meat, felt, scrap

June 7, 2009 at 5:12 am (Hand made things by me, random things, Tutorial) (, , , , , , , , , , , , , )

Well, I got motivated a did one scrapbooking page – not posting it as it was about a work accident Mr Petit had and the title has swearing in it.  But I like how it looks, and no surprises that I incorporated some doodling!  Some craft I can show you is two felt badges I made this morning as demos for a kids’ workshop I’m doing at our local telecentre on the school holidays.  Cute I reckon.

Felt Owl

Felt Owl

Felt brooch circle thing

Felt brooch circle thing

I’ve been busy making a stew in my slow cooker.  It’s about 8 degrees outside and I reckon it will be a perfect night for a slow-cooked masterpiece.  It’s bubbling away at this moment and it smells soooo yummy.   I suggest that you get a slow cooker if you don’t have one because they are cheap to buy, are great for cooking cheap cuts of meat and you can put stuff in it before you head to work and when you get home at night, dinner is cooked.    This is how I made this stew.  The quanities make about 4 serves.

Check your vegie crisper for vegies (especially those who are on the way out).  Roughly chop and chuck into the bottom of your slow cooker.  If using any frozen vegies, leave them to defrost before you start cooking.  I've used carrot, celery, mushroom, cauliflower and whole pickling onions.

Check your vegie crisper for vegies (especially those who are on the way out). Roughly chop and chuck into the bottom of your slow cooker. If using any frozen vegies, leave them to defrost before you start cooking. I've used carrot, celery, mushroom, cauliflower and whole pickling onions. I like to put in about 4 cups of vegies, the more the tastier though, just guess how much to chuck in.

Spread diced beef (cheap cut is fine) and roughly chopped bacon on top of the vegies - allocated about 150-200grams of meat per serve.

Spread diced beef (cheap cut is fine) and roughly chopped bacon on top of the vegies - I used about 1/2 a kilo of diced beef and 2 short cut rashers of bacon

Secret weapon - chilli.  These are from my garden, the bonnet one is mild and the poker is medium.  Cut the stems out and I get rid of about half the seeds (keep some for some boom) and slice the chilli finely.

Secret weapon - chilli. These are from my garden, the bonnet one is mild and the poker is medium. Cut the stems out and I get rid of about half the seeds (keep some for some boom) and slice the chilli finely.

Flavours - a few bay leaves (remove before serving, the chopped chilli, teaspoon of peppercorns (i use the variagated colour type), teaspoon of paprika and 1 tablespoon of vegie stock powder.

Flavours - a few bay leaves (remove before serving, the chopped chilli, teaspoon of peppercorns (i use the variagated colour type), teaspoon of paprika and 1 tablespoon of vegie stock powder.

Sprinkle your flavours evenly over the ingredients already in the slow cooker.

Sprinkle your flavours evenly over the ingredients already in the slow cooker.

Add a good 1 and 1/2 glasses of red wine (any old stuff will do, even that bottle you stuck in the fridge and meant to get around to drinking) and the same quantity of water.

Add a good 1 and 1/2 glasses of red wine (any old stuff will do, even that bottle you stuck in the fridge and meant to get around to drinking) and the same quantity of water.

Stick on the lid and set on low for about 7-8 hours or high for about 4 hours.  If you are home, you can give it a stir every so often.  If you need to thicken it up at the end, cook with the lid off for about 1/2 an hour, or if you are in a hour, mix a teaspoon of cornflour with a little water to make a smooth paste and add to pot and stir until thickens slightly.  Serve with crusty bread.

Stick on the lid and set on low for about 7-8 hours or high for about 4 hours. This is how it looks after about 2 hours of cooking, it will eventually go brown and the meat will be melt in your mouth. If you are home, you can give it a stir every so often. If you need to thicken it up at the end, cook with the lid off for about 1/2 an hour, or if you are in a hour, mix a teaspoon of cornflour with a little water to make a smooth paste and add to pot and stir until thickens slightly. Serve with crusty bread.

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tutorial – simple reversible passport pouch

April 23, 2009 at 5:51 am (Hand made things by me, Tutorial) (, , , , , , , , , )

I wanted to make my sister-in-law a passport pouch for her upcoming trip to Europe.  This little tutorial shows how to make a simple, reversible pouch.

Materials Required
2 pieces of fabric 10.5 inches by 4.25 inches (I like two different fabrics, but this is not essential)
contrasting thread

How-To
1. Cut out your two fabric rectangles.  I use a rotary cutter and quilter’s ruler but you could rule up the rectangles using chalk or pencil and then carefully cut out with scissors.

Cut your two rectangles - I love this bright fabric!

Cut your two rectangles - I love this bright fabric!

2. Fold each piece in half with right sides together and sew up the sides to make a pouch.  I have allowed for quarter inch seams.  I suggest you reverse a few times at the top and bottom to secure the stitching nice and tight.

Sewing up the pouches - I have a quarter inch seam foot on my machine in this photo, don't stress if you don't have one, just mark out where quarter inch comes to in relation to your needle and sew parallel to that.

Sewing up the pouches - I have a quarter inch seam foot on my machine in this photo, don't stress if you don't have one, just mark out where quarter inch comes to in relation to your needle and sew parallel to that.

3. Trim the corners to avoid bulk at the bottom of the pouch.  Go careful not to cut through your stitching though.

Trimmed corners

Trimmed corners

4.  Turn one pouch the right way out, poke out the corners with something pointy but not sharp.  Give it a good press.

img_0633

Push out the corners of one sleeve and press

5. Slide the right-side-out sleeve inside the other sleeve, matching up the top edges.

Insert into other sleeve

Insert into other sleeve

6.  Sew around the top of the pouch with a quarter inch seam.  Leave an opening about 2 inches long, make sure you reverse at the start and finish of the line of stitching to ensure it’s strong.  It will be a bit tricky to sew this bit because unless you are very lucky, this piece will not fit around the arm of your sewing machine, so you will have to sew ‘inside’ the pouch, rather around the outside (see picture because it’s hard to explain, if you are a hardened sewer, you’ll know what I mean!)

Leave 2 inch gap when sewing around the top of the pouch

Leave 2 inch gap when sewing around the top of the pouch

7.  You are you to have to be a bit rough now (not violent though) and pull the fabric out through the little hole you left.  Turn the whole pouch right side fabric out.  You end up with a crinkly, long rectangle.  Poke the corners out and give it a good iron.

You'll need to pull firmly to get all the fabric through that little hole!

You'll need to pull firmly to get all the fabric through that little hole!

Iron it!

Iron it!

8.  Push one side of the pouch inside the other to make the pouch properly.  Now you want to top stitch around the top, about a quarter of an inch from the top, this will keep the little hole closed and make it look nice.  I like to set my stitch length to 4.  Rembemer to go back and forth at the end.

Now you need to top stitch it!

Now you need to top stitch it!

See, longer top stitching looks nice

See, longer top stitching looks nice

So now you have the finished pouch, you can use it with either fabric showing!

Finished passport pouch

Finished passport pouch

Finished passport pouch

Finished passport pouch

Did you like this?  Were my instructions clear (or confusing)?  Give me some feedback via comments!  I’m off to make some more, one for each of my passports (dual citizen) and one for another friend.  I’m going to try making the next one a tiny fraction wide – will post if this is a better fit.

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