Goodness, that’s a lot of pictures of me! Writing a blog is such a great way to keep track – from my very first picture (I never wore that dress!) to making a whole outfit I regularly wear. With guest appearances from Hetty and tiny niece along the way.
I’ve loved having a WordPress site and being part of this great community – and I still hope to be, just in a different location. I have my own website now, and I think it’s time to move everything to one place.
You can find me at www.dottiedoodle.com or click the logo below to follow with
I hope to see you over there, and thank you for reading!
I’ve been too busy to do as much sewing for Greta as I’d like, but I thought you’d like to see her in a couple of quick patterns I have managed to make.
It’s also a chance to share this beautiful photo, taken by my sister, Jo. She looks like a little fairy!
The dress is the smocked one I made at the beginning of the summer, here, with a matching pair of shorts from McCalls 5416.
Next is the free halter dress pattern from Prima Magazine, July 2015.
Doesn’t she look adorable? The fabric is a Tilda quilting cotton, and Jo says it’s a really useful dress. Very quick to make, so a pattern to keep and make again for next summer.
There is an adult version too – I’m going to try out this for our summer holiday!
Today is day 100 of The 100 Day Project – I did it! I challenged myself to cook a new (to me) recipe every day for 100 days.
To celebrate the final day, I’ve created my own recipe for Chocolate Chip Cookie Sandwiches.
100g soft brown sugar
120g coconut oil in solid form
200g plain flour
50g cocoa powder
half teaspoon baking powder
50g chopped dark chocolate (or chocolate chips)
200g full fat cream cheese
150ml double cream
Preheat the oven to 200 C
1. Beat the sugar and coconut oil together (I use a food mixer, but you could use a wooden spoon).
2. Add the beaten eggs and mix
3. Mix in the flour, cocoa powder, baking powder and salt – adding a little at a time. You should have a smooth, pliable ball of dough.
4. Mix in the chopped chocolate.
5. Roll into balls, flatten slightly, and place on a baking tray.
6. Bake for 10-12 minutes. The cookies will still be soft – you want them to be quite ‘cakey’ in texture, not crisp.
7. Cool on a rack
8. Whisk the cream and cream cheese until stiff. Use to sandwich together pairs of cold cookies.
This has been an incredible, inspiring project to take part in. If you’d like to see more the hashtag on Instagram is #the100dayproject.
My aim this year is achieve more by being clear about my priorities. I picked four personal goals – how am I doing?!
1. Be healthier. I got a Fitbit after reading this post, and love it. I’ve got the Zip, the most basic one. With the help of my good friend Anna, it encourages me to go to Salsa class – 5000 steps in an hour! My step count is increasing every week (to around 85,000 a week now), and I feel much better for it. Working on cutting down my sugar intake now.
2. Simplify. I achieved my goal of giving away 500 things. Not included in that is my Union Jack quilt (pictured). I’ve completed half the flag part, and am using 30+ pieces of stash fabric to make it.
3. Develop a capsule wardrobe. Vague thoughts are as far as I’ve got!
4. Take more photographs. Yes, and adding to our album every month.
So that’s not too bad. I was feeling frustrated that I hadn’t achieved more towards being healthier, which is my main goal. But I have made progress in the past couple of months.
I thought I’d love creating a capsule wardrobe, but it seems I’m not that interested after all! I think I just like looking at other people’s selections.
Have you set yourself any goals this year?
I was a latecomer to Gillian’s (Crafting a Rainbow) sewing dares this year, and she very kindly encouraged me to get involved with –
“a dare to make (sew, knit, crochet, whatever) a cardigan to go with your lovely blouse and skirt outfits?”
I do have a cardigan on the knitting needles (keep getting distracted) and crochet and I are not friends, but I’d not thought about sewing a cardigan . I decided to give it a go, and where better to look for inspiration than Gillian’s own wardrobe!
I love her blue Julia cardigan, so with a few clicks of the mouse to order pattern and fabric, and some taping together, I got started.
I made a short sleeved muslin with some thin, very drapey jersey, which was surprisingly successful (I need to restitch the front band before I show you – I had a puckering problem).
This grey ribbed jersey has a little more weight but still drapes well. I like the structured look around the shoulders. Julia is a fantastic pattern, and very easy to make.
The band is a loop which is sewn around the entire edge of the cardigan. I hand tacked it in place before I serged it, which means it lies completely smooth. No puckers on this one.
Thank you Gillian! Another inspiring dare, and I can see myself making many more of these.
I’ve cut back on the number of craft fairs I go to, and so my first of 2015 is in a few weeks time – I’m excited! You can see my calendar of events here.
I like to have something new for the fairs each year, and this time I’m making mini fabric magnets. They are only 25mm across (about the size of a pound coin), and so cute.
I have a set of five Liberty print magnets to give away – leave a comment on this post if you’d like to win them!
Anyone, from anywhere can enter, and I’ll pick a winner by random selection on Tuesday 23 June.
Elizabeth is Missing by Emma Healey. Dementia is a painful subject and this book talks about it in a sensitive, compassionate way. It’s a fine mystery story too. I adored it – and the last sentence still makes me cry.
Mrs Hemingway by Naomi Wood. The dazzling world of the Hemingways, portrayed from the point of view of his four wives. It’s fiction but seems true, with beautiful writing and vivid characterisation.
The Taxidermist’s Daughter by Kate Mosse. I love this kind of atmospheric, gothic novel, and this has one of the most compelling beginnings I’ve read. And it has a map showing the places in the novel – I love a good map!
Ape House by Sara Gruen. I hadn’t read anything about this book and picked it up in the library because I recognised the author’s name from Water for Elephants. It’s about a scientist studying ape/human communication and what happens when animal rights activists, and then a reality show (?!) get involved. I thought it was a great read.
Eat. Nourish. Glow. by Amelia Freer. One of my goals this year is to become more healthy. To be honest, it hasn’t been going too well until very recently! I like the approach in this book. It’s about being consistent, not perfect, and she’s very good at explaining why some foods are a bad idea. I’ve noticed since reading it that processed biscuits and cakes are too sweet for me. I just thought I was enjoying them because they are ‘a treat’ in my mind. So I bake them instead – I’m healthier, not perfect!
Posted in books
Tagged book, review