Tuesday, February 25, 2014

cub scout cakes

Sometimes when you are married to the cub master you end up "helping" with things like pack meeting and arrow of light ceremonies and the likes. In his defense, he did bake all the brownies, I just frosted them. The beautiful thing about attempting to replicate a patch is that from a distance the embroidery looks like a bobcat, wolf, bear and a webelo (whatever that is; blue-peeled banana? corn on the cob beneath a blue moon?) Up close, it really is a bunch  of stitches and not very distinct. It makes it much simpler to replicate with icing; just a matter of creating the basic outline of the head and then back and forth to make the fur. I do wish the lettering were a little more even, but it got eaten even with irregular font size.

Or if it happens to be a sports-themed night, perhaps football shaped brownies are the order of the day. They're regular brownies (two batches) baked on a half-baker's sheet or a jelly roll pan. After I took them out of the oven, I used a cookie cutter to cut them out. I didn't really have a football shaped cookie cutter, so I used a small can, used a can opener to open both ends, and squashed the two sides to make the shape. Then it was just a matter of using a #4 piping tip to make the stitching. (I did the stitching on the side that was against the pan as it baked because it was flatter).That's what one does when her husband asks for help but she doesn't really have time.  I also bought ding-dongs; um. . . I mean hockey pucks for the dessert.

Sunday, February 23, 2014

Tie Skirt

I know the concept isn't original. Perhaps the design though, is.
In most of the tutorials I looked up, the recommended construction technique was to unpick the back side of the tie, remove the inner core, stitch it together either in the creases or on the raw edges, and if you stitched it in the creases, re-hand-stitch (see how I hyphenated it to make it my own word) the back side of the tie. Sounded like a lot of work.

One site suggested sewing together the edges as you would any other seams with the fronts of the ties together and then pressing the seams.

I instead used a vine stitch from my mom's sewing machine (mine doesn't have anything so fancy, and slightly overlapped the ties.

The result was as I imagined, except at the top. Since ties are cut on the bias (this is where hind-sight comes into play) the top of the skirt was skewed.. I thought about wearing it anyway, but it was too much.

So I found a pair of jeans that weren't exactly the latest trend and cut them off just below the pockets. I like the flower embroidery below the pocket. Note: If you choose to follow this technique, make sure to leave the pocket lining (the white part) intact or you'll end up with really short pockets that don't hold much.
The last step was to stitch the ties on to the pants. I cut off the top of the original skirt, which resulted in a much larger opening. So I pleated the top by sewing the first 2-3 inches of one tie to the tie that was not next to it, but the next one over. That's a really confusing way to explain it. If you look at the picture, the blue and yellow striped tie is sewed at the top to a burgundy Tabasco tie leaving the navy Aztec looking one in between. The result is a pleated tie skirt.

If you buy all the ties, it is quite expensive. Even if you purchase them second hand, at $2.00 a tie it adds up quickly. I think this one had 30 something ties in it. Talk to all of your tie-wearing friends. It is likely that one or many of them will have a few hanging out in the closet that they no longer wear. You could try to match colors, patterns, widths, or you could have a completely random selection. This may look random, but actually each tie has a color in it that matches the tie next to it (you'd have to look closely on some of them).

I like the uniqueness of it, the length, and best of all, many of the ties belonged to my dad. Other than the fact that it should probably be dry-cleaned, I love it.