to go to regularly, I suppose living on top of them you tend to think oh it's only such and such well go there another time. I have to admit one place I do regret not taking them and hubby to is a place that featured a lot in my childhood. 

hengistbury head
Hengistbury Head. 
Hengistbury Head in Bournemouth has so many memories for me from when we were little going for walks on Boxing Day or during the summer. We would often cycle from Iford to Tuckton, then on through Wick to Hengistbury Head. I used to be fascinated by the Double Dykes, when I was little a path ran through the middle and you could walk over them, now they are completely fenced off to protect them. 

Hengistbury head and Christchurch Harbour.
Hengistbury head and Christchurch Harbour. 
The later memories are from our Sunday outings in Christchurch Harbour, where we learnt sail and row in the harbour, sometimes my parents would moor up in the reeds or pull the boats up on the harbour beaches and sit and watch the world go by, whatever the weather. My sister and I would spend hours exploring the beaches and headland. Occasionally there would be an archaeological dig up on the headland and which I always found fascinating. 
Looking at the website for Hengistbury Head it still seems the same but there have been a few changes too including a visitors centre. Maybe one day I will get to visit and explore it again.

Until next time 

Sunday, 6 March 2016

Cheesecake for Mothers Day.

Every so often my family gets together for a pub meal and afterwards we share cakes or a sweet at my parents house, conveniently opposite the pub. Usually I make brownies, cup cakes or a lemon drizzle loaf, but since I'm now on a low carb diet for my diabetes I can't eat them. So I've found and tried out a few different recipes from Pinterest including low carb brownies and a yummy Chocolate Heaven cake that's rich and almost like a torte and is lovely with clotted cream. I also found a great recipe for granola bars and I want to try to make my own Paleo style granola for breakfasts.
So this time for our Mothers Day get together I decided I would try out a cheesecake, there are a few different recipes I had found all using ground almonds in substitute for the biscuit base. I spotted a beautiful picture of a lime green coloured cheesecake and I had to have a look. The recipe looked simple and it was a lime cheesecake with no flour, sugar or dairy and the main ingredient is avocado, well I had to try it.
The recipe serves 12 so I halved the amounts and I hoped that the two avocados I had bought would be enough.
First was the base which is pecans, dates, cacao nibs, desiccated coconut and coconut oil, I blitzed it all up and pressed it into the tin and popped it in the fridge ready to make the filling.

avocado lime cheesecake

Next was the messy business of peeling and chopping up the avocados, I find it easier to peel them with my hands rather than using a peeler hence the mess. 

avocado lime cheesecake

Typically the phone rang and I had my hands covered with avocado so the lad had to answer the phone much to his disgust. 

avocado lime cheesecake

So after chopping the avocado I added the lime zest, lime juice, coconut oil and honey to the avocado in my food processor and blitzed until it was all nice and smooth. Naturally I had to get every one to test it to see if they liked the taste. Girlie didn't like it, the lad loved it and Hubby loved it too but agreed a bit more zest and it would be better.
The filling was then poured on top of the base and after adding some Cacao flakes for decoration it went back into the fridge ready for today.

avocado lime cheesecake

And I shall let you know later in the comments how it tasted.

Until next time
Vic xx