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. 😉

Be Mine

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Around Delovely HQ, Valentine’s Day is a total non-event.
Which, I admit, makes me sad.
{see: colours, imagery, general froufery}

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The good news is, I get to indulge my passion for all things crafty and theme-y by giving my students Valentines. This year, good ol’ Target hooked me up with some cute-as-a-button supplies from their dollar bins. I scored some pretty favour bags, some pens, pencils and stickers, to which I added a few chocolate lips and (my very favourite!) cinnamon hearts. The pretty ribbon I also picked up at Target and some grocery store Valentine cards helped me personalize the packets.

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The girls were delighted!

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However you celebrate (or don’t), Happy Valentine’s Day to you!

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Photobomber.

What Are You Doing New Year’s Eve?

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I am gathering with dear friends to sip, nosh and dance.
Oh, and to laugh, I suspect– to laugh a lot.

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Here are some images to inspire you this final day of 2013.
Thank you so much for stopping by every now and then– I look forward to seeing you in the new year!

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Bonne Année!

 

 

Sweet Treat

Here is an easy, sweet treat you can whip up for your sweetheart or for a friend.
I made this one for the birthday of a friend & colleague.
What is more decadent than a teeny, tiny cake all for yourself?

I used Paula Deen’s recipe for 1-2-3-4 Cake— it is so very easy and so very yummy!  It is a dense, rich cake that works perfectly for this project. Once you’ve baked your cake, you’ll need a few supplies.

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I baked a simple slab cake from the leftover batter I used to make my honey his favourite treat for his birthday. I cut out two little circles using a pastry cutter (but you could cut out any shape you like; what about a heart for Valentine’s Day?) and then froze the remaining cake to use another day.

First, cut out your shape. I chose to cut two and make a double layer cake.

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Plop a big, delicious blob of yummy jam on top of one shape & spread it over the layer. Be generous!
(After all, if you are going to give someone a cake, make it count!)

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Next, mix a bit of icing sugar with some milk and add a drop of real almond extract. This is not an exact science; just mess about until you get a consistency you like. I opted for “drizzly.” Pour or spread it over your top layer– I did not ice the sides because I wanted the jam to be visible.

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Doesn’t it look yummy? I used raspberry jam for this one, but I think cherry jam would be delicious with a more spreadable chocolate icing… Or marmalade with a lemon/candied ginger icing… Or a caramel icing on both layers… Or add some lemon to the batter and ice it with cream cheese icing… Or add cocoa to the batter and ice it with key lime cream cheese icing… The possibilities are endless– let your imagination run wild!

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I can’t wait to show you how I packaged it up in festive style!