Midsummer

Hello, Interweb!

I’ve been on a bit of a blog sabbatical lately. Yes, there is a project or two under my belt, but not many decent photos to share. So, here’s hoping you are having a lovely summer, whether you are in the midst of a heatwave or enjoying the cooler, wetter days and nights we are having here lately.

Here’s some prettiness for you.

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xo

Young Man’s Fancy

Well, to be more accurate, this gal’s fancy…
You know how Tennyson put it in “Locksley Hall”– ‘In the Spring a young man’s fancy lightly turns to thoughts of love.’ Well, in the summer, my fancy turns to thoughts of finishing all the many projects we have on the go.

At the top of my list is making some kind of start in our benighted kitchen. We need an architect, we need permits, we need cabinetry… The list is super-long.

In the meantime, here are some images that are inspiring me with respect to our kitchen.
It will be black.

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And white.
delovelydelightfulDream house. Princess Margaret Lottery Home. Found here.

And I think this amazing wallpaper will go behind the open shelves along one wall.
(Imma hafta FIGHT for that design decision, believe me! ;) )

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Taste The Rainbow

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With World Pride soon to be hosted in my fair home city and with our final meeting of the inter-school Gay-Straight Alliance this coming Tuesday, I set myself to baking this past weekend.

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What does one bake for a GSA party? Rainbow cupcakes, naturally!
Rainbow confetti on the inside, rainbow icing on the outside.

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For The Man Who Has Everything

A colleague of mine with a penchant for fancy socks is retiring this year.
To honour him, I was commissioned to create a bouquet of…. socks.

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It was exactly the kind of challenge I love!
I spent a week or so thinking about how to go about it and then I sat down and got started.
I had six pairs of socks, so ended up with twelve “blooms.” Each sock became a single flower. After some trial and error, I ended up using some embroidery thread to gather each sock, using a running stitch along the bottom of the sock and pulling it tight. You can see in the photo where I stitched each one, indicated by the red dotted line.

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Once each sock was gathered, I just wrapped the gathered edge together, using the toe as the centre of each flower. A few stitches secured each one in place and soon I had twelve rosette-style flowers.

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What do to for stems? I decided to use a black button for each flower’s centre, securing it to a paper straw with a dab of hot glue (I stuck the shank of the button into the opening at one end of the straw). Then, I slid the straw through the centre of the rosette; the button stopped it from falling out. A few more stitches of embroidery thread through the paper straw and the sock to hold each flower together and, ta-da! Twelve sock roses!

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Next up, I used garden twine to make a French-tied bouquet and then tied on a jaunty polka-dotted ribbon I’ve been saving in my stash for just such an occasion.

When he is ready to wear the socks, all the recipient has to do is snip the embroidery thread (I was sure to use contrasting colours so that it would be easy to see) and unfurl each sock. The perfect bouquet to extend the length of time between loads of laundry!

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My colleague was delighted with his bouquet, I am happy to report.

A Westerosi Feast

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Remember this little get-together?

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Well, of course I had to extend the Game of Thrones theme to the food, too!
I started out by making a few tags to label the food– I used card stock and washi tape to make the labels. Paper straws served as the “stems” for the labels.

Then I put my thinking cap on and tried to remember food and food-related events from the novels. I had to stretch a bit in places, since a lot of what gets eaten in the novels is not the most appetizing (raw stallion heart is not exactly the ideal item to serve to a group of ladies on a Sunday afternoon…).

Here is what I came up with:

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Of course we had to have Sansa’s Favourite Lemon Cake (lemon coffee cake), some Highgarden Berries and Fruits and some “You know nothing, John Snow”-ball Cake Pops. We also had Danaerys Targaryen Blondies.

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What would a Westerosi feast be without Red (velvet) Wedding Cupcakes?

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The drinks were similarly themed– Lady Arya Punch (though, upon further reflection, maybe Lady Arya Packs a Punch would have been more appropriate…), Queen Cersei’s Vintage (which ought to have been red, but I took some license), and a Dornish Rosé (which should have been a Dornish White, I know).
There was even a carafe of water from The Sapphire Isle and some Summer Isles Bellinis.

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I Have a Crush on You

I have a big crush on this little corner of the Paris home of Giambattista Valli:

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The weather here is finally getting spring-like so I plan to spend some time on a patio or two this weekend as I return to my university stomping grounds with some dear friends.

Whatever you get up to, have a great weekend!
Happy Mothers’ Day to my wonderful mum, MIL, stepmum and my sisters-in-law! xo

All Gangstas Must Knit (Valar Knit-ulus?)

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My darling BFF is CEO of a cool little company called Wool and the Gang. It’s the brainchild of two Central St Martin’s grads who had a vision to focus on sustainable fashion, their love of knitwear and the growing maker movement. You can read more about them here– they are so cool and so are their products!

This past weekend, Delovely HQ became Gangsta HQ as my pal J and I hosted the inaugural Knit Your Own Jewelry Workshop! I was SO EXCITED! The jewelry in question was the Sansa Choker and the Khaleesi Bracelet.
Yes, you heard me: making pretty things and Game of Thrones. In ONE EVENT!
Seriously, interweb, I could hardly contain myself; my little geek soul was soaring, I swear.

I started by decking out our front door wreath in WATG style:

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I invited a posse of knitters, artists, fashionistas and all-around creative types. They came in droves and we had a blast, knitting, sipping (I’ll do a food post a bit later on) and chatting up a storm. Everyone left with a bracelet and a necklace she had made herself, a pair of gorgeous rosewood knitting needles and a pattern booklet so that she can make more  jewelry at home.

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People could order from the WATG website; they sell both ready-to-wear and knitting kits. We had samples of the yarn on-hand for people to see and touch, too. I am a sucker for the Crazy Sexy Wool and the Jersey Be Good. The latter is made from off-cuts of t-shirts, the kind of thing the textile industry would normally just trash. It comes from Turkey, where the off-cuts are sent to various villages to be wound onto cones for WATG; the initiative makes use of textile waste and employs women in the villages. What’s not to love? We also had a Lacy Sissy scarf that my BFF made me for my b-day a couple of years ago and our gorgeous Hold Tight Clutches.

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The knitters came with a range of knitting ability and, once they got their rhythm going, there was no stopping them. The littlest Gangsta took to it like a duck to water!

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Of course, being me, I embraced the whole Game of Thrones theme with a passion. I tarted up the dining room bulletin board with the WATG name, logo and hashtag, re-worked for the party with a GoT flair as “House,” “Sigil” and “Words.” (Remember when Maester Luwin was drilling Bran?)

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I laid out the supplies on our dining room table (after protecting the surface with some kraft paper) and labelled each component with GoT references.

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(I used black chalk; in retrospect, chalk pen would have been better as the chalk got dust on our supplies.
Womp womp…)

I loved seeing everyone’s individual, #madeunique creations.

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I think Sansa and Danaerys would approve. ;)